Letters of recommendation often play an important part in applications for jobs and graduate school. Here are some guidelines for requesting them.
- Generally speaking, applicants should request letters from people who have worked closely with them and know them well - for instance a supervisor of a recent summer project as opposed to an instructor of a class of 300 several years ago.
- In my case, letters should be requested at least 2 weeks in advance (this means the links for the application form should be provided two weeks in advance). Applicants requesting several letters should group them together.
- Applicants should supply their latest CV, and information on where they are applying, as well as any other ammunition.
- If a paper copy has to be sent, please provide an envelope with the proper address, as well as a cover letter ("Please find attached a letter of recommendation for so-and-so from so-and-so").