Thank you for considering me as a person whose letter of recommendation you would like to have to advance your career in either academia or industry. In order for me to write you a strong letter of recommendation, I have formulate a series of guidelines and document reuqirements that aide in the letter writing process. Please note, as I am still a graduate student who acts as an instructor, the weight of my letter of recommendation may be viewed significantly less than that of an established tenure-track professor.
Prior to agreeing to write a letter of recommendation, I need to be able to say that I know you well. These guidelines characterize how well I know you. When trying to see how well I know you, keep in mind that the more positive your answers are the stronger and more specific your letter of recommendation will be.
- Frequency of engagement emphasizes the number of encounters I can draw on
when writing the letter of recommendation. Strong letters of recommendation
come through multiple engagements, e.g:
- Did you visit my OHs frequently?
- Ask well-phrased questions during class?
- How often did we talk about your group’s final project?
- Was it in a positive light?
- Duration of engagement describes how long we’ve known each other. For instance,
have I only known you one semester or did you take more than one course
- Please note that I will only write a letter of recommendation based on past accomplishments.
- That is to say, if you are taking a course in the same semester that you need your letter of recommendation, I will not be able to write it.
- Type of engagement describes how we were connected. Was I either your: instructor, research mentor, or activity leader?
If we have had no memorable encounters and you still need a letter of recommendation, the best that I will be able to provide is a statement that describes your academic performance in the course. In which case, I would strongly suggest that you consider speaking with another person for a letter of recommendation.
When sending a request for a letter of recommendation, please make sure that the following documents are attached:
- Headshot Photo
- Helpful to jog my memory about the number of times we interacted during office hours or the course.
- CV or Resume
- List of activities, accomplishments, and skills that you have.
- Unofficial transcripts
- Provides an overview of the kinds of coursework and the quality of knowledge obtained.
- Please make sure to include all transcripts for each University that you attended.
- Any application material prepared such as a personal or research statement.
- These materials allow me to reference moments that you would like to standout to the admissions committee.
- An overview of the Universities that you have applied to and their
corresponding due dates for letters of recommendation.
- Please supply a list that contains the following information for each letter: University, Program, Degree Level, and Due Date
- Warning: Minimum turnaround time for letters of recommendation is 2 weeks.