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Simple Guide to Write Motivation Letter

Last updated on 20 Nov 2019
Simple Guide to Write Motivation Letter

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By Nurchalimah, Translated by Irene Atalia


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A motivation letter is one of the most important aspects of the application process to enter a university abroad. A great motivation letter can help to boost your chance in the acceptance. Therefore, you have to ensure that your motivation letter reflects your motivations and your personality.

To help you write a motivation letter that sets for success, we have gathered the main things you need to have in your motivation letter. Here is the list:

Set Your Focus

In your motivation letter, your focus should be on the best aspects of yourself. Usually, you are given a choice of topics to be written the letter. With the topic that you pick, your best aspects should be highlighted and incorporated throughout your letter, creating a flow that best concludes your reasons and ideas.

Focus on one aspect that you have or your chosen narrative in your life to showcase to the reader your personality through the letter. Keep in mind that the readers need to understand the topic you discuss in the letter. The flow of your narrative needs to be easy to follow and comprehensive from the beginning to the end.

Make Your Letter Come Alive

Although it’s just a piece of paper, a motivation letter contains all of your ideas to be conveyed to the readers. Thus, it is important to have this motivation letter interesting to read. Ask your peers to read your motivation letter and be open to feedback! This will help you develop the best version of the motivation letter and make sure your letter is interesting!

Intan Farhana, an Erasmus+ Scholarship awardee to Ireland told EHEF that a motivation letter should describe all the best aspects about you. You have to make sure that when the recruiters read your motivation letter, they already can decide that you are the right fit!


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Show and Tell

When writing a motivation letter, avoid using subjective phrases such as, “I like to meet new people from all over the world”. You need to include elaborated details of yourself such as the personal stories of why you like to meet new people, what are the things you like to discuss with them, and what are the benefits you gain from those meetings?

Also, avoid using cliche answers that are used only to make the recruiters happy. And then, it will be much better if the motivation letter that you wrote already answers all of the guiding questions in the description.

Maximize the Word Limit

Whether there’s a limit to the number of words or not, you should write a comprehensive yet concise.

When writing your first draft, don’t mind any limit of word count. Write everything you want to say and elaborate on your ideas. After you review your letter, cut off the words you don’t need and make sure your letter matches the word limit from your recruiters. How you follow recruiters’ instructions also matters to how you’re viewed.

Proofread

The last step to completing your motivation letter is to proofread. No matter how confident you are in your letter, never cease to proofread! You can always catch little details that you might miss the first time. Your letter must be mistake-free and grammatically correct.

You can also ask for help from people you know has good language abilities -- friends, parents, teachers, even bosses, too! Trusted people can give you feedback and insights to heighten the standards of your motivation letter, and increasing your chances to be accepted by the recruiters.


Irene Atalia sedang mengejar gelar Humaniora di Universitas Indonesia, tepatnya di program studi Prancis. Ia tumbuh di Indonesia dengan rasa cinta pada negara-negara Eropa dan budayanya. Selagi belajar dan menambah pengetahuan tentang negara yang ia kagumi, ia juga berharap bisa membagikan pengetahuannya dengan orang-orang yang memiliki mimpi yang sama.