How To Create A Killer Radiology Personal Statement - RadsResident (2023)

Personal statements in the radiology field are the least effective way to bolster your application. (1) Rarely, do they help an applicant.Occasionally, they hurt the applicant’s case. Regardless, I am aware that the personal statement will often become essential to many viewers of this article who apply to radiology regardless of whatever I say. Therefore, I am creating this blog for anyone that is applying for a radiology related job to learn to create that killer radiology personal statement. And, today I am going to recount some of the basics for creating one. Specifically, I am going to start by explaining the parts of a great radiology personal statement and then give you some general tips that I have learned over the years from blogging and reading many personal statements.

First Paragraph:

The Hook

After having rummaged through thousands of radiology personal statements and writing lots of blogs, I can definitely say that the key paragraph for the reader begins at the beginning. If it is average/boring, I have almost zero desire to read the rest of the statement, especially when you have another 10 more to read that day. Something in the few first few sentences needs to draw the reader in quickly. You are not writing a short story or novel where you can slowly develop your characters and plot. Rather, you need to write using a technique that I like to call the hook. Reel that program director in.

There are several techniques that I have seen over the years. Let’s start by using the writing technique of irony. Notice the irony I chose in the first paragraph of this article. I started by saying personal statements are the least effective way to bolster your application. Whoa, wait a minute! The title of the article is How To Create A Killer Personal Statement. That’s somewhat interesting. The dissonance in that first paragraph draws the reader in.

(Video) How to Write a Personal Statement - Residency (DO's & DON'Ts + Tips!)

So, what other techniques can you use to maintain the interest of the reader? Sometimes quotes can certainly help. Once in a while, I come across a quote that really interests me. I tend to like quotes from Albert Einstein. They tend to be witty and have double meanings. But, there are certainly millions to choose from. A good quote can set the tone for the rest of the personal statement.

Finally, you can write about an interesting theatrical description of a life-altering event that caused you to want to go into radiology. Use descriptive novel-like adjectives and adverbs. Go to town. However, be careful. Don’t choose the same events as everyone else. Read my other blog called Radiology Personal Statement Mythbustersto give you some other ideas about what not to choose!

Tell Why You Are Interested In Radiology

The first paragraph is also an important place to tell the reader why you are interested in radiology. Many times I will read a radiology personal statement and say to myself that was kind of interesting, but why does this person want to go into the radiology field? He/she never quite answers the question and I am left feeling that this person does not know why they want to enter the field. Don’t let that be you!

Second Paragraph:

Explain Any Problems/Issues

I like the applicant to be upfront with the reader rather quickly if there was an issue that may cause a program director or resident to discard an application. It could be addressing something as serious as a former conviction for drunk driving when you were young and stupid. Or, it could be something milder like a questionable quotation from a mentor that you found in your Deans Letter. Either way, you need to explain yourself. Otherwise, the problem/issue can declare itself as a red flag. Subsequently, it can prevent you from getting the interview that you really want.

(Video) Personal Statement - MATCH 2022

Second and Third Paragraphs

Expand Upon Your Application

Let’s say you don’t really have any red flags in your application. Well then, now you can write about some of the things that you accomplished that you want to bring to the attention of your reader. Typically, these may be items in your application that are partially explained in the experience or research sections of the ERAS application but really deserve further emphasis or explanation.

Show Not Tell

In addition, the meat of any personal statement should contain information about what you did. Do not, instead, describe all the characteristics you had to allow you to do it. This is a cardinal mistake I often see in many personal statements. What do I mean by that? If you have been working at NASA on the Webb Space Telescope, you don’t want to say I was a hard worker and was well liked by everybody. Rather you would want to say I spent 1000 hours building the mirror for the telescope constantly correcting for mistakes to such a fine degree that the engineering societies considered it to be almost perfect. And to show you were well liked by everybody, you can say when you were done completing the telescope, NASA held a ticker tape parade for me!!! (Well, that’s probably not the case. But, hopefully, you get the idea.)

Final Paragraph

Time to Sum Up

This can be the most difficult part of writing a personal statement (and blog too!) How do you tie everything together into a tight knot so that everything comes together and makes sense? Well, one thing you can write about is what you will bring to the table if your residency program selects you based on what you have stated in your radiology personal statement. Back to the Webb telescope example: Given my experience with my successful quest for perfection by creating an almost perfect telescope mirror, similarly, I plan to hone my skills to become an incredible radiologist by always learning from others and my fellow clinicians to get as close to perfection as possible.Bottom line. You want to make sure to apply your experiences to the job that you want to get.

General Issues With Editing

1. I have learned a few things about writing over the past years, whether it is blogs, personal statements, letters, or whatever else you need to write. However, the most important is the obsessive need to review and re-review whatever you are writing for editing. It may take 100 edits to get it right!!!

(Video) The Personal Statement | Pearls & Pitfalls

2. Have a friend or a relative read your personal statement to catch errors you may not see. Your brain is trained to already know what you have written. Many times the only way to catch your own mistakes is to have another person read your writings.

3. Also, make sure to the read the personal statement out loud. Sometimes you can only detect errors by listening to what you have actually written. It happened many times when I edited my book Radsresident: A Guidebook For The Radiology Applicant And Radiology Resident

4. Finally, I recommend the use of grammar correcting programs. The one that I would like to bring to your attention is the program called Grammarly. I am an affiliate of Grammarly. However, that is only because I use the program myself for my blogs all the time. It has saved me from really stupid mistakes. One version is for free and corrects simple critical errors. The other uses more complex grammatical corrections and is a paid service. Regardless, either version will assist you in catching those silly errors. In addition, I usually paste my blogs into the Microsoft Word program to correct any other possible errors. I have found both programs to be complementary.

Other Useful Tidbits

Avoid Too Many I Words

When writing a radiology personal statement, try to reduce the usage of the word I for multiple reasons. First, it begins to sound very redundant. Second, you appear selfish. (It’s always about you, isn’t it?) And finally, you want to create the impression that you are going to be a team player, not in the field of radiology just for yourself.

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Active Not Passive Tense

If you want a passage to sound great, make sure to almost always use the active tense, not the passive variety. When using the passive form, the reader has more work to do because he/she has to figure out who is doing the activity. In addition, the environment appears to control you rather than you controlling the environment. And finally, sentences sound more verbose when using the passive tense. Think about the following phrases: The job of creating a computer algorithm was completed over the course of 10 years vs. My colleagues and I created a computer algorithm over the course of 10 years. Which sounds better to you?

Use Sentence Transitions

If you want your personal statement to sound smooth, I find words other than the subject at the beginning of the sentence help to diversify the sound of the individual sentence. Also (notice this transition word!), it allows for a change of idea without being so abrupt.

Don’t Use The Same Word At The Beginning Of Each Sentence

In that same train of thought, try not to use the same word to begin a sentence over and over again. It’s a surefire way to bore the reader!!!

Creating That Perfect Radiology Personal Statement

Now you know some of the rules I would utilize to create an interesting radiology personal statement. Some of these are general rules that I apply to my blog on a weekly basis that I also see in the best personal statements. Therefore, I know that they work well. So, go forth and write that killer radiology personal statement. You now have all the tools you need!!!

(Video) How to Ace Your Radiology Residency Interview


How do you write a personal statement for radiology residency? ›

I believe that my passion for medicine and the field of radiology, my fascination with human anatomy and radiation, combined with my desire to help people, will make me a great radiologist.

What makes a good personal statement for fellowship? ›

The best fellowship personal statements are the ones that reflect both the personal and professional maturity that should come with residency. This means a focused and driven personal statement, one that shows its confidence in being directly and humbly written.

What do you write in a fellowship personal statement? ›

The Personal Statement for Fellowship

In both the residency and fellowship statements you'll need to describe the specific path and reasons that have led you to your chosen specialty or sub-specialty, as well as what you plan to achieve in your career.

Why should I go into radiology? ›

There's a lot to love about radiology. Radiology is one of the ROAD lifestyle specialties, standing for radiology, ophthalmology, anesthesiology, and dermatology. It's not hard to maintain a good work-life balance, and you'll be well compensated for your work, making an average of $427,000 per year.

What does imaging mean in medical terms? ›

Medical Definition of imaging

: the action or process of producing an image especially of a part of the body by radiographic techniques advances in clinical diagnostic imaging cardiac imaging — see magnetic resonance imaging.

How do you end a personal statement for fellowship? ›

The closing paragraph should sum up your enthusiasm for the fellowship as well as what you expect to be able to provide for your target program.

How do I stand out fellowship application? ›

Set your goals, visualize your success, plan, and organize. Furthermore, good letters of recommendation often take some time to write. By asking your recommenders to write you a letter early on in the application process, you will allow them their own time cushion to give you the best personalized letter you can get.

How do you start a fellowship essay? ›

Writing Fellowship Essays
  1. Work on your opening. The opening sentence (and paragraph) of an essay functions like a fishhook: You want to grab your reader and make him or her pay attention. ...
  2. Be specific and concrete. ...
  3. Keep your audience in mind. ...
  4. Revise, revise, revise. ...
  5. Proofread.

Do personal statements matter residency? ›

The personal statement is used by residency directors to find information that cannot be gleaned from the candidate's grades or CV, such as the candidate's character and motivations, or interesting details that would make them want to meet the candidate in person.

How do you write a killer personal statement? ›

University Applications: How to Write a Killer Personal Statement
  1. Firstly- don't wait to get started! ...
  2. Make a plan BEFORE you start writing. ...
  3. Know what's expected. ...
  4. Perfect the format. ...
  5. Let your personality shine. ...
  6. Show real interest in the subject. ...
  7. Tell them why should they choose you. ...
  8. Get someone to proofread your writing.
Oct 14, 2018

How do I make my personal statement stand out? ›

8 tips for making your personal statement stand out
  1. Structure is key. Structure can make or break your personal statement. ...
  2. Plan ahead. ...
  3. Be original. ...
  4. Explain why you're right for the course. ...
  5. Think about what you want to gain from your course. ...
  6. Include a balance of academic and extracurricular content. ...
  7. Be positive. ...
  8. Proofread.
Jan 13, 2017

How do you introduce yourself in a personal statement? ›

Previous years' top five included:
  1. 'From a young age…'
  2. 'For as long as I can remember…
  3. 'I am applying for this course because…'
  4. 'I have always been interested in…'
  5. 'Throughout my life I have always enjoyed…'

Are radiologists rich? ›

Forty-nine percent of radiologists have a net worth of $2 million or more, according to a new report published by Medscape. The report, “Medscape Physician Wealth and Debt Report 2019,” included survey responses from more than 20,000 physicians representing dozens of specialties.

Do you regret doing radiology? ›

Some 16.7% of radiology residents reported overall career choice regret, but only 6.1% reported regret in their specialty selection. "Among U.S. resident physicians, symptoms of burnout and career choice regret were prevalent, but varied substantially by clinical specialty," Dyrbye and colleagues concluded.

Are radiologists happy? ›

Radiologists are mildly happy at work compared to other physician specialties, according to Medscape's 2019 Radiology Lifestyle, Happiness & Burnout Report, with only 25 percent claiming to be "very or extremely happy" in the workplace.

What are the 5 imaging techniques? ›

Learn more about our five most common modalities for our various types of imaging tests: X-ray, CT, MRI, ultrasound, and PET.

Is medical imaging difficult? ›

Putting the technology into everyday clinical use, however, is challenging because of the complexities of development, testing, and obtaining regulatory approval. Radiology algorithms focus narrowly on a single finding on images from a single imaging modality, for example, lung nodules on a chest CT scan.

Should I put a title on my personal statement? ›

DON'T write your statement with the goal of telling schools what you think they want to hear. Sincerity is important and recognizable. DON'T use quotes or give a title to your statement.

What makes the first sentence a strong opening for this introduction? ›

What makes the first sentence a strong opening for this introduction? The writer uses creativity and humor to engage the reader. The writer ponders childhood to stir up the reader's memories. The writer introduces the topic immediately to inform the reader.

How long does it take to write a personal statement? ›

About 4 hours, spread over two or three days.

Do you say thank you at the end of a personal statement? ›

Full Member. No to the thank you. However, a solid conclusion could be good if you don't turn it into fluff.

Do universities read personal statements? ›

Every personal statement will be read by someone to check that the applicant is applying for the right course” explains PQ. “Many applicants don't do the basic research and assume that a similar course title means similar course content”.

How do you start a Statement of Purpose example? ›

Introduction of SOP: 1st Paragraph
  1. Discuss your long-term goal and connect it with your idea of pursuing the course you are applying to.
  2. Present your understanding of the chosen field and write how you want to contribute to that field.
  3. Explain your background in 2-3 lines and connect it with your future goals.

What makes a fellowship competitive? ›

Letters of Recommendation

Make sure the reader knows where you are in your program and give a brief vision of where you are headed in your career.” someone who really knows your skill set, research or study area, someone who knows you well.

What do fellowships look for in applicants? ›

Applicants believed that interview performance should be the most important factor in fellowship selection, with personal knowledge or a colleague's recommendation of the applicant coming in as the second most important factor.

Why are you interested in this fellowship answer? ›

By articulating a vision for your career or future academic life, it is easier to explain why you have decided to pursue a specific fellowship. Identify the skills and experiences you would gain from the fellowship that would directly help you achieve your professional and academic goals.

How do you write a 500 word scholarship essay? ›

Here's a format you can follow instead.
  1. Hook introduction. ...
  2. Context for the hook. ...
  3. Examples that showcase your strengths. ...
  4. A conclusion that makes it clear you've responded to the essay prompt. ...
  5. Example 500 Word Essay #2. ...
  6. #2 Start your essay with a strong hook statement. ...
  7. #3 Use descriptive language. ...
  8. #4 Stick to the word count.
Feb 16, 2022

How many pages is 28000 characters? ›

The allowed ERAS residency personal statement length is 28,000 characters which equates to about five pages!

How many words should a personal statement residency? ›

Do NOT plagiarize your personal statement. Length; Since one page in length in a Word Doc is not the same as what one page will equal one page in ERAS for personal statement formatting, the key is stick to 750-850 words for your ERAS/residency application personal statement.

How long can residency personal statement be? ›

The essay allows for 28,000 characters – don't even think about it. Admissions officers must read the demographics, transcripts, MSPE, experiences section, personal statement, and letters of recommendation before making a decision. The goal is to make your point and do it concisely.

How do you write a personal statement for a research fellowship? ›

What to Include in Your Personal Statement
  1. Origins of interest in a particular field. ...
  2. Ways in which you have developed your interest. ...
  3. Reasons for changes in your interests and goals. ...
  4. Reasons for inconsistencies in your record. ...
  5. Special skills you have developed, relevant to the planned research.

What do you write in a fellowship essay? ›

Rather than saying you are excited by policy issues, discuss a particular policy issue that interests you. Instead of saying that you are motivated, describe an instance that demonstrates your motivation. Keep your audience in mind. Most fellowship selection committees are comprised of well-educated generalists.

How do you write a personal statement for administrative fellowship? ›

The following are some tips and suggestions to help you write your healthcare administrative fellowship personal statement:
  1. Be specific. ...
  2. Don't use quotations or clichés. ...
  3. Use clear and concise language. ...
  4. Proofread.

How do you write a personal statement for cardiology fellowship? ›

Tell us what you did or did not like about your research and why. Describe what you want to do in the future; is it the same or different than what you have done in the past? Tell us what other life experiences contributed to your passion for cardiology. Importantly, never make something up in your personal statement.

How do you write a future plan for a personal statement? ›

The future plan statement consists of three main components. First, it describes the main long-term and short-term goals. Second, the applicant should define his/her future career in detail. Third, the future plan should list the main steps to reach these goals, including the backup plan.

How long is a personal statement for research? ›

Most Personal Statements are a maximum of 1000 words in length or less. That means you have to reduce (in the best sense of the word) your story to fit those requirements, hence the necessity of very clear and concise writing.

How do you write a 500 word scholarship essay? ›

Here's a format you can follow instead.
  1. Hook introduction. ...
  2. Context for the hook. ...
  3. Examples that showcase your strengths. ...
  4. A conclusion that makes it clear you've responded to the essay prompt. ...
  5. Example 500 Word Essay #2. ...
  6. #2 Start your essay with a strong hook statement. ...
  7. #3 Use descriptive language. ...
  8. #4 Stick to the word count.
Feb 16, 2022

Why do you want to apply for fellowship? ›

Research – Fellowships are great for students who wish to pursue research in a specific field. The award will not only provide you with financial assistance, it can also add credibility to your research and inspire other organizations and foundations to fund you as well.

How do you write a personal statement for a healthcare job? ›

Tips for Writing a Personal Statement
  1. Reflect on your academic and extracurricular experiences and how they have shaped your motivations for a career in health care.
  2. Create a list of experiences that represent the evolution of your path to a career in health care.
  3. Identify key people (mentors, faculty, supervisors...)

How do you write a personal statement for healthcare? ›

What to write about. The personal statement is your opportunity to tell your chosen universities why you would like to study medicine, and explain what skills and experience you possess which would make you a good doctor. Remember that your personal statement should be individual to you rather than a series of clichés.

How do you write a statement of purpose for masters in health informatics? ›

My goal is to pursue my studies again in a field in which I really want to give my best and with which I can build a career. Healthcare informatics is one such field in which I can see myself working on interesting projects and have several opportunities to develop my skills.

Is it hard to get a cardiology fellowship? ›

The fellowship match process for Cardiology, an increasingly saturated subspecialty with an ever-expanding applicant pool, is extremely competitive.

What do fellowship directors look for? ›

Applicants believed that interview performance should be the most important factor in fellowship selection, with personal knowledge or a colleague's recommendation of the applicant coming in as the second most important factor.

Do personal statements matter residency? ›

The personal statement is used by residency directors to find information that cannot be gleaned from the candidate's grades or CV, such as the candidate's character and motivations, or interesting details that would make them want to meet the candidate in person.


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