Tips for an Excellent Student Recommendation Letter
For studying abroad & that too for higher education abroad, recommendation letters play a crucial role in admission seeking. And before jumping straight to the tips to get an excellent Student Recommendation Letter (LOR). Let’s understand why exactly it is essential to have an excellent Recommendation Letter so we can take all measures to have one.
Why do Universities need a Letter of Recommendation (LOR)?
The admissions board inspects your Letter of recommendation (LOR) for the following-
- To verify your credentials & achievements as mentioned in the other part of your application
- To get a third-person view of your personality & character
- Any additional notable information apart from your SOP (Statement of Purpose/ Study Plan) & essays
- To assess if you are fit for the University, evaluate your qualities like academic sincerity, extracurricular activities, etc.
After getting a brief idea about why it is critical to have a fantastic recommendation letter, let’s understand –
Who should you approach for getting these recommendation letters?
Following are some criteria –
- The person acquainted with you professionally or academically
- The person who is willing to promote you
For instance, this person can be your professor, HOD, Dean, or anyone you have worked with professionally. A piece of genuine advice is to approach a person who is working/ teaching in the field of your applied course.
Once you have figured out the potential recommenders, the next step is to approach these recommenders.
How should you approach these recommenders for writing a Letter of Recommendation (LOR) for you?
- Reach out your recommenders & discuss with them about your future plans in their convenient time
- Give them the idea about LORs if they are unaware of it
- Ask them if they’d do what’s needed or not. And if they can’t write & have any time, is it okay if you write a LOR? So, that they can provide it to you online or on the college’s letterhead.
- If they are ready to write themselves, provide them with the essential information if they agree. Like your resume, Statement of Purpose (SOP) written for admissions, a list of achievements, and points you would like them to include.
- If they have to send it via their email id – provide your recommender with proper email-id of the colleges you are applying to
- Brief them about the entire admission process and deadlines
- Avoid approaching your recommenders at the last minute of admission
- During this process constantly be in touch with them – follow-up – this doesn’t mean you push them
- Appreciate them for their time & effort
- Once you get your LORs from your recommenders, keep them updated about your admissions.
How to structure an excellent Letter of Recommendation (LOR)?
After understanding the student’s profile by referring to his/ her resume, list of achievements & other transcripts. The next step is to structure a good LOR for the student.
Introduction – Your recommender presents your relationship with them (e.g., professor, employer, etc.) and their overall opinion of you for the time they have known you.
Body – Your recommender justifies why they believe you are the best candidate for that Course or Program, mentioning your educational background, activities, and relevant personality traits.
- Highlighting achievements in diverse fields & most importantly in the field of application is necessary
- Showing overall progress of the candidate gives a good impression
- Having relevant examples of actions by the candidate for specific soft skills or characteristics provides a solid backing
Conclusion – Your recommender adds a powerful closing statement which vouches for your application, followed by a standard closing phrase and their credentials (name, contact, signature).
In conclusion, the tips mentioned above are pretty elaborate to help you get a great Student Recommendation Letter.
Also, check out our other blog on Top 3 Reasons to Study Abroad to know how studying abroad helps you as a person.