Statement of Purpose Preparation Guidelines

Your Statement of Purpose should have three sections:

  1. Academic Interests
  • Are there areas of research and/or specific research topics or problems you most intend to pursue? If not pursuing a thesis option, what topics for coursework and an MS Project interest you?
  • Are there any specific faculty members at UMBC that you have identified as conducting research representative of your interests?
  1. Qualifications, Experience, and Motivation for Academic Interests
  • What skills and experience do you have that will enable you to pursue your academic interests? Are there specific professional, academic, or other extracurricular activities which specially prepared you either technically or professionally for your intended graduate studies?
  • Are there specific professional, academic, or other extracurricular experiences that were formative towards deciding your academic interests?
  • Are there particular accomplishments (publications, awards,) which exemplify your capabilities or motivation to pursue graduate studies in your areas of interest?
  1. Career Goals and Motivation for Graduate Studies
  • Why do you want to pursue a graduate degree and/or what do you hope to accomplish in graduate school?
  • What are your long term career goals?
  • Why have you selected UMBC (our department)?
  • Are there specific experiences or circumstances which shaped your personal motivations?
  • Are there other experiences or accomplishments which exemplify your personal traits (e.g. leadership, self-starting) or aspirations?