This dataset is a mix of two types of data collection, of data gathered between June 2010 and February 2019.
- Between 2010 and 2015 we asked the Applicant the question, and wrote down her answer word for word. Our staff at the time were all English-second-language (ESL), and many of our models are also ESL, so there are some phrasing issues and spelling mistakes – but we have worked to capture the reasons honestly.
- From 2016 onwards, we ask Applicants to type their answer in their own words.
In March 2019, we reviewed 100 random answers to get a sense of the range, then developed a set of classifications. We assigned a classification to each answer.
Like most people for most things, many Applicants have several reasons for applying. When assigning classifications, we’ve tried to identify the main reason, or the most “telling” reason. However, this is open to interpretation to some degree. For example, check out the quotes from Applicants who were classified under “Money”.