Quick Letter of Rec Question

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
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Quick Letter of Rec Question

Postby cruxisfalcon » Fri Sep 06, 2013 3:11 pm

Hello all,

I had a quick question regarding letters of recommendation. I have one strong letter from a senior member of my major's (finance) faculty. For my second letter, would it be better to get one from a professor that knows me fairly well, but is from the same department (finance) or from a professor that knows me almost as well from a different department? Does it make a difference? I'm worried about appearing too one-dimensional.

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Re: Quick Letter of Rec Question

Postby xylocarp » Fri Sep 06, 2013 4:33 pm

From what I've heard from adcoms, having multiple recommenders from the same department is not an issue. What I would think about is - would these two professors say basically the same thing? Would the other professor have different information about you to offer? If both finance professors would speak highly of your X skill, while the other department prof would be able to talk about Y skill that the finance profs couldn't, you should consider that. However, if the other department professor wouldn't offer anything unique and it's ONLY a matter of who would write a LOR of higher quality, I would go with the other finance professor.

Regardless, you almost certainly won't be hurt/particularly helped either way, since LORs aren't too important for most schools. But I understand wanting to craft the best possible application regardless.

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Toby Ziegler
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Re: Quick Letter of Rec Question

Postby Toby Ziegler » Fri Sep 06, 2013 6:36 pm

xylocarp is right. You should diversify your LOR's inasmuch as you can get strong recommendations. I think 2 strong letters trumps one strong letter and one mediocre letter from a different department.

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