Four Secrets to Commendable LOR’s
Writing college applications is a big job especially when you are eyeing your dream colleges, the so called Ivy League. Letter of Recommendation (LOR) is the most potential source of powerful testimonials to a student’s stories and could greatly influence the decision of the admission committee.
Letters of recommendation are important to admissions officers because they provide contextual interpretation of your academic performance. Your recommender share critical insight into your work habits and learning style as well as your ability to respond to challenges and setbacks. LORs can help you explain irregularities in your academic program and lags in performance and could shed light into key factors that define your learning environment.
So who should you choose to write your letters? The people best positioned to support your application are those who know you well from your recent work in the classroom. They are familiar with your intellectual abilities and academic skills. They have watched you respond to a range of challenges in the classroom and understand your capacity and desire to learn.
They are your teachers, counselors, and advisers—they are your champions. Let them help you.
These are the 4 golden secrets which will not only help you in securing your LORs easily but also make the overall presentation of your application commendable.
1. Choose your close Teachers instead of distant HODs:
Generally speaking, your teacher who might have taught you for many years knows you better than your esteemed HOD. Admission committee is more interested in LORs written by the teachers who know you inside out, and not in the recommendation from a highly learned dean or professor who happened to meet you in a party.
Your teachers are the one, who have pushed you to achieve more and these are the folks who are more likely to invest their time in your long-term success. Contrary to popular belief, your most insightful supporter may not be the teacher regarded as the most popular. Generally speaking, at least one of your recommenders should be someone who is familiar with your critical thinking and communication skills.
Your recommender should be the one who is enthusiastic about you not a person who knows you distantly and who is lukewarm towards your application.
2. Give ample time:
Your recommenders need time to think about and prepare the letter. So, don’t bug your professor to write a recommendation in 2 days. This could seriously affect your application. Give them ample time and access to information critical for your recommendation.
3. Enrol your Recommender:
Share your dreams and ambitions. Tell them about the salient points of your university. Tell them about your program, how you have been working very hard to get into this program. Tell them everything you have been through and how you’ve finally made it. This will motivate your recommender to write an insightful recommendation.
Student should also share his/her shortcoming with his professor. A LOR could very well explain your shortcomings and your professors could be your best bet. So, make sure your recommenders are sufficiently informed so they can help you tell your “story.” Give them the necessary information and insight to write well-balanced letters.
4. Remind your activities and achievements:
Professors are generally very busy and have to teach a number of students. So, when you ask them to write a LOR for you, they probably don’t remember what significant works you have done, what pivotal role you have played in some specific activity or anything worth mentioning you well from your work in their respective classrooms, they may not have the benefit of the big picture that defines you. So, subtly remind your professor about your achievements, your role in the class or in cultural/ technical fest. Everything counts.
We hope these steps will help you realize a recommendation that is both commendable and genuine.
This gives an insight into your shortcomings as well as pats you back on your achievements. These types of recommendations can portray you as the most suitable candidate and could earn you, your dream admission.