Applications

How to make your ScotGrad application a success

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Use our tried and tested tips to avoid basic application mistakes: 

  • First, use our hints and tips page. 
  • Remember what the application form is for. Demonstrate that you have the skills and qualities required for the role.
  • Write your responses offline first to avoid losing your answers if the website times out.
  • Give yourself plenty of time to complete your application before the closing date, including leaving enough time for us to respond to any queries you have about the placement if you need to contact us

Use the 'STAR' format when articulating your experience:

  • Situation – set the context. Was it during a part-time job? A final degree presentation at university?
  • Task – explain what was required of you and what you were trying to achieve.
  • Activity – evidence what you did and remember to be specific!
  • Result – remember to explain how the situation played out and the end result, e.g. if it involved raising money for charity, how much did you raise? If you were working to a deadline, did you meet the deadline?

Strong examples also include what you learnt from the experience, and what you would do differently next time if relevant. This approach demonstrates self-awareness and adaptability. 

  • Pay attention to the accuracy and quality of your application; from the spelling to the grammar, to presentation. Ask a trusted third party to proof-read it. Avoid relying on the spellcheck and/or auto-correct functions. 
  • Read your application out loud. Does it sound natural? Would you be convinced by the evidence if you were reading it objectively? 
  • Use professional language throughout. Remember your audience. 
  • Enquire about the status of your application if you haven't heard back within two weeks of the closing date, but don’t pester the company for feedback immediately.
  • Take feedback graciously. You can always learn from it and use it to make your next application better.
  • A potential employer may look you up on social media to get a picture of who you are. Keep this in mind when posting content to make sure your pages are suitable and represent you well. Adapt your privacy settings accordingly. 

Remember, you can contact your Careers Service at university for expert advice and one-to-one sessions on applications, interviews, and much more!