Home Education News 5 Benefits of Letters of Recommendation for Applying to Colleges

5 Benefits of Letters of Recommendation for Applying to Colleges

by Maurice A. Miller

Applying to college is an important step in anyone’s life. And there’s a lot of paperwork that goes into it. There’s the essay, high school transcripts, various FAFSA documentation, and other assorted matters. And, as an additional requirement, letters of recommendation are sometimes required. The truth is, a letter of recommendation can boost your chances of acceptance. So let’s take a look at some of the benefits of writing recommendation letters.


1. A Look at Your Interests

You’re a more complete being than the one-dimensional caricature represented in grade scores and transcripts. So let your personal interests and extra-curricular life shine through. A good letter of recommendation details the things you’re passionate about: sports, musical interests, volunteer activities, even hobbies that you might not think your prospective college would be much interested in hearing about. All of this generates a picture of who you are beyond the dry statistical outline provided by scores and transcripts.

2. Understanding Your Strengths

Another key importance of letters of recommendation is that they can showcase your many strengths. This is particularly important when using a letter shared by a teacher associated with the major you hope to pursue. Again, this tends to highlight your dedication to your chosen field in a manner that goes beyond grade scores. A good letter of recommendation will demonstrate your intellectual strengths and passion for the subject. So it’s important when requesting a letter to choose a teacher or other professional associated with the subject you wish to major in. This will tend to make a greater impression. To help you craft an email request for a letter of recommendation, check out these templates.

3. A Look at Your Relationships

Remember that letters of recommendation also provide a glimpse into your relationships with teachers and your school. This is just another part of painting a fuller picture of who you are, so the admissions board can imagine how you’ll fit into their school. A letter of recommendation will show them how you work and get along with teachers and faculty members and go a long way to strengthening your case.

4. Your Role in the Community

Obviously, a letter of recommendation will illustrate what role you play in the wider community. Do you volunteer regularly? What’s the depth of your involvement in the local community? These are the sorts of things that an admissions board would like to know when considering your application.

5. A Glimpse of Your Direction in Life

Ultimately, letters of recommendation will show the admissions board where you’re heading in life. A discussion of not only your work in the classroom but your science projects, after-school laboratory commitments, etc., will further highlight your commitment to (for instance) a career in science.

Letters of Recommendation Depict the Real You

The point of letters of recommendation is that they add a little extra depth to your application. Rather than a faceless, one-dimensional assemblage of stats, a letter of recommendation paints a clearer picture of you and your future. Are you looking for more tips on education and schooling? Check out the many great articles on the rest of our blog.

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