What Is a College Recommendation Letter?
A college recommendation letter or letter of reference is a document written to endorse a college applicant. It supports other materials to strengthen the chances of admission. Like other letters, a college recommendation letter is concise, formally written, and highlights the candidate’s desirable qualities. Plus, it explains the purpose of the application as well as the future contribution of the applicant to the institution. Most of the time, the applicant’s previous teachers or employers, are the ones who can write the recommendation, for obvious reasons.
How Do You Write an Effective College Recommendation Letter?
Writing a college recommendation letter is not as challenging as you think. But, starting the task can be a little tricky. That is why our website offers various college recommendation letter templates, which are downloadable and ready-made—all these guarantee high-quality outputs. To help you craft the possible best college recommendation letter, here are tips and steps in writing one. Continue reading below.
1. Request Someone to Write the Letter
The ideal authors of a college recommendation are the applicant’s previous teacher, coach, or counselor because they can state facts about the student, including a profound description of their personality, work ethics, and skills. Hence, the student should select someone who they have a relationship with outside of the school premises. These people can be part of a volunteer program, sports team, or school club. Doing this has advantages, one of which is that having activities apart from a full curriculum is a take away from schoolwork.
2. Learn the Fundamentals of a Letter
Before someone could write a recommendation letter, the writer should be familiar with its essential components. Each letter varies depending on its purpose. And, unlike most letters, a recommendation letter focuses on highlighting the requester’s qualifications. That said, it must tell a story about the relationship between the author and the applicant; likewise, emphasize the student’s positive attributes. Although it is easier to write a list of positives, try to show why the candidate is a good contender for higher education.
3. Download a Letter Template
Since some authors prefer to write from scratch, using a template is optional. Having a stencil is highly recommended to those who have been writing recommendation letters for a significant amount of time. If you are expecting to be flooded with endorsement requests, a template can help make the task less hassle. Meanwhile, it is also important to remember that a personalized recommendation letter is one of the best endorsements. Either way, as long as the message entails honesty, it should be enough to bolster the student’s application.
4. Provide a Strong Conclusion
The conclusion is as essential as other parts of the letter. It is a paragraph consist of two to four sentences. Ideally, an ending statement summarizes the endorsement by restating the author’s support to the student. It should also include contact details in case the receiver has further questions about the recommendation letter. Additionally, provide a sign-off: the author’s name and signature together with the date when the letter was signed. This signifies the authenticity of the document. And, it shows that everything in the letter is based on facts.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes a strong letter of recommendation?
There are several factors to keep an eye on in writing a recommendation letter. To ensure the efficiency of your letter, make sure to request from an individual who you have a relationship with at least three years leading up to the application process. With that, the author can tell who the requester is and elaborate on the applicant’s qualifications. It is also important to provide well-defined examples and anecdotes to support the claims.
Does a letter of recommendation need to be signed?
A signature in an electronic letter of recommendation is not mandatory. However, if an authorized person wrote the letter, they should include their signature in the document. Signing the letter means the document is valid and authentic. It also entails factual contents and information.
Is it okay to copy college recommendation letters?
Ideally, recommendation letters should be personalized by the author. In some cases, especially there is not much creativity when it comes to this type of letter, accurately describing the requester’s character is enough to make a good college recommendation letter.
Colleges and universities receive several applications from students every day. They set up requirements and use tools to sift through the best people for the institution. On top of that, several documents are needed from the applicant to strengthen their chance of being accepted. One of the most critical is a recommendation letter. It is the best choice for incoming college students who want to gain higher education.