I am applying for the CS Ph.D. program in the USA. While writing my Statement of Purpose (SOP), I realized I have a multitude of accomplishments to convey. For instance, I hold both undergraduate and graduate degrees with high CGPAs, authored 17 publications, accumulated years of teaching experience, worked as a software engineer, and developed numerous tools and packages, everything relevant to my field of study. Now, I am grappling with the challenge of adhering to the word limit typically set by universities, often capped at a maximum of 1000 words (sometimes only 500). I drafted one that contains more than 2500 words. I am genuinely struggling to discern what to include and what not to include, and what the Admission Committee truly values in an LOR. Thanks a lot for your valuable time.

1 Answer 1


You have the wrong idea about the SoP. It isn't a rehash of your past, but a look toward the future. Other things in your application speak to your accomplishments: Letters of recommendations and CV especially. You also send transcripts, so your degrees and courses are clear already.

The SoP should be forward looking. What do you intend to do in graduate study and thereafter. Very brief mentions of things that support those goals can be added, but don't focus on the past.

Most of what you list goes in the CV. Support for your goals and predictions of your success come from letters.

  • Thanks a lot. If you don't mind, can you suggest in 2-3 bullet points what I must include in my LOR that the Admissions Committee really values or search for? (if you have time definitely. Thanks) Commented Nov 22, 2023 at 16:28

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