Video Version: https://youtu.be/jGuvasISea4
Disclaimer: This guide is based on my experience helping my students. I am not involved in the EAE assessment process in any ways.
I have helped students with their EAE since 2016 when it was first introduced, and since then I have not heard of a single student who failed his/her EAE because of a poorly written write-up. Focus more on your Portfolio and Interview, and just use the guiding principles in this article to write your write-up.
Now I’m going to share a write-up from one of my students who got through her EAE successfully and use it as the example for this guide.
It is not a perfect write-up and I am sure it can be improved in many ways, but this was what she submitted for her EAE application to Temasek Polytechnic’s Diploma in Accountancy & Finance, and it was good enough to help her get accepted.
I have consistently been the top scorer in class for Principle of Accounts. Taking this subject helped me discover a passion in the accounting world. During my holiday, I interviewed my relatives in the accounting industry and learned about the job scope and challenges that accountants face. One challenge is that there is a monthly closing and filling account and tax deadlines, so they must ensure that all data is up to date. They often have to work beyond office hours to meet these deadlines, but I’m still interested because I find it all to be challenging in a satisfying way and very exciting.– 600-character (Aptitude & Interest)
I held 3 leadership roles in school. As Badminton Captain, Vice-President in the Peer Support Board, and a Sports Leader, I had many experiences leading and picking up various soft skills to work as a team. As IC of my CCA VIA, I contacted external organisations, planned the event, and took charge of the finances. As Vice-President I led the Communications department and got to execute day camps for my peers with special needs in the school. Lastly, being a sports leader allowed me to take part in organising events and games such as the sports meet and interclass games. I received the Model Learner Award consecutively for the past 3 years in recognition of my consistent exemplary attitude towards learning and studies. Being in a triple Maths class (E-Math, A-math, POA) gave me a platform to strengthen my numeracy skills. This made me sure that I want to join the accounting world. I wish to learn more in this subject and I am eager to apply these skills in accountancy and finance.– 1000-character (Talent & Achievements)
You’re going to have a hard time if you try to copy it, so let me explain how I guided her.
Before that, I need you to know that this is definitely one of the better write-ups I could find. It is not an average write-up so don’t be intimidated by it. Read it and just focus on learning the guiding principles to help you write yours.
The following points apply for both the 600-character (Aptitude & Interest) and 1000-character (Talent & Achievements) write-ups.
Straight to the Point
Whoever is reading your write-up is probably going to read hundreds of write-ups, so you are going to want to make this person’s job easier.
The best way to do that is to go straight to your point, beginning with your strongest one.
Both of her first sentences do that.
“I have consistently been the top scorer in class for Principle of Accounts.”
Impressive achievement that is directly relevant to the Diploma in Accountancy & Finance course.
“I held 3 leadership roles in school.”
Impressive achievement that says a lot about her leadership abilities and by extension her character as well.
Don’t Waste Their Time (and your Characters)
There is no need for you to write, “I am deeply and whole-heartedly passionate about learning accountancy and finance. It has been my passion for many years since I was in secondary one.”
I don’t know how the person reading your write-up would feel, but to me, that sounds like you have nothing real to show so you’re just trying to fill up the word count.
Talk about evidences and actions. What have you done to explore your interest? What makes you so sure that this is a passion of yours?
Write About Evidences of Your Passion
600-character (Aptitude & Interest)
“During my holiday, I interviewed my relatives in the accounting industry.”
That shows that she has taken the initiative to learn more about the course beyond what is just written on the polytechnic’s website.
“One challenge is that there is a monthly closing and filling account and tax deadlines”
The person reading this write-up is most likely someone with background in accountancy and finance, so he or she would know that this is a real problem. It helps to show that my student really did interview someone.
“They often have to work beyond office hours to meet these deadlines, but I’m still interested because I find it all to be challenging in a satisfying way and very exciting.”
Maybe she ‘say only’ because she hasn’t experienced it. Maybe she’ll change her mind when she really experiences the work. But at least she’s aware of the challenges and still wants to apply for this course. Many students might not even be aware of this problem that they will face in the future.
Share Your Experiences
1000-character (Talent & Achievements)
“As IC of my CCA VIA, I contacted external organisations, planned the event, and took charge of the finances.”
She is actually the Captain of the badminton school team, but she already mentioned it in the beginning of the write-up. Instead, she elaborated on her role as the person in-charge for her co-curricular activity’s (CCA) Values-in-Action (VIA) project instead – because it has direct relevance to the course that she was applying for (she took charge of the finances).
Be Relevant Whenever Possible
“Being in a triple Maths class (E-Math, A-math, POA) gave me a platform to strengthen my numeracy skills. This made me sure that I want to join the accounting world.”
The Diploma in Accountancy & Finance is not an easy course to go through. One of the criteria the interviewers were looking for (which she discovered during the interview) was proficiency in mathematics. They were specifically looking for students who did well in maths.
The ironic thing is that this student of mine actually had classmates telling her that she shouldn’t be using EAE because her grades were so good already. They felt that she should have just applied with her O-level results and leave EAE for them with poorer grades.
I’ve talked about that common misunderstanding in this post, but the point here is to try and link what you have back to the course whenever you can.
Don’t Be Humble
If being humble means not sharing your achievements, then the person reading your write-ups will never know about them. Don’t expect the polytechnics to ask or go out of their way to find out what your achievements are.
They are already asking you to share through this write-up.
Your write-up is for you to share as many evidences of your passion/interest and achievements as you can. It is during the interview where they will assess your character and personality based on how you answer your questions.
Put together, both of her write-ups paint a picture of a student who not only meets the academic requirement of an Accountancy & Finance course, but one who is also aware of the real challenges that an accountant faces in the working world. Her knowledge goes beyond what is just written in the polytechnic’s website. In addition, she is a well-rounded individual as evident by her numerous leadership roles and experiences in the school.
Don’t worry if you don’t have as many points as her. There is always that top 5% of high achievers that most of us can’t compete with (even my own write-up wasn’t as good as hers when I was a student myself – mine was called JPSAE back then).
You don’t need to be the best in order to get into the course.
You just need to be good enough.
Focus on what you have and use the guiding principles above to complete your write-ups. If you need help with the other parts of EAE, here are some relevant articles for you:
All the best!