Having been deferred at three schools (so far), I'd like to up my chances by sending in supplemental material. I've already sent one excellent PS and four LORs, so I'd rather not send more of the same. One school said they would accept writing samples.
I'm thinking of sending in a paper I wrote a few years ago. I've re-edited it and it's now 6 pages (including bibliography). It's not my absolute best work, but it's probably the best sample of my work under 10 pages and I feel like the shorter it is, the more likely they are to actually read it. The paper is an ethical analysis of a historical issue, but not too controversial.
Do you think that there is any way that sending in a quality writing sample could hurt me? I'd like to send it even to the schools that didn't specifically request more material, in order to show that I'm still interested. I don't mind sending it in if it doesn't make a difference or could help a little, but I don't want to shoot myself in the foot. Is there any way that sending in an unrequested 6 page writing sample could annoy an admissions committee and hurt my chances?
Please send comments, thoughts?