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How to Ask for a Letter of Recommendation

How to Ask for a Letter of Recommendation photo

Publication Date: | Categories: Blog

Frankly speaking, if you are going to ask your professor for a letter of recommendation, it is better to do it by a letter written by hand. However, if you are absolutely sure that your teacher is comfortable with the digital way of messaging, use this option.

But this is not all! The next step is composing an email, and here you need to know several useful tips from our experienced writers at that will help you a lot.

1. Address your professor in his or her preferred way

When starting an email, begin with a professional opening (like “Dear” for example) and add your professor’s name.

For example, “Dear Dr. Richardson”.

A little hint for you: if you are not sure what title is better to use, go to the professor’s web site and check it out there.

2. Introduce yourself

Most likely, professors can not remember all the students they have ever taught. So the next step will be to refresh their memory and remind of who you are. Write your name and the name of the class you were taking with them.

3. State your purpose

Now it is time to say why, in fact, you are writing to them. Whether you need a letter of recommendation or a reference, just write about it! And of course, remember to provide some details about the job or a mastery program you are applying for and which you need this recommendation for.

4. Explain your choice

The next step is to explain why you chose them. Here you can say about the importance of their lessons to you, mention the impact their course or courses had on you and you studying, or explain why you think their letter will be more significant.

5. Provide additional information

Your professors must know what person he or she will be writing about. So attach any helpful information that tells about your achievements, and remember to add your resume and CV. Diplomas, awards, certificates from the classes you have taken – everything will do. And make sure you let them know what information you have included.

6. Add instructions for the letter of recommendation

Tell your professor the due date for your recommendation letter and provide him or her with the instructions on how to submit the letter, as well as the address (physical or digital) where to send it.

7. Express your gratitude

Finally, write about how grateful you are to them for helping you and for their support. They need to know that you value their time and help in writing a recommendation letter for you.

8. Sign the letter

Finish your email with a professional close like “Sincerely” or “Best Regards”. Then skip a line and write your full name.

9. Choose a clear subject

Before sending an email, make sure you have written a clear subject for it that explains the request exactly. It will help your professor to see that this email is timely.

What other tips can you use?

Make sure you ask your professor for a recommendation letter in advance, minimum two months prior to the due date, in order to let him/her have enough time for writing and sending it. Remember that professors have quite a tight schedule!

Make sure you have chosen someone who is familiar with your work, likes you, and can give you good recommendations. And also, sometimes it is better to write the email in the body of a letter. Like that, it will be easier for your professor to read it at once and it will not get lost among the other documents on the computer.