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How do you ask for a letter of recommendation?

Topic: Getting a Job | Asked by: Anonymous | Asked on 06/17/2010

Answers (42)

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Approach the person. Describe the nature and value of your relationship with them (teacher, mentor). Then ask if they share that opinion. If so, ask for them to write a letter of recommendation that puts those opinions in writing.

Answered by: Tbw R. | about 4 years ago
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Speak with your professor of choice. Explain to them you found an opportunity and you are interested in applying. Ask them if they think you are a good fit for the position. If they think you are, ask if they could write you a letter of recommendation. Tell them the date you need the letter of recommendation by. Thank them and return for the letter when they are done.

Answered by: Rancor209 T. | about 4 years ago
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Select teachers and coaches that know you well and have seen you grown. If you are really not getting a good grade in the class, or if you have had a lot of issues with the teacher, do not ask them. They would most likely tell you that they cannot write one for you. Otherwise, if you are doing well, the teacher will be thrilled that you thought of them.

Answered by: Mighty Spidey L. | about 4 years ago
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Walk into a professor's office, preferably one that you know and ask for one. Generally they will ask you questions about your qualifications. I have even had professors ask me to write it myself and have them sign it. Most professors will go out of their way to recommend a student that has helped them in the past.

Answered by: Zolty F. | about 4 years ago
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I have had to do this and it is not as hard as it seems. To ask from a recommendation letter means that you have done something that would cause that teacher to remember you. You must have been a great student in the teacher's class. If you have done all these things then asking for a letter of recommendation should be very easy. Just simply ask the teacher if they can write one and I am sure he/she would say yes.

Answered by: Babagday B. | about 4 years ago
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When asking for a letter of recommendation you can either ask in person, recommended, or even email them. When asking for a letter of recommentdation you should always let them know why. Also informing the individual of the requirements of the letter in either size or format is recommended. The letter of recommendation can be for a job, education or even internship. Always keep in mind to thank them for taking the time to write the letter for you.

Answered by: Kat J. | about 4 years ago
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The easiest thing to do is just ask! If you're asking someone for a letter of recommendation, it usually means that you already know this person, and that they think highly of your potential and skills. If it's a professor you have, just approach them before or after class. If you don't seem them during the week, just send them an e-mail. Professors usually feel honored that you asked them above everyone else for a letter, since it shows that you think they'd be a good reference. Think of it as complimenting their integrity and success if you ask them for a letter of recommendation. As long as you're respectful, thankful, and patient, you'll have no problem.

Answered by: Young Sketchist16 G. | about 4 years ago
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You need to go in planner manner. Take an appointment from the professor, describe your interests and ask for writing recommendations with a proper request. Keep all your documents well arranged. Give enough time to professor to write the recommendation.

Answered by: Sandra P. | about 4 years ago
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Just ask. In person during office hours are the best way. Explain what you're applying for, and ask whether the professor would have time to write you a letter. This gives them a graceful out if they can't - they can just say they're too busy. Be sure to be polite, and don't argue or badger them if they can't. Send them any information they ask for, like a resume or transcript, and be sure to write a thank you note!

Answered by: Laura46 I. | about 4 years ago
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You need to go in planner manner. Take an appointment from the professor, describe your interests and ask for writing recommendations with a proper request. Keep all your documents well arranged. Give enough time to professor to write the recommendation.

Answered by: Sandra P. | about 4 years ago
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Just ask. In person during office hours are the best way. Explain what you're applying for, and ask whether the professor would have time to write you a letter. This gives them a graceful out if they can't - they can just say they're too busy. Be sure to be polite, and don't argue or badger them if they can't. Send them any information they ask for, like a resume or transcript, and be sure to write a thank you note!

Answered by: Laura46 I. | about 4 years ago
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All you have to do is approach your teacher or professor and ask for a letter of rec. They will be happy that you approach them and will do their best to write you a letter. They will tell you all the required materials that they will need.

Answered by: Ginger Tea K. | about 4 years ago
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Most people that have been in the teaching field have done recommendations in the past - some even have a template that they use and fill your name in. In any case, I guess it depends on your relationship with the person. Asking can range from simply asking verbally (nicely!) to sending a formal email. Be sure to thank them afterwards.

Answered by: The Truth C. | over 4 years ago
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It may seem awkward, but you just ask the letter writer, preferably in person. You should choose someone who actually knows your strengths. This means don't pick a professor you had for a 300 student lecture, because they probably won't remember you at all and you'll get a generic letter. Start cultivating relationships early on so important professors will know your name and something about you when you need to ask them for a letter. Also remember, they get these requests all the time, so don't be afraid.

Answered by: Pitt Chica Y. | about 4 years ago
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You want to make sure that the teacher you ask for a recommendation is suitable. This would be a teacher that you have worked with and knows you well enough to write a sufficient amount about you. He/She should also know where you are applying as well as your career goals. Ask early in the semester because this is when they are most likely to have the time to write your letter. Ask them if they would feel comfortable writing you a recommendation letter. If they look hesitant, back off. Make an appointment to talk to them about everything you think is relevant to their recommendation because they may not remember everything. Give them at least 2 weeks to write the letter.

Answered by: Mii N. | about 4 years ago
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First, you ask if the person would right a good letter of recommendation for you. Make sure you tell them the purpose for the letter. For example, is it for a job, internship, further education, etc. Next, make sure that they know who to address. Decide whether you want the recommendation sealed in an envelope or handed back to you. In addition, make sure they have a time frame for completion.

Answered by: L Platter F. | about 4 years ago
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Honestly, this should be one of the simplest parts of going for a job. First, don't ask for a recommendation from a teacher that you don't get along with, regardless of the grade that you made. You will most likely want a recommendation from a professor in the field that you majored in. Since you will have probably had several teachers multiple times, ask the ones that you built the best relationship with. There is no magic way to ask for a recommendation, if you like them and they like you, just ask. Say something like, "Dr. so and so, I'm applying for a job and I was wondering if you could write me a letter of recommendation?" It doesn't have to be any more complicated than that.

Answered by: Ooblydoo L. | about 4 years ago
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Just ask. People are usually happy to help. The best person to ask is somebody you are friendly with. However, don't be afraid to ask others if you've shown to them that you can do good work. The worst they can do is say no. There are sample recommendation letters online if you want to know what to expect.

Answered by: Criterion Y. | about 4 years ago
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It is important I think to ask whether the person feels comfortable writing a recommendation for you. The translation is: "will you write something nice about me?" you definitely don't want a recommendation from someone who has nothing particularly good to say about you.

Answered by: Recommendme R. | about 4 years ago
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To ask for a letter of recommendation, be sure to choose people who are familiar enough with your abilities and accomplishments that they can write a strong letter for you. Once you've chosen whom you will ask, it's a good idea to approach them in person, and ask them if they would be comfortable writing the letter for you--keep in mind that some are not comfortable with letter-writing, though, and try not to take it personally if they seem uncomfortable with the idea. It's a good idea to provide the person with a current copy of your resume so they can tailor the letter appropriately. You could even provide them with some details about the position(s) for which you are applying, which might give them further ideas for which characteristics of yours to highlight.

Answered by: Owlie U. | about 4 years ago
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If you're on good terms with the teacher that you're asking, there's no special way to do it. You just ask him or her for the letter of recommendation. All the teachers I asked agreed to do it without any problem at all. Be sure to ask at a good time. Some of my classmates waited until finals week to ask for their letters, and they understandably had to wait a bit.

Answered by: Null Terminator N. | about 4 years ago
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Know what type of recommendation you will need. Ask someone who knows you personally and you trust will give you a good recommendation. Go over some points you would want the person to stress and bring out. If you are asking a Professor, be sure that you have done excellent work for him. Always ask someone who will be honest to recommend you.

Answered by: Mcw2004 Y. | about 4 years ago
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It is very simple you go to the person who you wish the recommendation from and ask. Professors generally realize that students will need this and are more than happy to give one to people they like. They tend to have form letters for the occassion.

Answered by: Bitchstewie U. | about 4 years ago
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This may seem silly but the best way to ask, is to ask. You should approach the professor you wish to ask when they are free and just say you wish to ask for a letter for recommendation to whatever you need it for. If it needs to be done within specific guidelines then make sure you bring a sheet with you to give to the professor so they can do that for you. Most professors are more then happy to do this, just make sure you are respectful and not interrupting them when you ask.

Answered by: College Student123 T. | about 4 years ago
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My high school guidance counselor told me to ask my potential recommenders, in person, "Would you feel comfortable writing me a letter of recommendation for (grad school/job)?" and I have used it ever since, even for graduate school applications. I really like that wording because it gives your potential recommender a less awkward way to get out of it if s/he doesn't feel comfortable writing your letter (I don't feel that I know you well enough, etc.). If your potential recommender has no problem writing you a letter, the response is usually "I'd love to!" Neither is a bad outcome. If you get the "yes" you want, tell your recommender that you will get him/her your resume and any instructions/envelopes/stamps/forms they will need, and then follow through.

Answered by: Anrimala36 C. | about 4 years ago
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Asking for a letter of recommendation is a rather easy to do. As most teachers are accustomed to writing letters for their students, a simple explanation of what the letter of recommendation is for, and any specific guidelines should be communicated to your teacher. Always ask for a letter of recommendation in person if possible, and be certain to thank the instructor for their willingness to help you!

Answered by: Adamkendallz V. | about 4 years ago
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All teachers want you to succeed. They can greatly help you by giving a recommendation. Find a spare moment and ask them to help you with your future.

Answered by: Future College Kid C. | about 4 years ago
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Ask your professor or teacher ahead of time for a letter of rec. They usually will need quite an amount of time to complete. They will let you know what materials to submit to them.

Answered by: Choco Mint Y. | about 4 years ago
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Asking for letters of recommendations can seem like an awkward process. Make sure you ask teachers and/or employers who really know you. Choose teachers that you liked and in whose classes you did well in. Asking teachers that were advisers in clubs or sports teams you were members of is also a good idea. Ask for letters WAY in advance of the deadline. These individuals are very busy and my need to be reminded. Always ask for recommendations in person, if you can't manage to initially ask in person ask in email, but make sure you eventually follow up in person. Make it easy for them to want to write you a good letter by providing personal information about yourself and a written resume or suggesting that you set up a time to talk with them. Make sure you provide all the necessary forms and are following the application procedure and getting letters of recommendation won't seem difficult anymore.

Answered by: Keepsmiling F. | about 4 years ago
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A letter of recommendation is usually given by a counselor or a teacher, faculty member, or professional contact that is close to the student. To ask for a recommendation from any of these people you should just find them when they have a free minute, and ask them directly if they would write you a letter of recommendation. Tell them where you are applying to for college, and also what your major is. They will probably want to know these so that they can cater their letter to that school or for you entering your selected major. If this person is someone who is close on a personal level to you, you may want to sit down and tell them what you feel your strengths are, and if you wrote about certain strengths in say, a college application essay, let them know that. If you are not close on a personal level, and instead simply trust the person to highlight your strengths well, then you can leave it at that.

Answered by: Oh My Gawd Its Mc Caw Q. | about 4 years ago
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Be very nice. Try to think if you were this teacher, could you write a good letter for yourself? That is, how well does this teacher know you? If they don't know you that well, then see if you can find someone else to ask. Don't be upset if they say "no" - they are just telling you upfront that they cannot write you a good letter, and it is better to know now than to send a bleh letter to admissions. When you're asking them, outline with as much detail as possible what you are going to need from them. Are you going to need 50 letters or 5? When are the letter due? Do they have to be on any specific qualities? Are they online or in print? I gave my letter writers a packet of information that included where I was applying, when the letters were due by, any online information that may be required, the pre-addressed stamped envelopes, my resume, and a little bit of information about what I was thinking I wanted to do and/or why I wanted to go to that school. All of these things will make the process easier for your letter writers (they are busy too!) and hopefully, in turn, they will be able to write better letters for you!

Answered by: Psychphd P. | about 4 years ago
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Make sure that you are asking someone who you know personally and with whom you have a good relationship. Don't go asking the mayor or someone who doesn't have a clue who you are. Consider asking your pastor, your employer (if they like you!), or someone along those lines. When you ask, be courteous and respectful of their time. Just ask them nicely and I am sure they will be more than willing!

Answered by: Boylen33 D. | about 4 years ago
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Go to your most influential teacher and just ask! If you did well enough in school to need a letter of recommendation, then you probably did well in their class. So, your teacher more than likely speaks and thinks fairly highly of you.

Answered by: Ameithyst91 2. | about 4 years ago
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Approach the person. Describe the nature and value of your relationship with them (teacher, mentor). Then ask if they share that opinion. If so, ask for them to write a letter of recommendation that puts those opinions in writing.

Answered by: Tbw R. | about 4 years ago
  • Helpful 0
  • Not My Experience 0
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All you have to do is approach your teacher or professor and ask for a letter of rec. They will be happy that you approach them and will do their best to write you a letter. They will tell you all the required materials that they will need.

Answered by: Ginger Tea K. | about 4 years ago
  • Helpful 0
  • Not My Experience 0
Gravatar

The easiest thing to do is just ask! If you're asking someone for a letter of recommendation, it usually means that you already know this person, and that they think highly of your potential and skills. If it's a professor you have, just approach them before or after class. If you don't seem them during the week, just send them an e-mail. Professors usually feel honored that you asked them above everyone else for a letter, since it shows that you think they'd be a good reference. Think of it as complimenting their integrity and success if you ask them for a letter of recommendation. As long as you're respectful, thankful, and patient, you'll have no problem.

Answered by: Young Sketchist16 G. | about 4 years ago
  • Helpful 0
  • Not My Experience 0
Gravatar

A letter of recommendation is usually given by a counselor or a teacher, faculty member, or professional contact that is close to the student. To ask for a recommendation from any of these people you should just find them when they have a free minute, and ask them directly if they would write you a letter of recommendation. Tell them where you are applying to for college, and also what your major is. They will probably want to know these so that they can cater their letter to that school or for you entering your selected major. If this person is someone who is close on a personal level to you, you may want to sit down and tell them what you feel your strengths are, and if you wrote about certain strengths in say, a college application essay, let them know that. If you are not close on a personal level, and instead simply trust the person to highlight your strengths well, then you can leave it at that.

Answered by: Oh My Gawd Its Mc Caw Q. | about 4 years ago
  • Helpful 0
  • Not My Experience 0
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Be very nice. Try to think if you were this teacher, could you write a good letter for yourself? That is, how well does this teacher know you? If they don't know you that well, then see if you can find someone else to ask. Don't be upset if they say "no" - they are just telling you upfront that they cannot write you a good letter, and it is better to know now than to send a bleh letter to admissions. When you're asking them, outline with as much detail as possible what you are going to need from them. Are you going to need 50 letters or 5? When are the letter due? Do they have to be on any specific qualities? Are they online or in print? I gave my letter writers a packet of information that included where I was applying, when the letters were due by, any online information that may be required, the pre-addressed stamped envelopes, my resume, and a little bit of information about what I was thinking I wanted to do and/or why I wanted to go to that school. All of these things will make the process easier for your letter writers (they are busy too!) and hopefully, in turn, they will be able to write better letters for you!

Answered by: Psychphd P. | about 4 years ago
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  • Not My Experience 0
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Make sure that you are asking someone who you know personally and with whom you have a good relationship. Don't go asking the mayor or someone who doesn't have a clue who you are. Consider asking your pastor, your employer (if they like you!), or someone along those lines. When you ask, be courteous and respectful of their time. Just ask them nicely and I am sure they will be more than willing!

Answered by: Boylen33 D. | about 4 years ago
  • Helpful 0
  • Not My Experience 0
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Go to your most influential teacher and just ask! If you did well enough in school to need a letter of recommendation, then you probably did well in their class. So, your teacher more than likely speaks and thinks fairly highly of you.

Answered by: Ameithyst91 2. | about 4 years ago
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Be sure to ask your professor or teachers for a letter of recommendation for anything way early before the deadline. Give them at least three months to complete. Give them prepaid and addressed envelopes, the required forms, your transcript and sometimes your admissions essay or write a little bit about yourself, your goals and why you chose those colleges. Ask politely and do not be upset if they say no. They would only say that if they are not comfortable or fully sure that they would write an outstanding letter. Definitely have back up teachers to ask as well.

Answered by: Nycpigeons Q. | over 4 years ago
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First of all, ask in person (I sure hope you weren't thinking of e-mailing the teacher). Second of all, ask early (around the end of junior year or beginning of senior year). It's not too hard, you just go up to the teacher and ask, "Excuse me, Mr(s).____, I'm applying to a college that requires me to send teacher recommendations, and I was wondering if you could write a recommendation for me." Make sure you thank the teacher with a card and maybe also a gift when you're done with applications.

Answered by: Orangeapples W. | over 4 years ago
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