Essays About Character: Top 5 Examples and 9 Prompts

If you’re writing an essay about character, below are helpful examples of essays about character with prompts to inspire you further.

When we say that a person has character, we usually refer to one’s positive qualities such as moral fiber, spiritual backbone, social attitudes, mental strength, and beliefs. But not to be mistaken with mere personality, character goes beyond the sum of all good traits. Instead, it demonstrates and applies these qualities in interacting with people, acting on responsibilities, and responding to challenges. 

Character, hence, cannot be evaluated by a single action or event. Instead, it manifests in a pattern and through consistency.

Read on to find essays and prompts to help you create an essay with rich insights. 

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1. How 5 CEOs Hire For Character by Chris Fields

“You have to be a good person with a good heart. Of course, you have to be qualified, educated and skilled, that goes without saying – or it should – but your next candidate can’t be a bad person because CEOs are looking for character.”

The essay compiles insights from famous billionaire CEOs who underscore the importance of recruiting people with good character. It shows the upward trend among companies seeking qualifications beyond education and professional experience and looking more into the heart of people. You might also be interested in these essays about courage.

2. The Character Of Leadership by Brian K. Cooper et. al

“…[L]eadership that achieves results goes beyond how to be, and becomes how to do; this type of leadership is all about character. So in other words, in order to get things done personally and organizationally, one first needs to get in touch with his or her character.”

Character in leadership could translate to benefits beyond the organization, society, or the world. The essay is based on a study of the three underlying dimensions of leadership character: universalism, transformation, and benevolence. 

3. When Proof Of Good Moral Character Helps An Immigration Application—Or Doesn’t by Ilona Bray, J.D.

“Demonstrating good moral character is an extremely important part of many immigration cases, but it is not required in all of them. In fact, providing proof of your accomplishments to the court could hurt your immigration case in some instances.”

Showing good moral character is a common requirement for immigrants seeking to be naturalized citizens in a different country. This article gets into the nitty gritty on how one can best prove good moral character when facing immigration officers.

4. What Are the 24 Character Strengths? by Sherri Gordon

“Knowing a person’s character strengths provides a lens through which psychologists, educators, and even parents can see not only what makes a person unique, but also understand how to help that person build on those strengths to improve situations or outcomes.”

The concept of character strengths aims to help people focus on their strengths to lead healthy and happy life. Understanding character strengths meant being more equipped to use these strengths to one’s advantage, whether toward academic access or overcoming adversities.

5. The Five Character Traits The Best Investors Share by Richard Thalheimer 

“… [Y]ou have to be able to pick the right stocks. That’s where talent, intellect, knowledge and common sense come in. Of course, if you can’t control your emotions, and you get fearful and sell every time the market drops, all that talent, knowledge, intellect and common sense go out the window.”

Having an eye for the right stocks requires developing five character traits: talent, intellect, knowledge, common sense, and a bias to action. All these could be honed by sharpening one’s knowledge of the current news and financial trends. Developing character as a stock investor also requires a daily routine that allows one to exercise analytical skills.

9 Writing Prompts For Essays About Character

Check out these great prompts about character:

1. What Are Your Character Strengths?

What are the positive character traits you think you have that many people also see in you? List down these strengths and dive deep into each one. To start, you may look into the 24 strengths highlighted in one of the essay examples. Then, identify which ones best suit you. Finally, elaborate on how you or the people around you have benefitted from each.

2. The Importance Of Character

In a world where many are motivated by fame and fortune, how can you convince people that being kind, honest, and courageous trump all life’s material, fleeting desires? Turn this essay into an opportunity to call more people to build good character and keep out of bad habits and actions. 

3. How Household Chores Develop A Child’s Character

Essays About Character: How household chores develop a child’s character
For this prompt, lay down the top benefits children will gain from performing their chores and responsibilities in the household

Tasking children doing household chores can offer benefits beyond enjoying a sparkly clean home. In the long-term, it builds children’s character that can help them lead healthy and happy life. For this prompt, lay down the top benefits children will gain from performing their chores and responsibilities in the household.

4. How Challenges Shape Your Character

Our best selves reveal themselves in the darkest times. You can easily say that obstacles are the actual test of our character. So, first, narrate a challenging experience you had in your life. Then, describe how you turned this bad period around to your advantage to strengthen your mind, character, and resilience. 

5. Character Education In Schools

Schools play a vital role in training children to have a strong-minded character and contribute to the good of society. As such, schools integrate character education into their curriculum and structure. In your essay, narrate how much your school values character building. Elaborate on how it teaches bad actions, such as bullying or cheating, and good virtues, such as respecting others’ culture, traditions, and rights. 

6. Character Analysis

Pick a character you adore, whether from a novel or a book. Then, write an analysis of their traits and how these fit into their assigned role in the story. Of course, as in every character analysis, narrate their character transformation. So you have to identify key turning points and realizations that prompted the changes in their character, role, values, and beliefs. 

7. Character Vs. Personality 

Both your character and personality make you a unique individual. But they have different definitions and uses that make them independent of each other. In your essay, identify these differences and answer which has the most significant impact on your life and which one you should focus on. 

8. Why Psychologists Study Character

Psychologists study characters to know how and why they change over time. This helps them enhance their understanding of human motivation and behavior. In your essay, answer to a greater extent how studying character drive more people to thrive in school, work, or home. Then, compile recent studies on what has been discovered about developing character and its influences on our daily lives.

9. Choosing People For Your Character Reference  

A good character reference can help you secure a job you’re aiming for. So first, identify the top qualities employers look for among job seekers. Then, help the reader choose the best people for their character reference. For students, for example, you may recommend they choose their former professors who can vouch for their excellent work at school. 

To make sure your readers are hooked from beginning to end, check out our essay writing tips! If you’re thinking about changing your essay topic, browse through our general resource of essay writing topics.