LOR question : instructing recommender ?

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JJDancer
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:41 pm

LOR question : instructing recommender ?

Postby JJDancer » Sun Aug 08, 2010 7:47 pm

I asked a Professor for an LOR but I no longer live in the same state as my UG and haven't had contact with the Prof in 8 months.
I asked him to write me an LOR and he agreed the same day. In my initial email I had also asked him to let me know of any materials that would help him write it.

a) He asked for my resume which is fine. But I have a paper I wrote in his class (the writing in the paper isn't amazing but the content/research is good and I got an A on it with the comment "excellent paper") Would it be appropriate for me to slip it into the package I will be mailing him with my LOR form and resume? (Should I just put a post-it on the paper saying something like "I realized I still had the paper I had written for your class so I'm including it if it helps refresh your memory .."??

b) He is a political science prof that I'm sure has written LORs for law school before so I don't know if it would be obnoxious of me to say anything like "I would appreciate it if you could highlight my academic abilities such as analytical skills or research skills" but I don't just want him to write a generic letter about how I'm a dedicated student and did well in his class..?

Basically - what should I write on the post it when I include the paper. I worked really hard for it not because it was a terribly hard paper to write but because I did it while I had swine flu and was semi narcoleptic...
and would it be obnoxious if I sent him an email including a little instruction on what he could highlight. Any good way to do this?

He is a pretty "by the book" kind of guy but also laid back and understanding - not sure if this matters at all in my approach.

c) Also how do resumes help Professors write LORs when they only know you from class...I don't think there is anything he will be able to connect off my resume?

sibley
Posts: 2983
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 2:38 pm

Re: LOR question : instructing recommender ?

Postby sibley » Sun Aug 08, 2010 7:57 pm

a) If you think it will help him remember you in a positive light then you should include it, with a note explaining which class of his you wrote it for.

b) Go ahead and tell him the areas you'd prefer he focus on, as long as either your work in his class or your resume will back him up.

Don't write it on a post-it and don't email him. If you separate the materials from the note it's more complicated for him. Instead write a semi-formal short letter thanking him again, describing what you've included, and explaining what you would hope he could include.

c) In your note also link any direct connections you see on your resume that will be helpful "Included, as requested, is my resume. I have a strong background in.... I've also included a copy of a paper I wrote for your course, PSC###...." etc

JJDancer
Posts: 1564
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:41 pm

Re: LOR question : instructing recommender ?

Postby JJDancer » Wed Aug 11, 2010 5:47 pm

how do resumes help Professors write LORs when they only know you from class...I don't think there is anything he will be able to connect off my resume?




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