Archive for September, 2010

Recommendation Letter for Graduate School

Friday, September 17th, 2010

Raihan Masud, PhD Student,

Dept. of Computer Science, University of Oregon, USA
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Recommendation letters are very important for admission. For recommendation letter, most important thing what the referee is telling about your research credential and potential for grad schools. It is more valuable if the referee says -

“I have seen him for four years and most of the classes with me, he got B but his aptitude for research is extra ordinary. His thesis under my supervision was published in 15th IEEE conference on … He has excellent problem solving skills which I strongly believe will make him a star graduate student. He will produce quality research for sure. I enthusiastically recommend him for the PhD program at University of X ”

than if the referee says

“He has taken five courses with me. In all those courses he got A. I personally know him and he is very studious student and his gpa is 3.99. I wish him good luck in grad school”

Also it is good idea, if the referee tells about his own research and also from where he got his PhD. Please refer #3 sample letter.

Warning: Having similar recommendation letter from 3 faculty will increase the chance of understanding that you wrote those letter and then the faculty signed it. This has a very bad impact on admission process. So, request the faculty to write on your behalf or at least if you provide drafts to them, try to focus on your different strengths on different letters. Also try to follow different writing styles.

Here are some links for recommendation letter writing. Please read as the following order. My favorite is #2.

#2. http://www.cs.brown.edu/~sk/Memos/Grad-School-Recos/

#3. http://www.gradschooltips.com/sample1.htm

Good Luck.