How do letters of rec work?

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
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justin8509
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How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Fri Jan 24, 2014 10:53 pm

My school has a service where you can get letters of rec and they will store them for you. This is so you can ask your profs for the letters now, instead of later and run the chance of them forgetting you.

I asked my professor if I could get a letter from him and he happily agreed. He said though that the letter is submitted to LSAC (I think) instead of him writing me one. I am taking the LSAT in June or October, so applying shortly thereafter. How do I get the ball rolling? I don't want to ask both my profs in 6 months from now, as I'd rather get it done with and secured.

Also, if they're submitting the letter without me seeing it, is there any way that I can see the letter? I know both these teachers fairly well and think they will write me a strong letter, but I also have 3 other letters so I'd like to pick and choose.....is that even possible?

Any ideas on this stuff? Thanks !

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brotherdarkness
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby brotherdarkness » Fri Jan 24, 2014 10:57 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Sun Jun 29, 2014 4:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Sat Jan 25, 2014 5:40 pm

brotherdarkness wrote:You make an account with LSAC and the LORs are stored in your LSAC account. IIRC, you are asked if you want to waive your privilege to see the LOR. I waived that right, and the general consensus seems to be that that's TCR.

You can request the LORs anytime after you make your LSAC account. You submit a request to the professor through LSAC and, at that point, it's out of your hands (unless the prof doesn't submit it, in which case you have to hound him/her).

Go with your gut and pick the professor(s) who you think will write the best LOR.


Thanks. Are you allowed to delete a letter? I hear a lot of schools like two letters, and I have three people who will write for me. I think that the two professors writing will be stronger letters than my boss at the law firm I worked at will be.

AspiringAcademic
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby AspiringAcademic » Sat Jan 25, 2014 5:54 pm

justin8509 wrote:
brotherdarkness wrote:You make an account with LSAC and the LORs are stored in your LSAC account. IIRC, you are asked if you want to waive your privilege to see the LOR. I waived that right, and the general consensus seems to be that that's TCR.

You can request the LORs anytime after you make your LSAC account. You submit a request to the professor through LSAC and, at that point, it's out of your hands (unless the prof doesn't submit it, in which case you have to hound him/her).

Go with your gut and pick the professor(s) who you think will write the best LOR.


Thanks. Are you allowed to delete a letter? I hear a lot of schools like two letters, and I have three people who will write for me. I think that the two professors writing will be stronger letters than my boss at the law firm I worked at will be.

You get to pick which letters are submitted to which schools (common when a professor customizes a letter for their own school or similar). There is no harm in having a letter uploaded to LSAC and not using it.

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malleus discentium
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby malleus discentium » Sun Jan 26, 2014 2:18 am

brotherdarkness wrote:You make an account with LSAC and the LORs are stored in your LSAC account. IIRC, you are asked if you want to waive your privilege to see the LOR. I waived that right, and the general consensus seems to be that that's TCR.

You can request the LORs anytime after you make your LSAC account. You submit a request to the professor through LSAC and, at that point, it's out of your hands (unless the prof doesn't submit it, in which case you have to hound him/her).

Go with your gut and pick the professor(s) who you think will write the best LOR.

Be sure you understand what the waiver actually is. You do not waive the ability to see the LOR. You waived your right under FERPA to demand that the law school where you matriculate show you the LORs. Agreeing to the waiver does not mean you never see the letter; you are perfectly permitted to see and comment on an LOR (assuming the writer is okay with it, of course).

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brotherdarkness
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby brotherdarkness » Sun Jan 26, 2014 2:57 am

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Sun Jun 29, 2014 4:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

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KingJamesLBJ
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby KingJamesLBJ » Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:23 am

brotherdarkness wrote:
malleus discentium wrote:
brotherdarkness wrote:You make an account with LSAC and the LORs are stored in your LSAC account. IIRC, you are asked if you want to waive your privilege to see the LOR. I waived that right, and the general consensus seems to be that that's TCR.

You can request the LORs anytime after you make your LSAC account. You submit a request to the professor through LSAC and, at that point, it's out of your hands (unless the prof doesn't submit it, in which case you have to hound him/her).

Go with your gut and pick the professor(s) who you think will write the best LOR.

Be sure you understand what the waiver actually is. You do not waive the ability to see the LOR. You waived your right under FERPA to demand that the law school where you matriculate show you the LORs. Agreeing to the waiver does not mean you never see the letter; you are perfectly permitted to see and comment on an LOR (assuming the writer is okay with it, of course).


I did not know this. I've never seen any of my LORs. Can I view them if they're stored on LSAC despite having waived whatever I waived?


You cant see them on LSAC, but the writer of the LOR can show you it before/after they submit it

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:29 am

So you can waive the right to see a letter? Sorry, kind of confused. I'm also pretty drunk right now, might play a part in my confusion lol. I'd prefer to have my Profs allow me to see what they've written so I can choose the best letter(s).

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KingJamesLBJ
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby KingJamesLBJ » Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:32 am

justin8509 wrote:So you can waive the right to see a letter? Sorry, kind of confused. I'm also pretty drunk right now, might play a part in my confusion lol. I'd prefer to have my Profs allow me to see what they've written so I can choose the best letter(s).


Waive your rights(When you add the professors name to LSAC it will make you choose this option). Ask your professors to see the letters they wrote for you (If they are cool with it). When you apply for schools you can choose which ones to send to the schools on the LSAC website. Come back when sober. :idea:

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 2:37 pm

KingJamesLBJ wrote:
justin8509 wrote:So you can waive the right to see a letter? Sorry, kind of confused. I'm also pretty drunk right now, might play a part in my confusion lol. I'd prefer to have my Profs allow me to see what they've written so I can choose the best letter(s).


Waive your rights(When you add the professors name to LSAC it will make you choose this option). Ask your professors to see the letters they wrote for you (If they are cool with it). When you apply for schools you can choose which ones to send to the schools on the LSAC website. Come back when sober. :idea:


Thanks! I get it now. Haha

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cron1834
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby cron1834 » Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:21 pm

Magnets - how do they work?

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midwest17
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby midwest17 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 1:55 am

Even if you don't waive your right to see them, I don't think you can view them on LSAC. You can only get them from the school you end up matriculating at, after you matriculate. So it doesn't help re: deciding what letters to send.

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guano
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby guano » Mon Jan 27, 2014 2:08 am

midwest17 wrote:Even if you don't waive your right to see them, I don't think you can view them on LSAC. You can only get them from the school you end up matriculating at, after you matriculate. So it doesn't help re: deciding what letters to send.

Keep in mind that admins tend to view LORs where the right isn't waived far more sceptically, for obvious reasons

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malleus discentium
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby malleus discentium » Mon Jan 27, 2014 8:11 pm

guano wrote:
midwest17 wrote:Even if you don't waive your right to see them, I don't think you can view them on LSAC. You can only get them from the school you end up matriculating at, after you matriculate. So it doesn't help re: deciding what letters to send.

Keep in mind that admins tend to view LORs where the right isn't waived far more sceptically, for obvious reasons

This is not necessarily the case. Cf. Karen's post on this page and Anna Ivey's book. You should probably waive, since the odds of you actually going to see LORs after you matriculate are pretty much nil, but it's not cut and dried to say that not doing it will hurt you. (How do you link to specific posts, btw? Idk how :()

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 9:58 pm

Is this a good letter? I had about 5 of them lined up, and I think one of them is flaking, for whatever reason. Had some coworkers who didn't like me.

This is one that I might use, not sure yet. It's from my accounting teacher at my old university. It seems average to me, but then again I'm not sure what exceptional LOR look like. She sent it to me to see if I liked it and asked if I wanted her to add anything.



---

"I would like to recommend (my first&last name) for your Law School. I am very familiar with the talents and skills necessary to succeed in law school, and as a professional. I can say that Justin possesses the skills necessary to succeed both as a student and as a professional.

Justin is entering law school after careful thought and consideration about his goals and career aspirations. He is committed and ready to begin law school. He is very informed and excited about his career and is eager to start advancing within this area.

Justin was a student in two of my courses; Financial Accounting and Managerial Accounting, both very difficult courses, and he excelled. Justin is a mature and motivated individual. His work experience has been very beneficial and allowed his skills to develop and grow.

Justin is very motivated and is ready and able to work in the demanding environment of law.

In summary, I strongly recommend Justin for your law school. Please contact me if you have any questions (949-xxx-xxxx) or (insert email address here).

Sincerely,
(Teacher Name), PhD
CPA, CMA, CIA, CFM, CGFM, CFE"

Yay or nay? Keep in mind, I'm not applying to Harvard. Haha

Thanks all.

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KingJamesLBJ
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby KingJamesLBJ » Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:47 pm

justin8509 wrote:Is this a good letter? I had about 5 of them lined up, and I think one of them is flaking, for whatever reason. Had some coworkers who didn't like me.

This is one that I might use, not sure yet. It's from my accounting teacher at my old university. It seems average to me, but then again I'm not sure what exceptional LOR look like. She sent it to me to see if I liked it and asked if I wanted her to add anything.



---

"I would like to recommend (my first&last name) for your Law School. I am very familiar with the talents and skills necessary to succeed in law school, and as a professional. I can say that Justin possesses the skills necessary to succeed both as a student and as a professional.

Justin is entering law school after careful thought and consideration about his goals and career aspirations. He is committed and ready to begin law school. He is very informed and excited about his career and is eager to start advancing within this area.

Justin was a student in two of my courses; Financial Accounting and Managerial Accounting, both very difficult courses, and he excelled. Justin is a mature and motivated individual. His work experience has been very beneficial and allowed his skills to develop and grow.

Justin is very motivated and is ready and able to work in the demanding environment of law.

In summary, I strongly recommend Justin for your law school. Please contact me if you have any questions (949-xxx-xxxx) or (insert email address here).

Sincerely,
(Teacher Name), PhD
CPA, CMA, CIA, CFM, CGFM, CFE"

Yay or nay? Keep in mind, I'm not applying to Harvard. Haha

Thanks all.


Sounds very generic and cut and paste IMO. But to each its own

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 10:54 pm

KingJamesLBJ wrote:
Sounds very generic and cut and paste IMO. But to each its own


That's what I thought. Haha

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midwest17
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby midwest17 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:05 pm

I mean, it won't hurt. But it's not great, both because it's very generic and because it's poorly written. (I counted two grammatical errors on my read-through, and plenty of poor style choices.)

Also, I'd recommend not leaving the text of the letter up here for very long.

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KingJamesLBJ
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby KingJamesLBJ » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:07 pm

And she put your motivated twice like right after each other. (ok we get that your motivated) cool.

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justin8509
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby justin8509 » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:10 pm

Ok. So not using this one. lol

My teachers I have currently lined up know me a lot better. Does anyone recommend meeting with the teacher before they write it up?

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malleus discentium
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Re: How do letters of rec work?

Postby malleus discentium » Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:54 pm

justin8509 wrote:Ok. So not using this one. lol

My teachers I have currently lined up know me a lot better. Does anyone recommend meeting with the teacher before they write it up?

You should meet in person with the writer at least once, yes. Preferably when you ask for the letter and when you give them copies of everything you did in their class, your transcript, resume and and PS if it's written.




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