I am in the process of preparing an application for a grad school/PhD program in Economics. The program I want to apply for requires two letters of recommendation so I was wondering which professors to approach to maximize my chances. There are basically two major research fields I am interested in and I could get a letters from a professor in each of the fields. However, there is also professor at a higher ranked university I attended a course at who could give me another letter of recommendation in one of the fields.

My question is whether it is better to have two letters from professors in a single research field rather than from each of the fields?

  • 1
    Which professors are able to write the best letter for you? Sure, you may have a prof from a great school write you a letter, but what can they really say about you from one semester of interaction? If the two profs know you better and can provide a more accurate depiction of your potential, then go for that because those profs can attest to your good performance in class (like the other prof) but also build on that more fully as well. Jul 20, 2020 at 12:28
  • Thank you, that is certainly a very good point. I do happen to work as a student assistant for one of the professors but haven't taken any of his courses yet—I plan to take one of his courses though. I am not sure whether it is an advantage that I have worked for him but not taken any of his courses, do you happen to have any insights on whether this is regarded acceptable?
    – user126545
    Jul 20, 2020 at 12:44
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    @GrayLiterature, that seems like an answer, actually.
    – Buffy
    Jul 20, 2020 at 13:54
  • I’ll post it later, I thought I was responding it as an answer - mobile isn’t isn’t too friendly sometimes. Jul 20, 2020 at 14:20
  • Do either of these threads answer your question: academia.stackexchange.com/a/13698/19607 or academia.stackexchange.com/q/85215/19607
    – Kimball
    Jul 20, 2020 at 16:20


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