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Monday Morning Essay Tip: Never Use “Etc.”

As a general rule, “etc.” should never appear in the text of your MBA application essays. Consider the following sentences:

  1. I helped draft prospectuses, analyze key company data, value companies, etc.
  2. I look forward to courses such as “Small Business Management,” “Leading Teams,” “Multiparty Negotiations,” etc.

In the first example, “etc.” replaces information that the reader values. The reader cannot make the leap and just assume where the writer’s experiences lead and what they include. In the second example, “etc.” trivializes the school’s resources and may even suggest to the admissions committee that the applicant is just too lazy or disinterested to properly do his/her research.

We are at a loss to think of one instance in which “etc.” could be used appropriately in a business school essay. Very simply, ensure your essays do not include this term.



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