Essay Questions for Transfer Applicants


You'll answer one to two essays as part of your application, depending on whether you're applying to a major or to our undeclared program, and if you've selected a second choice. Essays should be 300 to 400 words each.

If You're Applying to a Major:

Explain your interest in the major you selected. Describe how you have recently developed this interest, inside and/or outside of the classroom, and how this major relates to your professional goals.

If You're Applying to Our Undeclared Program:

Explain your academic interests and strengths or your future career goals. You may include any majors or areas of study you are currently considering.

If You've Selected a Second-Choice Major (Including Undeclared):

You have selected a second-choice major. Please explain your interest in this major.

transfer student writing her essay

Tips for Writing Your Essay

Be memorable.

The essay portion of the application is important because it gives us further insight into who you are and who you want to be. Make us remember you!

Be prepared.

Take time to think about and brainstorm your message. Create an outline, write a good first draft, and edit multiple times.

Be yourself.

We want to know more about you, so be honest and let us into your world. Instead of making broad statements about what you want to do, provide specific examples from your current institution or extracurricular activities. And don’t be afraid to add your personal style and voice to your writing!

Be direct.

You only have a couple of paragraphs to tell us that you’re not only qualified to attend UIUC, but you're also ready for the challenge and will make the most of your experience. Choose your words wisely.

Be focused.

It's not necessary for you to repeat information that’s already elsewhere in your application. Stay focused on explaining how those credentials and qualifications will lead to a successful future here.

Be professional.

Submitting a sloppy-looking essay with spelling errors and glaring mistakes sends us the message that you’re not serious about UIUC. Proofread your essays and ask your counselor, a friend, or a parent to take a second look.