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Thread: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

  1. #1
    Comrade therealwindycity's Avatar
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    Default List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    It seems like a large part of the activity in applying right now is asking for help with Statement of Purpose editing. The people who have posted in this thread are willing to help review and offer constructive advice, so applicants, feel free to send a PM to any of the following people and ask if they're still available and if so, what their preferred format is.

    therealwindycity (USA), coop52 (USA), Teishou (USA), Lianwen (USA), word (USA), lilyanphino (USA), aayl1 (UK), OdysseyOfNoises (?), documentarian (?), Merkypie (USA?, prefers google docs), wicket (Australia, prefers email), Japanna (?)

    Please be sure to give us a few days' turnaround, too. The application deadlines are:

    Jamaica: Nov. 22
    Australia, Canada, UK: Nov. 29
    South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago: Nov. 30
    New Zealand, USA: Dec. 3 (US application deadline extended)
    Ireland: Dec. 6

    General points of advice:

    • Try to stick to as many concrete examples as possible. Everyone who applies to JET has had some sort of interaction with Japanese culture that sparked their interest/dream of living in Japan; the important thing is to show what you've done to act on that interest - hosting exchange students, studying the language, volunteering, taking Japan-related classes, participating in school clubs or Japan-related events, etc. There are probably more than you think.
    • Be specific about what you plan to contribute to JET ("internationalization" is a very vague goal) and how you plan to deal with the problems that you'll inevitably face in Japan (which browsing this forum will probably give you some idea of ...).
    • Even if you don't have Japan experience, try to spin your international interest as something more than just "it seems like it would be interesting" or "I dream of going to Japan and becoming an ambassador for change."
    • Remember that this is a job application, and you need to demonstrate why it would be beneficial to JET to hire you, and not just why it would be an amazing experience for you.


    As word has mentioned, we are happy to offer advice, but we would be thrilled if you joined us on the rest of the site as well. We'd love to hear your opinions in the Lounge/Japanese language study areas (many of us are bored at work, after all), and you might get a better picture of what an ALT's day-to-day life might be like. Applications are usually stronger when they show that the applicant has really considered the difficulties of working as an ALT and presented specific ways that they plan to overcome those problems.
    Last edited by therealwindycity; November 19th, 2013 at 09:13.

  2. #2
    chill yo coop52's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I can read stuff.

  3. #3

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I'm available to read. I'm a bit strict though.
    いいみで

  4. #4
    disobedient avocado Lianwen's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I can read too, but it might be a day or two turnaround.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lianwen View Post
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    how many more threads in which BJ declares his love for lianwen do we need?

  5. #5
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I had sworn off helping new applicants after having a bad time with a particularly self-assured one, but I'm feeling a bit better about it all now, and with the closure of "Aspiring" on Official, am anxious to encourage new folks to give us a shot, so... I'll help! I may have a longer turnaround depending on my schedule, and MG and I are preparing to move, but I'll try to make time for ya, *especially* if I like you!
    Last edited by word; October 2nd, 2013 at 16:57.
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  6. #6
    Lost in a Strange Land lilyanphino's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I'll be happy to look over some, but it might take a day or two for a response.

  7. #7
    Billy Bigbollocks aayl1's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I'd also be happy to look over SOPs. Not the most regular of posters here, but I'm not bad at critiquing.

  8. #8

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Are there any from the UK who would be willing to look over personal statements? I understand the criteria are slightly different and would appreciate the viewpoint of someone who applied from the UK. Still, general critique is welcome so I shall be messaging some of you shortly

  9. #9
    Billy Bigbollocks aayl1's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I'm from the UK, and will take a look at it for you.

  10. #10

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    As far as I'm aware the only difference between JET and a similar job is that you have to address the cultural exchange aspect. Otherwise your aim is to present yourself as capable and professional, as well as being flexible/open-minded enough to deal with moving to Japan (often to a rather remote part of it). This would seem pretty universal, can anyone from the US or other countries elaborate if there is a difference?

  11. #11

    Default

    Both the US and UK sops should cover the same basic material, but I think the UK had a more specific set of questions to answer, as well as a different length limit. Almost all of the UK sops I read were broken down by question, which seemed like a terrible thing to do to me. (Makes it seem like you can't segue.)

    That said, anyone should be able to read the prompt and tell the applicant if it was answered.
    Last edited by Antonath; October 3rd, 2013 at 09:46.
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  12. #12

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Oh, I didn't do that :P. They did ask specific questions but I just chose to read that as "address these points in your statement".

  13. #13
    Billy Bigbollocks aayl1's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Quote Originally Posted by Jiggit View Post
    Oh, I didn't do that :P. They did ask specific questions but I just chose to read that as "address these points in your statement".
    Yeah, same. I thought that was what they meant by it, anyway, as it seemed rather childish to just flat out answer each question separately.

  14. #14
    Billy Bigbollocks aayl1's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    These are the criteria for the US and UK respectively, for those curious souls;

    Quote Originally Posted by US
    No more than two sides of A4, size 12, double spaced

    You should incorporate all of the following points in your essay:

    • Relevant Experience: Describe applicable experiences, professional skills, relevant interests and personal qualities, and how you feel these will be useful to you as an ALT or CIR.
    • Motivation for Participation: State why you wish to go to Japan and participate in the JET Program and why you are interested in the position for which you are applying. Also address what you hope to gain, both personally and professionally, and what effect you hope to have on the Japanese community and internationally as a result of your participation in the JET Program.
    Quote Originally Posted by UK
    800 - 1000 words, size 12 double spaced

    It should comprise of three main sections, including the following points:
    1) General Statement (Both ALT and CIR applicants)


    • This should set forth your reasons for wishing to participate on the JET Programme.



    2) What can you contribute to the Programme? (Both ALT and CIR applicants)


    • If you have any experience of living abroad for an extended period, what aspect did you find the most difficult to adapt to? Was there any specific problem you had to overcome?
    OR
    • If you have not had any experience of living abroad, do you consider yourself to be adaptable to new circumstances and people? What situations have you found yourself in that have required such adaptation?



    3a) For ALT applicants only: Teaching ideas


    • If you have some teaching experience, what methods of teaching, classroom approaches, etc., have you used, and which have you found the most valuable?
    OR
    • If you have little or no experience, imagine you are in front of a class of 40 students, many of whom are not interested in studying English. How would you go about motivating them? What methods or approaches do you think you might use? What advantages do you think your methods might have?
    3b) For CIR applicants only: Current affairs


    • What political or social issues in the UK do you think a Japanese person is most likely to be interested in and why?
    Last edited by aayl1; October 3rd, 2013 at 09:56.

  15. #15
    Billy Big Bollocks Ini's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Looks like spelling and grammar will be held to a higher standard on the British one. If the Americans can't even spell programme correctly on their own application form I doubt they will be too strict with applicants......
    Great men of action never mind on occasion being ridiculous; in a sense it is part of their job.

  16. #16

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    So for the UK SoP would you recommend trying to fit these questions into a more organic structure or should we play it safe and break it down by question?

  17. #17
    Billy Bigbollocks aayl1's Avatar
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I used a more organic, flowing structure and now I'm on he programme. Make of that what you will.

  18. #18

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Quote Originally Posted by aayl1 View Post
    I used a more organic, flowing structure and now I'm on he programme. Make of that what you will.
    I guess it's time to start rewriting then.

  19. #19
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    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    Not a regular poster on here but am happy to be sent SoPs.

  20. #20

    Default re: List of regular posters who are available to edit SOPs - read OP

    I can read SOPs!

    I WILL DESTROY THEM!!

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