How to: ask for letters of recommendation

Here are some tips to help you get the best recommendation letters you can!

  1. Choose people you have a good relationship with
    • Tell them that you’d be honored if they could write a letter of recommendation for you
    • Explain why you are asking that person specifically – what about the relationship you share is important to you?
  2. Do it early
    • The more time you give your recommenders, the better — give them at least one month before the deadline (more if there are a lot of holidays)
    • Ask if they would like you to remind them close to the deadline. If so, set a reminder in a place where you will not miss it
  3. Be prepared
    • Give your recommenders everything they need to write a successful letter for you
      • If the letter is submitted online, input their email address to the system so they get a notification, or send them a link to exactly where they need to go, so they don’t waste time
      • If the letter has to be mailed, give them a pre-addressed envelope and stamp
  4. Mention anything specific you would like them to talk about in their letter, like your extracurriculars or volunteering experience
    • A good idea is to give them your personal statement and/or resume, to help them get an understanding of why you’re applying to that school
    • This is especially important if you choose someone that doesn’t know you as well as you’d like
  5. Thank them!
    • Acknowledge that you are grateful and appreciative that they are taking time out of their busy schedules to write a letter on your behalf
  6. Talk to us
    • If you need help asking for a letter, aren’t sure who to ask, or have any other questions, let us know

 

Leave a Reply