Questions on recommendation or reference letters received from faculty members when applying for graduate schools or faculty positions.

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5
votes
1answer
89 views

Letter of recommendation from Post-Doc or Professor

I was guided by a Post-Doc for my undergraduate thesis, but the one responsible for all and offering the thesis was a Professor, who I only talked to when discussing the thesis, agreeing to it, and ...
39
votes
4answers
4k views

How do professors learn how to write letters of recommendation?

Writing letters of recommendation must be a fine art. Culture across fields and countries vary wildly in almost any respect, and this is likely to the case for LoR. How/when do professors learn how ...
23
votes
7answers
5k views

Would a professor write a bad letter of recommendation?

I asked a professor from my online graduate degree to write a letter of recommendation. It was when I first started looking at graduate school, so was not prepared with what you would usually want to ...
1
vote
2answers
122 views

Is it okay to ask for a letter of recommendation more than a year before applying to a master's program?

Not too complicated of a situation -- I'm graduating with my bachelor's degree (Mathematics) in a couple weeks, but to support my wife, I'm going to get a job for a while before looking at attending a ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

Asking for a recommendation letter from an open source repository mentor

I wish to apply for an MS in a particular branch (a sub-field) of Computer Science at various US universities. I have been working with a person on an open source repository for some time (about 5 ...
7
votes
2answers
336 views

How much value is given to a recommendation letter written by a foreign professor? (Grad school/math)

I'm about to finish my undergraduate degree in mathematics in France, and expect to be close to the top of my class in a top university here. Next academic year, I will be studying for a master's at ...
1
vote
0answers
49 views

Recommendation letter and Deferring Application in the US Universities [closed]

In this fall 2016 I was offered a full Funding admission (PhD, Chemistry) from a university A. I applied a few other universities too. Some of them haven't given any decision but hey have taken all ...
4
votes
1answer
120 views

How important is the prestige of recommendation letter writers?

If it makes a difference, I am an undergrad. I am wondering how important prestige in the following situation: I can choose between two advisors, A and B, to work with. I think that both would be ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Recommendation letter sent from non-institutional email

Would it hurt the student's evaluation, if I were to send their recommendation letter from my gmail account as opposed to the institutional? I use my gmail account for all my correspondence, it is ...
4
votes
5answers
71 views

Is there any online server to upload recommendation letters and share the link with the universities

Usually we need a few recommendation letters when we apply for a job or academic positions. Im wondering if there is any online server to make it easier on my referees so that they only write once ...
3
votes
1answer
174 views

When is the best time to ask for letters of reference?

When should one ask for letters recommendations of the people of one's choice? E.g. when applying for a PhD program, should you ask for two or three letters all at once or should one collect a letter ...
14
votes
2answers
603 views

When writing a letter of reference, is there any reason not to show it to the student?

I only agree to write a reference letter if I can write a positive one. Although it is only hypothetical at this point, I would hesitate to write a reference letter for an individual who chooses not ...
2
votes
1answer
76 views

How important are recommendation letters for doctoral program admission?

I am now looking for a new Ph.D. position and as usually I need to provide the contact of the people to recommend me. Most of the time I need to write the letter myself and send it to the person so ...
12
votes
2answers
351 views

My advisor said he has to mention my mental health condition in recommendation letters. How much can he say?

During my PhD I suffered from Generalized Anxiety Disorder, that was officially diagnosed. I had to stay away from the University for a year, however this issue didn't affect at all my productivity ...
3
votes
1answer
82 views

How to explain to letter writers that I want to apply to completely different PhD programs?

I am not entirely sure yet what I will want to do: It will either by subject A or subject B. Those to subject have very little to do with each other though. (Say one is history of art, the other one ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How good is phrase in letter of recommendation describing my smart but unorthodox solutions?

I have a LOR from my previous employer and I want to use it for the MSc application I'm preparing. However, there is a certain sentence in this LOR that even though I understand its meaning (based on ...
6
votes
2answers
174 views

Asking for a letter of recommendation from a professor who's witnessed my breakdown

I'm currently applying for an intensive language program, and I've taken courses with a professor whose letter of recommendation would likely carry a lot of weight– he speaks the language fluently, ...
0
votes
4answers
461 views

Can I lie about my GRE score to get a better letter of recommendation?

I have a situation. I have got GRE score of 324. My academics are pretty strong as well (5.1/6.0). I am applying for MS to US universities. In the process of gaining letters of recommendations, I do ...
2
votes
1answer
115 views

Can post-doc researchers write a recommendation letter for someone applying for PhD program?

I am wondering how it is treated if a post-doc researcher write a recommendation letter for someone applying to get PhD admission? Whether selection committee evaluates it properly?
5
votes
3answers
164 views

How to get a “teaching letter” when I don't want my department to know I'm looking for a job?

I am currently a tenure track faculty in a college and I plan to look for a position somewhere else. A problem is that, I can not get a teaching letter from my department (in fact I would like to keep ...
8
votes
2answers
206 views

Should I ask for a recommendation letter from a professor who has a bad non-academic reputation?

I am an undergraduate interested in applying for graduate school in a physical sciences program. I have a good relationship with a few of my professors (it's a very small department). I would like to ...
1
vote
2answers
125 views

Impact on PhD application omitting a recommendation letter from research advisor in that field?

If an applicant has research experience in a field that they are applying to and includes it in their application, would there be negative impact on the application if they chose not to include a ...
2
votes
1answer
98 views

Advice with letters of recommendation etiquette

I'm applying to graduate school and require two letters of recommendation. However, I'm not sure what the best process is for asking for these letters. I plan on asking two or more of my superiors ...
1
vote
1answer
45 views

The third letter of recommendation. Which one could strengthen my PhD application?

I will apply for the PhD GRA in the USA. It is focused on politics of my native country. Since graduating the university, I've been working in journalism and dealing with the same isssues. Does it ...
5
votes
3answers
394 views

Is it ethical to require student work in exchange for letter of recommendation

Is it ethical for a psychology professor to expect volunteer work in the lab in exchange for a letter of recommendation? The rationale is that they are unable to judge a student's suitability for ...
15
votes
2answers
279 views

What to do if one of my recommenders has commited a plagiarism violation that has been publicized online?

I plan to obtain a recommendation letter for PhD from a recommender with whom I have worked a lot during the course of my bachelor's. However when I accidentally typed her name in Google, a copyright ...
15
votes
1answer
304 views

What to do after receiving poor academic recommendation(s)

I was recently applying for a number of PhD programmes, and I asked a number of my previous professors for recommendation letters. However, after the results of these applications were released, it ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Can I change my recommendation letter provider?

I wrote a few weeks ago about a conundrum I had with a professor regarding my recommendation letter for graduate studies in UIUC. I'm very grateful for everyone's responses, but I still have not ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Is it really necessary to have letterhead for recommendation letter from employer to apply for US universities?

In my company letterheads are not allowed for this kind of purpose. So can you suggest me best format for recommendation letter(from my manager) that can be used to apply for universities in US..?
12
votes
2answers
154 views

Recommendation letters for REU from grad student

I am a mathematics grad student who is often the primary instructor for undergraduate courses, and I have been asked by one of my previous students to write a recommendation letter for REUs, which are ...
4
votes
1answer
85 views

How are reference letters for postdocs submitted?

I am right now beginning my first application for my first post-doctoral position. The announcement lists a series of documents which should be submitted, including (quite predictably) a reference ...
5
votes
2answers
305 views

What to do with letter of recommendation if you left program unhappily?

I was forced to leave a STEM program after a fight over whether I could apply the NSF sponsored summer abroad fellowship. I was given a letter of resignation and 2 month of notice. The situation was ...
2
votes
1answer
132 views

How common is it for recommendation letters to be sent directly from the writer to the recipient?

Something that I frequently read on academia.SE is that recommendation letters, in most circumstances, are sent directly from the person writing the letter to the person/committee reading the letter, ...
8
votes
4answers
210 views

Can I ask for a “general” letter of recommendation?

I'm a first-year undergraduate finishing up a course that I've done very well in with a professor whom I have a great relationship with. I'd like to ask him for a letter of recommendation, but it's ...
0
votes
1answer
66 views

How to write a recommendation letters for an undergrad student applying to transfer to another university?

As a new faculty member, I have just received my first request to write a recommendation letter for an undergrad student who is looking to transfer to a more prestigious university. I taught this ...
47
votes
3answers
9k views

Student asks for letter of recommendation: I can't remember the student

I have already had this issue a few times. I just received an e-mail from a former student of an undergraduate course, asking for a letter of recommendation to apply for graduate studies. This course ...
2
votes
4answers
140 views

How closely to the deadline should I expect professor to submit reference letter on my behalf?

I asked a professor to write a reference letter for me and he agreed to it; however, the deadline is coming up and he has yet to submit the letter. As I am not experienced with the process, I wanted ...
1
vote
1answer
146 views

How should I ask professor for letter of recommendation?

I'm a freshman undergrad student, and I'm applying for some programs that require letters of recommendation. I already have one professor who seems happy to write one for me, but I have another who I ...
6
votes
1answer
349 views

Leaving postdoc after less than one year with no reference letter

I've been in my first postdoc for a year and feel that I'm not progressing in my career. There has been communication issues with my PI, he's not very supportive of his senior postdocs, and it takes a ...
28
votes
4answers
5k views

Should a reference letter for a student always be positive?

I am finding the following moral problem, and possibly people with more experience could help me. One of my Master students (who recently finished his master studies) is applying for PhD positions. ...
2
votes
1answer
530 views

Name spelling problem in recommendation letter

I have applied to several US universities for admission to the PhD program this fall, so I requested my professors to write recommendations for me. One of the professor wrote my name incorrectly. My ...
6
votes
4answers
758 views

Do I have to sign a recommendation letter that will be submitted online?

I am a lecturer at a public university in Bangladesh. I am going to give recommendations for students from my class who are going to apply for graduate admission to some US universities. These letters ...
32
votes
9answers
9k views

Professor didn't write a letter because I didn't waive my right to view it. How to let him know that I have changed this?

I'm applying to UIUC and have asked 3 of my professors to write me recommendation letters. One professor, who I discussed my application with before extensively, wrote back to me after I was done with ...
1
vote
2answers
263 views

To senior researchers, how would you view a student you wanted to work with, but who could not?

I am a Ph.D. student and met this senior scientist in a local conference, let's call him Dr. XX. (He is working in a research institute like Bell Lab, not exactly in academia.) We took some interest ...
2
votes
2answers
265 views

Applying for PHD in Europe: getting a recommendation

I'm considering applying into an (individual) PHD program, after graduating from a top Russian university (computer science) with moderately high grades in 2013 and 3 years of professional experience. ...
21
votes
4answers
3k views

Should I “offer” something when asking for a letter of recommendation?

I'm an undergraduate and currently applying to summer research programs that ask for letters of recommendation. Last summer, I did research at a university with a professor who I'm planning on asking ...
2
votes
1answer
118 views

One of my former professors no longer works as an academic, Can I still ask her for a recommendation letter?

I am applying for a graduate school which has a special reference form to be filled. On the form, the referee should write his/her name and position. Does that mean all referees must be current ...
30
votes
1answer
5k views

Just received a great recommendation letter with one incident of a different student name

In reviewing graduate school applications, I have a letter of recommendation that consists of two paragraphs. The first one is very detailed and personalised. The second one I think is standard and ...
6
votes
3answers
305 views

Any way around letters of recommendation requirement?

I'd like to apply for an MBA (sick of working in IT and want to change) but seemingly every university I look at requires multiple letters of reference, one of which from a current supervisor. Is ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

US Master Admissions, LoR: Academic vs. Employer

As a matter of recommendation letters, how do US admissions to MS programs generally look at LoRs from employers as opposed to those from academics? And how are recommendation letters generally ...