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Confused about how to write a perfect Harvard essay? Well! An essay writing is no less than an art. Instead, this is the category you need to master right from your school level to that of University or higher.

Harvard University is one of the most reputed educational institutions in the world. It is known for its quality of teaching. Moreover, it is one of the oldest establishments where people target higher learning.

Most of the universities and colleges around the world prefer the writing style of Harvard University. The extremely open-ended essays of Harvard style are in good use. 

The essay writing skill is a key concern when it is about academic achievement. With such skill, one can have a quick solution to essay writing problems and help an individual benefit in the long run.

In-depth research about the subject is a must. The examples of the descriptions and the samples help to structure a perfect Harvard essay. You can get a good idea through Harvard essay prompts.

Top 3 Harvard Essay Prompts

The students must submit their application in either of the three ways. It includes Universal College Application (UCA), Common Application, or Coalition Application. As a response to one of the prompts by the application mentioned above systems. 

Harvard University wants the applicants to submit an essay of an appropriate length. The length of the essay may differ according to the course. But, along with the primary essay, the student can submit another essay. It is optional, and one can treat it as a part of the Harvard supplement.

  • Prompt 1 (Optional)- The applicant or the student may also have an intellectual life. It is an extension of their academic life. You may list your additional activities which no one has mentioned. It may include online courses, self-directed projects, research programs, etc. All must be within the limit of 150 words.

  • Prompt 2 (compulsory) – You must have some extracurricular activities. Student can elaborate the same in the essay. This can include your work experiences if any. All these must be between 50- 150 words.


  • Prompt 3 (Optional) – There is a provision to include an additional essay. It is mostly applicable when the candidate feels that the college application forms do not have enough space to convey vital information.

Some common mistakes to avoid while writing a Harvard essay

Harvard doesn't wish to see certain mistakes in the essay at the time of admission. The applicants must avoid these errors when they are on the verge of writing the essay.

  • Harvard is all about accuracy. It is the reason why the authority will not tolerate any grammatical error. Each student must avoid the same.

  • Some individuals have a habit of listing a long list of extracurricular activities. But, have never participated in it in full swing. They must have joined and left after few days. The University will not tolerate such inclusion in the essay.

  • Including the Letter of Recommendation (LOR) from the individuals who do not know you is also a common mistake. Some candidates mention the name of either the celebrities or politicians in the LOR list. But, that goes for verification. Naturally, it fails, and the candidature comes on hold.


  • Exaggeration of the award and achievements can be something that Harvard may not consider. The Harvard outline provides much more detail on it.


  • Few candidates display some statements which do not have any sense. For example – ‘An impact of online games on violent behavior ‘. This particular statement has not literary sense.


  • Too much use of Thesaurus creates a negative impression on the authority. Usually, people use it to make the essay sound more sophisticated. But nothing is good when overdone. 


  • The monotonous tone of essay writing is a negative point. Some students tend to explain the same point repeatedly. However, it won't be allowed here. The student must write new facts in every sentence.


  • Going off the topic is another mistake most of the students make. If you are writing about the main subject of a topic, stick to that. Don't bring any other factors that can create confusion for the reader.


  • Include clarity in your essay. Do not use too many flattering words and sentences that can make the simple matter complex. You can also draw the logical links with the statement that is present in the essay.


  • Plagiarism is not allowed in Harvard essays. It will be a major issue for the paper to get rejected. The student must repeatedly check before submission.

How to write a perfect Harvard essay?

Students usually take a reference from an excellent paper to have an idea of the concept. But even a high-scored article may not be enough. Here are some wonderful tips that will guide you. It is equally important to understand the notion at first. Here are some simple tips for correctly composing a Harvard essay.


Let your reader know about the actual topic of the essay. In this section, you must let the readers know about the real context of the paper. It means the establishment of the frame that will drive you to the main body. 

For example, if you are writing about the amendment on working women's rights, the context will be totally on the working women's rights. It may include the legal rights of active women. It may also have its benefits.

You may give some facts in short that will be explained later in the essay body. The writer may also raise several questions which the reader may think about while reading the essay. It boosts the eagerness of the reader to read the rest of the paper.


The essay's body will be an elaboration of the points that you have mentioned in the introduction. If you have raised any questions in the introduction, the essay's body must answer those questions.

Students can use examples and illustrations in support of a statement. It will make the essay body authentic. The readers will get an idea about the topic. Sometimes hard theory may be difficult to understand. But case studies can make the process easy and simple to understand.

The three major questions of what? How? and Why? About the subject is vital. The body must cover all these three questions. The first question will anticipate the reader's thoughts—the second question, ‘how', give facts on where the thesis stands. The problem ‘why' will speak about the interpretation of the matter. Also, it is essential to explain why readers will take your claim.


Concluding an essay is again a vital phenomenon. When it is about the conclusion of the Harvard essay, statements must be much more specific. It must include a recap of everything you have mentioned in the body of the paper.  

Here, the writer doesn't need to put any additional information. The conclusion will be all about giving an excellent revision to the reader's mind. Here, the most critical task will be to outline the detail. Some people also name it as a summarization. 

You can also conclude with a powerful phrase. It will boost the value of the content. The conclusion must convince the reader. Harvard would appreciate it if you state your thesis in few lines. 



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