Perspective Essay

Perspective Essay

perspectives essay

A perspective essay gives you the opportunity to voice your thoughts, ideas, and your world view. You might be required to write a perspectives essay when applying to some leadership programs, Executive programs, Master’s degrees, or even undergraduate programs.

In our years of offering personal statement editing services, we have learned some insights about the perspective essay. In this post, we discuss the Harvard Kennedy School perspective essay and the brown different perspectives essay.  We also offer tips for writing a Brown perspective essay. You will also find the format of a perspective essay.

Harvard Kennedy School Perspectives Essay

The Harvard Kennedy School perspective essay is describing a time when interactions with others caused you to change your mind or expand your point of view. The aim of this prompt is to challenge you to think of how some life experiences have expanded your viewpoint.

Human beings are creatures of habit. Left on our own, we might never change our perspectives or behaviors. The HKS perspective essay is the chance to reflect upon an interaction with others that expanded or changed your point of view.

How to Write the HKS Perspective Essay

In case you are writing the Harvard Kennedy School perspectives essay, it might feel overwhelming. Maybe you are looking for a momentous incidence and there does not seem to be one in your life. Instead of trying to thing about one big event, think of the small encounters you have had in your life.

Examples of encounters include a conversation with a friend or stranger, an unforeseen incident or overcoming a big or small challenge. The content of the event need not stress you a lot. Instead, focus on how that incident changed your perspective for the better.

Choosing a Perspective Essay Topic

A client recently came to me stressed. He had five days to apply to the HKS MC/MPA program. He was anxious about not meeting the deadline. He also said he was having problems with one of the employees. The employee was a high performing one, but she did not like dressing in formal clothes. So the workers was usually in casual clothes. I suggested that maybe this experience was what we needed to focus on in our perspectives essay.

Ultimately, we ended up writing a perspective essay on the troublesome employee. The manager realized that dress code does not affect productivity in any way. Later that year, the department relaxed the dress code and to the manager’s amazement, the productivity spiked.

You see, finding a perspectives essay topic is not as difficult as it sounds. You just need to be reflective of your everyday interactions. If you remain quiet long enough, you will realize that the perspective essay topic you are struggling with is right before you.

Brown Different Perspectives Essay

Brown University’s different perspectives essay is an example of an undergraduate perspective essay.  The prompt asks students to reveal a time they were challenged by a perspective that differed from their own and how they responded.

How to Write Brown Different Perspectives Essay

We are faced with circumstances that challenge our perspectives every day. It might be a co-worker with differing religious beliefs. It could also be a sibling with different approach of raising kids than our own. The challenge is to identify the one incidence you want to discuss.

Our advice here is to start with a questionnaire. Identify 5 experiences that have challenged your viewpoint in the last 4 years. The recency of the incidence might help you recall the details better. Once you have a list, identify the one experience you want to discuss. Boom! You now have your perspective essay topic.

The next phase of writing the Brown different perspectives essay is to enumerate how you responded to a perspective that differed from your own. When faced with a different viewpoint, we can dismiss it or welcome it.

Our Response to Differing Perspectives

Our natural inclination is to stand our grand and insist that our perspective is the better one. This response is borne out of our fear of stepping out of our mental comfort zone. Welcoming a perspective is never easy. Yet sometimes, we can see the logic. It might also be that we deeply resonate with the new perspective and are willing to adopt it in our life.

There is no right or wrong way to respond to a different perspective. The important thing is to understand why you responded the way you did. The admissions board is not looking for a specific answer. Feel free to discuss your response as best as you can remember.

In case you are struggling to write the Brown different perspectives essay, take heart. You might not nail it in the first or second draft. But if you keep going, you sure are likely to land a perspectives essay topic that you will be excited about.

Example of a Brown University Different Perspective Essay

I was panting. It was in the middle of the day and the phone was ringing. I was to have a brunch with an old friend. But in the last minute, she changed the venue we had chosen. You see, I am a linear thinker and I like to have control of things. Small changes like last minute schedule changes might throw me off balance.

 As I was being stressed about what I would do next, my friend started calling. My anxiety shot to the roof because inwardly, I felt I had lost control. I then decided to call another friend whom I knew always seemed unruffled. She calmed me down and suggested that maybe I might benefit from the change of venue.  She hinted I was fighting the best I could to remain in my comfort zone.

 The meeting ended up being very enriching. Although I was not in control, things went smoothly. I do not think I ever will be the one to welcome last minute changes with open arms. But I also learnt that I do not have to have control all the times. Stepping out of my comfort zone that day did me a lot of good.

Tips for Writing A Brown Different Perspective Essay

Focus on the Tension

Unlike in the above example, we rarely change our perspectives that fast Difficult conversations ensue, and we might even fall out with our friends and family. The Brown different perspective essay does not have to have a happy ending.

Social interactions are rarely wrapped up beautifully. They are messy and it is alright to talk about this messiness in your perspective essay. Discuss the tension of facing a different viewpoint than your own. You might even want to go into the details of the conversations.

Discuss the Lesson Learnt

Whether we change the other’s perspective, or they change ours, we are likely to learn something from the encounter. Remember to reflect on this encounter in your different perspectives essay. The best place to put your lessons is the paragraph before the conclusion.

Revealing what you learnt presents you as someone who is capable of reflection. Our ability to reflect affects the level of clarity in our lives. Those who can reflect and learn from their experiences are likely to have more insights going forward.

Perspective Essay Format

A perspective essay is no different from other types of essays. It needs to have an introduction, body, and conclusion.

The introduction of the perspective essay should pique the reader’s interest. This is your start your story. Yet, do not give too much at this point that you quench the reader’s determination to go on.

The body of the perspective essay is where you go deep into your experience. Reveal the tension of confronting a perspective different from yours. Discuss the conversations you had with the other person or people. The body is also where you reflect on the lessons you learned from the experience. Be as comprehensive as possible while being mindful of the word count.

The conclusion is where you recap the facts of the story. Review the experience in brief and what you learnt. You might also shed insights into what the experience means for you going forward. For instance, your experience might mean you will strive to gather all the information before making a decision. If this is so, include it in your conclusion.

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