Home > Financial Aid > College Scholarships > Scholarship Application Strategies > Tips for Formatting Scholarship Application Essays

Tips for Formatting Scholarship Application Essays

When you are preparing a scholarship application essay, make sure to pay as much attention to the scholarship essay format as you do to the content. Individuals who judge college scholarship essay contests look very closely at the essays they receive and evaluate them based on content, writing style, adherence to instructions and format. The first thing they notice is the format. As you know, you never get a second chance to make a first impression so be sure the format of your essay is both professional and visually appealing.

Scholarship Essay Formatting Tips:

  • The most important tip is to be certain that you follow all formatting instructions specified for the scholarship contest.
  • Print your essay on high quality paper. Most applicants will use standard copy paper and your essay will stand out if it is on a better type of paper.
  • Use a font that is professional in appearance and easy to read. Recommended fonts include: Arial, Calibri, Tahoma, Times New Roman and Verdana. Do not use a script or “cute” style font.
  • Do not use a font that is too small or too large. If a font size is not specified in the instructions, use a size between 10 and 12 points for the body of your essay and 14 points for the heading.
  • If your printer is running low on ink, replace the toner or ink jet before printing your final copy.
  • Make sure there are no smudges or unnecessary creases on the paper.
  • Do not fold the essay or application form. Use an envelope large enough to hold all documents without folding them unless the instructions specify a smaller envelope.
  • Make sure your essay is free of typos, grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
  • Even if you have proofread your essay several times, get someone else to proofread it before you send it in.

Latest College & Financial Aid News

Profane Professor Recorded Berating Student, Dropping F-Bomb

April 17, 2018

by Susan Dutca

A New Jersey community college professor allegedly shouted obscenities at a politically-conservative student during a sociology lecture on sexual harassment, which has ignited complaints about the college being a "liberal atmosphere where alternative political viewpoints are not tolerated." According to other students, this incident was "one of the many disagreements" that took place over the course of the semester. [...]

Gun-Toting College Girl Faces Backlash for Grad Photo

April 10, 2018

by Susan Dutca

Photo obtained by ABC News.

A gun-toting Tennessee college senior showed her support for President Trump and guns while holding her shirt up to reveal her handgun in her graduation photos to "show who [she is] as a person." The photo, which went viral on Twitter, gained both positive and negative feedback - some of which claimed she was "brandishing a firearm for a photo shoot or showing it off to try and look cool." [...]

Student Sends Flirtatious, Then Menacing Emails to Professor

April 3, 2018

by Susan Dutca

A professor at the University of California at Santa Cruz believed she was "unstalkable" up until a student of hers began sending messages that were at first flirtatious and ultimately turned to threats of rape and murder. Much of the #MeToo conversation in higher education revolves around educators who "harass" or "target" students; but some educators themselves actually become vulnerable to harassment by their own students and remain silent out of a sense of guilt, embarrassment, and often the fear of losing their jobs. [...]