Want a Recommendation?

So you want a letter of recommendation…

If you are a current or former student of mine and would like for me to write you a letter of recommendation, please see the below guidelines and contact me no later than one month prior to the due date for the letter.

Prior to contacting me to talk about a letter of recommendation, I strongly urge you to check out the following webpage on securing letters of recommendation: https://career.berkeley.edu/Grad/GradLetter.stm

I am happy to write the strongest letter I can, within the limits of ethics and honesty. Here is what I need:

1. At least one month’s notice, particularly if I have never written you a letter before. Please remember that all of your potential referees are very busy people who need enough lead time to write a strong letter.

2. An updated resume, so that I know what you have done.

3. A copy of your personal statement, so that my letter squares with what you are saying about yourself. If you do not have a personal statement, please send me talking points, a list of items that you would like me to emphasize (e.g., writing ability, leadership experience).

4. The best paper(s) that you have written for me. I can make a better case for your research and writing skills if I can cite specific examples.

5. An unofficial copy of your college transcript.

6. All the relevant forms.

a. If I need to mail the forms, please provide me with instructions regarding to whom and when the forms should be mailed.

b. If I need to submit the forms online, please provide me with the webpage and any relevant log-in information.

c. Check to see whether the form includes a waiver of your right to inspect the recommendation. My own policy is to write the same letter regardless of whether the student waives access, but you should know that some readers may give the recommendation less weight if the student insists on access. Whatever you decide, check the appropriate box and sign. An unsigned form may cause a delay that interferes with your application.

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