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“Think about an academic subject that inspires you. Describe how you have furthered this interest inside and/or outside of the classroom.”

Personal Insight Question 6, or PIQ 6, provides the best opportunity for applicants to showcase all of their “fit-to-major” activities to make the case for their chosen course of study. It is especially important for students who select the same major across all campuses they apply to. It is vital for applicants to UC Berkeley’s engineering and business programs.

Unlike other UC prompts that offer creative interpretation, PIQ 6 is precise and focused. It revolves around an academic subject that inspires you. This prompt challenges applicants to delve deep into their academic passions and demonstrate how they’ve pursued their interests inside and outside the classroom.

In this blog post, we’ll guide you through crafting an exceptional response to this prompt by following eight essential tips. Download our complete guide for examples and a bonus introduction!

  • 1

    Embrace Everything Connected to Your Academic Passion: Think broadly about your chosen academic subject. If it’s biology, consider not only your coursework but also projects, assignments, clubs, summer programs, internships, research, volunteering, reading and/or viewing, and related experiences.

  • 2

    Identify Why You Love the Subject: Addressing why you’re drawn to the academic subject is crucial. What about it excites and inspires you? Whether it’s the analytical challenges of physics or the creative possibilities of literature, share what fuels your passion.

  • 3

    Use the Essay to Focus on Your Intended Major: PIQ 6 can serve as an anchor for your application, providing a central theme that aligns with your intended major. This essay is an opportunity to demonstrate your commitment to your chosen field of study.

  • 4

    Brainstorm Extensively: Cast a wide net during brainstorming. List every academic and extracurricular activity connected to your subject, even if it seems insignificant initially. This comprehensive list will serve as your “raw material.”

  • 5

    Choose an Organizational Approach: Decide whether to organize your content chronologically or thematically. Each approach has its merits. Chronological organization can show growth, while thematic organization can highlight different dimensions of your interest.

  • 6

    Stitch Together Your Content with Transitions: Assemble your essay by transitioning smoothly between different aspects of your involvement. Transition words, phrases, and clauses will help guide readers through your narrative.

  • 7

    Revise Diligently: Draft a detailed essay, and then trim it down to meet the word count. Don’t hesitate to revise several times to refine your narrative, eliminate redundancy, and ensure clarity and impact.

  • 8

    Ensure Harmony with Other Essays: Your UC application includes multiple essays, so ensure that your response to Personal Insight Question 6 complements your other essays. They should collectively provide a well-rounded picture of you as an applicant.

For winning examples and a bonus general introduction to tackling the UC Personal Insight Questions, download our complete guide below. We hope it inspires fresh ideas for your UC application!

Remember, the key is to demonstrate genuine passion, reflect on why the subject inspires you, and provide a clear and engaging narrative that complements your other essays. By following the eight tips outlined in this blog post, you can create a response to Personal Insight Question 6 that stands out and reflects the unique qualities that make you a strong candidate for admission to your desired UC campus.

Ready to delve deeper into your academic passion?

Ready to delve deeper into your academic passion?

Download our comprehensive PDF guide, complete with fresh winning examples and detailed strategies for all UC Personal Insight Questions. This invaluable resource will inspire your writing and provide you with the tools needed to craft a compelling essay.

Fill out the form below to access this exclusive guide and give your college application the competitive edge it deserves!

At Blue Stars, we specialize in guiding students through the essay writing process. Our expert team will help you create an exceptional essay that reflects your unique interests, experiences, and aspirations. Contact us today to get started on your journey to crafting an impressive UC application that stands out from the crowd. Your academic passion deserves to shine – let us help you make it happen!

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About the Author: Amy Morgenstern

Dr. Amy Morgenstern, affectionately known as Dr. M, is the founder and CEO of Blue Stars Admissions Consulting. She holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and an MFA in contemporary art. A former professor of philosophy, honors program associate director, and assistant to the director of the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture, Dr. M brings a wealth of academic and multicultural experience to her practice.