What is a recommendation letter?
Are you applying for various universities or jobs, or any other organization? Then probably, you must have heard a lot about something called the Letter of Recommendation or LOR. Do you know what is it? As the name suggests, an LOR is a letter that recommends a student employee colleague, or co-worker. This letter helps in getting the admission or appointment to know and understand more about the applicant. LOR is a great medium to showcase the positives and most impactful information about the applicant through the perspective of their supervisor/mentor/superior/guide/faculty.
What is a Letter of Recommendation?
A recommendation letter is a positive clarification from the person/organization, showcasing the strengths of the applicant as an ideal candidate for future employment or admission at any institution. In this letter, the applicant will get the opportunity to outline the characteristics, capabilities, and qualities that make perfect for a particular opportunity. In today’s competitive environment, a good recommendation letter may improve the candidate’s chances of being considered as a part of that organization.
Who Needs a Letter of Recommendation and Why?
Letter of Recommendation just increases the chance of being hired by the organization. Here are a few highlights:
Students Applying for University for Graduation or Scholarships or Research
Almost all the universities and the scholarship programs of the universities require recommendation letters as part of their application process. These reference letters should have been written by previous professors who are familiar with your academic achievements and abilities. Students will require references as the organization always wants to get a better understanding of the person they are hiring or admitting. A recommendation letter helps to shed light on the capabilities of the applicant along with the abilities that are difficult to fully convey in a resume and personal essay.
Universities often ask for two or three recommendation letters from people who know the particular student very well so that they can describe your skills, accomplishments, and personality briefly. Universities value recommendations because they:
- Expose the things about you more than that reflects in your grades and scores
- They can also get some close reviews about your character
- They can identify, who is willing to speak on behalf of you
Letters of recommendation are the most impacting way to impress the admission board if it is presented in a good convincing manner showcasing the skills and abilities of the student.
Whom to Ask for a Letter of Recommendation?
- Go through the application format of the university bit by bit. Some universities often ask for letters of recommendation from an academic teacher from your previous institution. They also sometimes ask to get a LOR from a teacher in a specific subject or from a school counselor or both. So work accordingly as per the requirement in the application form.
- It is better to choose one of your teachers from your recent institutions who have known you for a while. Because most of the universities ask for a current perspective on you. So a LOR from a teacher from several years ago may not help you.
- A teacher who knows you outside the classroom can also make a great reference.
- It will be the best choice if you pick someone enthusiastic about writing the letter for you.
How to write a Perfect recommendation letter?
The letter of recommendation you are submitting to the organization that you are willing to join must be written in a professional, relevant, and personalized way. Here we are presenting some steps to follow leading towards an effective recommendation letter:
- Follow traditional formal letter-writing rules
- Start with a brief opening line praising the candidate
- Outline the letter’s intent
- Detail why the candidate is a good fit for the university they are applying for
- Provide specific examples and anecdotes
- Write a closing statement
- Proofread for grammar, spelling, and formatting errors
Give details about the student’s academic life:
First of all, a good Letter of Recommendation needs a list of academic achievements, extracurricular activities, and the GPA of the particular candidate. It is also most important to get all the information about the program, and the university they are applying for. The LOR aims to be an advocate for your students to help, support, and highlight their achievements. A LOR can reflect a personal essay describing his/her ability and intentions behind applying to the university.
Put a Perfect Introduction About Your Relationship With Students:
The opinion on the Letter of Recommendation by a teacher brings a positive value to the admissions board. Just begin your letter by identifying who you are and how you are qualified to speak on behalf of the particular student, which simply means mentioning your relationship with the student. Also, add the title of the job, you are in, such as the subject you teach or a specific course you taught the student.
Continue your introduction by discussing how long you have known the student, you are recommending. This part can be an extension of your job title, which may describe your role in the student’s academic career. You can also add your impression describing how you have seen the student develop into a well-rounded student.
Give a Spot Light on Your Purpose:
Do in-depth research about the university you are applying for like what they are offering and why you are interested in applying for their university. Mention the section or the segment that fascinates you the most. Put extra emphasis on the capability of the student to satisfy the university’s needs. Your letter must have a convincing tone that will help the admission board to get the students admitted to the program.
Conclude your letter
The Letter of Recommendation should end with a closing statement restating the qualifications and achievements in the support of the student. In the concluding part, add a few options for the admission board to get in touch with you further, such as a phone number where you can be available and your email address. This final step will show your belief in the capability and ability of the student and fully endorse them for the program. It will surely influence the decision of the authority in selecting the student.
Proofread and error-free letter
Proofreading your recommendation letter is a must as it will ensure that, your file is error-proof. The recommendation letter should be brief and related to why you think that the candidate is the perfect fit for the position. By proofreading by professionals remove any grammatical or spelling errors, especially if you’ve written the hiring manager’s name on it. You can take the help of professional content writers who can lay an eye on the letter and make the necessary edits to make the LOR error-free.
Strong Tips for writing an effective recommendation letter
The following points are the most important tips you should keep in mind while writing a strong recommendation letter:
- Design a recommendation letter that highlights the candidate’s achievements, qualifications, skills, and educational background.
- Do not forget to mention the recommendation letter on your letterhead with your initials on it.
- Give a curious impression that the recruiter will crave to know the candidate more by spending time with them to understand their objectives and goals.
- Keep the letter brief and relevant; expand on just one or two key traits and skills the employee has that make them a great fit for the role.
- Do deep research about the company or organization and convince yourself that you are well-fitted for the university.
Read also: How to write a Letter of Recommendation?