Is it acceptable to attach additional reference letters to an application under the supporting documents category of an application? Say I have 3 references from my masters institution, and another 2 from my undergraduate institution. I would think that if they are all positive, that the more is better. Would this be acceptable or is it a no-no? I am particularly thinking about top-10 universities.

  • top 10 universities where? – user7130 Aug 28 '13 at 9:35
  • US universities. – Gavin Aug 28 '13 at 9:45
  • @GHP: Other schools explicitly tell you not to submit anything beyond what's required. So don't shoot yourself in the foot by not following directions! – aeismail Aug 28 '13 at 20:34


US institutions expect that you have never seen your recommendation letters; your references are supposed to upload/submit them directly to your target departments. But presumably you are uploading/submitting your own supporting documents.

If the application web site somehow restricts you to naming only three references, then you only get three letters; choose wisely. If it's a paper application, just ask all your references to mail in their letters.

(I assume you are applying to a graduate program.)

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    Moreover, many schools now no longer allow additional recommendation letters. If they ask for three, they want three, no more, no less. Four is not allowed, and five is right out. – aeismail Aug 28 '13 at 12:04

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