Winning Letters of Recommendation

Winning Letters of Recommendation

“A well-written letter for an outstanding applicant can show impressive characteristics beyond self-advocacy.” – MIT It sets you apart from the rest of the pool of candidates! With specifications and anecdotes, a reference gains power. It provides a complete sketch of the student and the context of their accomplishments. It includes information admission committees cannot

“A well-written letter for an outstanding applicant can show impressive characteristics beyond self-advocacy.” – MIT

It sets you apart from the rest of the pool of candidates!

With specifications and anecdotes, a reference gains power. It provides a complete sketch of the student and the context of their accomplishments. It includes information admission committees cannot glean from the rest of the application.*

Universities in the US usually ask for one to three references from the applicants – two from high school teachers and one from the college counsellor or a teacher responsible for the same. Select US universities also allow external letters of recommendation from coaches, job supervisors, and individuals who may have overseen your work or projects. Ensuring that these referees shouldn’t have been paid for coaching or training rendered is essential.

QUESTIONS TO ADDRESS WHILE WRITING A LOR

  • What is the context of your relationship with the applicant? Please acknowledge if you do not know the applicant well and can only write a summary.*
  • Has the student been willing to take intellectual risks and go beyond the typical classroom experience?*
  • Does the student incline beyond the regular teaching spectrum and not shy away from engaging in adaptive learning experiences?
  • What is the candidate passionate about? What are the aspirations, goals, and interests?
  • Does the candidate have an extraordinary skill or talent that exhibits team building, leadership, communication and personal and intellectual skills?
  • How does the student interact with peers, teachers, and persons with authority? Talk about their interpersonal skills and characteristics.
  • What is that one incident or event that put the student under the spotlight?
  • Describe a time when the student went through some failure or discontent. How did they respond to the situation?

WHY DO LORs HOLD SUCH POWER?

A personalised LOR has a lasting impression on the admission committee; this highlights your advantages and contextualises your challenges.

  • LORs are a critical aspect of personal and academic growth. It showcases your goals, interests, values, and your potential direction in the future.
  • LORs back the idea that you will firmly add value and contribute to the college campus and society in the times to come.

* https://mitadmissions.org/apply/parents-educators/writingrecs/


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