The top 10 most common UCAS personal statement opening lines

This article covers:

  • The top 10 most common opening lines for personal statements
  • How important is the Medicine personal statement opening line?
  • 5 tips for your Medicine personal statement opening line and opening paragraph
  • Examples of Medicine personal statement opening lines and opening paragraphs
  • A Medicine Personal Statement Checklist


UCAS have revealed the top 10 most common opening lines used in the 700,000 personal statements (all courses) sent to them in 2015. While limited to 2015, it still serves as a good reference for future years.

Top 10 most common UCAS personal statement (for all courses including Medicine) opening lines for 2015:

    1. From a young age, I have (always) been [interested in/fascinated by]… [1,779]

    2. For as long as I can remember, I have… [1,451]

    3. I am applying for this course because… [1,370]

    4. I have always been interested in… [927]

    5. Throughout my life, I have always enjoyed… [310]

    6. Reflecting on my educational experiences… [257]

    7. Nursing is a very challenging and demanding [career/profession/course]… [211]

    8. Academically, I have always been… [168]

    9. I have always wanted to pursue a career in… [160]

    10. I have always been passionate about… [160]

How important is it to create an original Medicine personal statement opening line?

The answer may surprise you – not very much. It is good to try and be original with an opening line, but this is not something to obsess over. It is your Medicine personal statement as an overall piece of writing that is important. This includes:

1) The structure and grammar of your Medicine personal statement. How well the personal statement flows.

2) How well your personal statement displays your commitment and reasons for studying Medicine

3) How well your Medicine personal statement shows your personal qualities which make you suitable for studying Medicine.

5 tips writing your Medicine personal statement opening line or opening paragraph

1) This can often be the most challenging part of your personal statement to write. If you are struggling for inspiration for you Medicine personal statement opening line than writing the rest of your statement first can get the ball rolling.

2) Do not obsess over creating an entirely original opening line. Try and avoid some of the most common opening lines, for example, the ones listed above, but if it really does fit in your case then that is fine.

3) As a general rule avoid quotes – they use up the character count and admission tutors want to hear what you have to say not someone else.

4) Humour is very difficult to get right, and the reader may have a different sense of humour as you. For this reason, it is generally a good idea to avoid humour in a Medicine personal statement opening paragraph or main text. The same goes for sarcasm, which is very difficult for a reader to recognise in written text.

5) Similarly, be extremely cautious in using controversial or outlandish statements. These are generally best avoided

Examples of Medicine personal statement opening lines/paragraph

In this article:, we analyse a Medicine personal statement that was accepted for interviews at all four Medical schools the candidate applied to. The candidate was successful at interview and went on to receive an offer to study Medicine at all four of these medical schools. You will see that the candidate used a typical opening line, opening paragraph and even a standard conclusion in their Medicine personal statement.

Despite, the typical opening line the Medicine personal statement as a whole was excellent and showed that they were a strong candidate. Here is a checklist of things that this applicant’s Medicine personal statement did well. This also serves as an essential checklist for things that all Medicine personal statements should include:

1) Excellent grammar (anything less in a Medicine personal statement is unacceptable)

2) A clear structure – this includes an introduction and a closing for the personal statement. For the main body of text, similar pieces of information are grouped into paragraphs and not scattered throughout the personal statement.

3) The Medicine personal statement does not simply list information, it illustrates points. For example, it does not just explain what the candidate did at work experience but what they learned and why this makes them want to study Medicine

4) Clear reasons for why the candidate wants to study Medicine

5) Excellent examples of work experience in caring and/or medical roles and what was learned from these experiences

6) Clearly describes personal attributes the candidate has which make them a good candidate to study Medicine

7) Excellent examples of extracurricular activities and outside interests

How can Medicine answered help you in your Medicine personal statement?

Medicine answered offer one of the best Medicine personal statement review services available. A professional editor and a fully qualified doctor, who themselves received all four UCAS offers to study Medicine, will check and correct your personal statement. We go beyond the typical reviews of just grammar and structure. We discuss the overall strength of your entire Medicine application and ways to improve it. We suggest what you may be asked in interview and more.