Forever Alone LOR problems

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
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Br3v
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Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Br3v » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:09 pm

Not in any crazy sense am I anti social or something, but the idea of having to go and ask a professor for a letter of recommendation has me a little anxious. I guess I feel as if my professors will not think they know me well enough.

What is the typical acceptable student professor relation where one may ask for a letter? I see ppl on TLS saying things like take a professor out for coffee and stuff like that, to me it seems that it would be incredibly rare for a student at my university (large state school) to have a relationship with a professor such as this.

I plan to ask two professors for letters before the end of this semester. Professor 1 I feel better about because I have taken him for 2 semesters now, our current class is small (25 students) and discussion based and I speak up in almost every class. I have also talked to this professor a few times outside of the classroom via email for non class related things but still in reference to the subject he teaches. I have also been to this professors office hours and had a small discussion in regards to the current events related to his field of study.

Professor number two I know much less. The past few weeks I have been pretty anxious about getting a 2nd potential professor so I have visited their office hours twice as of yet but only discussed class related material. I plan to visit office hours several more times.

My question is, does it seem that it would be acceptable to ask for recommendations from these professors based on the information above? I want to have my applications in next year as soon as I can so I will not have time to create a relationship with one of my professors next fall semester.

Also, how do I go about asking for letters? I would think in person is best.
Last edited by Br3v on Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Samara
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Samara » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:10 pm

Yeah, just go to their office hours and ask. Writing LORs is part of their job. Don't stress about it.

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Dany
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Dany » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:14 pm

I always started with an email, asking if they would be willing to write me a letter of recommendation and if there was a good time for me to come to their office to discuss it. They'll say yes, then you can bring all your materials to the office when you meet with them. Since you're anxious about it, having the go-ahead via email before meeting in person should make it a lot easier. Plus, they might let you know what they need so you can bring it with you when you meet.

Also, seriously don't stress. This is their job, and they want to help you. They want their students from their university to do cool things, and I'm sure they'll be happy to write one for you.

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Aeroneous
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Aeroneous » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:16 pm

I haven't had to ask for LORs for law school yet, but I have had to ask for LORs for many things in the past. I think the first thing you should keep in mind is that professors receive these types of requests quite frequently. College professors are in a unique position when it comes to LORs, one usually shared only by employers and religious leaders. While you might be somewhat nervous, I'm sure the process will be somewhat routine for them.

As far as how to approach it, I would certainly ask the question in person. I think office hours are likely a good time to approach the issue, as it's the professor's designated time to be available to their students. On the other hand, if the professor in question usually has several people meeting at the same time during office hours you should probably consider scheduling an appointment.

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Br3v
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Br3v » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:18 pm

Ok thanks for the insight guys. I hadn't looked at it from the "it's part of the job" angle. Danny I think I will take advantage of your advice about sending an email first. That will help with my nerves a lot, just didnt know if that was unprofessional or something.

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Jaeger
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Jaeger » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Br3v wrote:Ok thanks for the insight guys. I hadn't looked at it from the "it's part of the job" angle. Danny I think I will take advantage of your advice about sending an email first. That will help with my nerves a lot, just didnt know if that was unprofessional or something.



I also asked in email and specified that if they'd like me to come in and discuss it, I would be more than willing. One professor was no big deal, as I had him for several classes. The other prof was a callous sonofabitch that I had for one class but I really liked. I assumed he would not be willing to help students as that seemed "his way". Actually, he did it quickly and without complaint. I did have one prof (a former lawyer, nonetheless) tell me to write my own LOR and he'd sign it. Watch out for that. Not only is it unethical, it's lazy and disrespectful of the professor. Needless to say, I didn't email him back and if I ever see him, it will be quite awkward.

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Br3v
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Br3v » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:55 pm

How much do schools really put on letters? Everything I've gathered from TLS is that it's all gpa LSAT. I can imagine that a horrible letter could put a damper on resume, and an excellent letter may boost slightly, but feel as if a moderate letter won't do much at all in terms of what your LSAT and gpa already allow/limit.

Is a moderate, "Br3v was a good student they got an A in my class and asked questions" harmful?

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Dany
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Dany » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:58 pm

They're probably not important save for the extremes (super awesome or a negative letter).

Edit: except at Yale, apparently.

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Samara
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Samara » Tue Mar 20, 2012 1:58 pm

Br3v wrote:How much do schools really put on letters? Everything I've gathered from TLS is that it's all gpa LSAT. I can imagine that a horrible letter could put a damper on resume, and an excellent letter may boost slightly, but feel as if a moderate letter won't do much at all in terms of what your LSAT and gpa already allow/limit.

Is a moderate, "Br3v was a good student they got an A in my class and asked questions" harmful?

I feel confident that I got two, possibly three, great LORs. (None from UG, but UG was four years ago.) I also feel confident that I did not overperform my cycle at all. So, no, I don't think a moderate LOR will hurt you.

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Jaeger
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Jaeger » Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:40 pm

Dany wrote:They're probably not important save for the extremes (super awesome or a negative letter).

Edit: except at Yale, apparently.



You can't say "edit" when you didn't actually edit.

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Dany
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Dany » Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:01 pm

Jaeger wrote:
Dany wrote:They're probably not important save for the extremes (super awesome or a negative letter).

Edit: except at Yale, apparently.



You can't say "edit" when you didn't actually edit.

I did edit the post, but before anyone else posted.

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Br3v
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Br3v » Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:35 pm

Just went and talked to professor 2 (not about letter) but it went great!

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Jaeger
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby Jaeger » Tue Mar 20, 2012 4:05 pm

Br3v wrote:Just went and talked to professor 2 (not about letter) but it went great!



Image


jk

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20130312
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Re: Forever Alone LOR problems

Postby 20130312 » Tue Mar 20, 2012 4:07 pm

Br3v wrote:Just went and talked to professor 2 (not about letter) but it went great!


...Why not?




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