When planning to study abroad, there are certain documents that are essential to your application and are instrumental in your selection to your targeted colleges. The LOR which refers to a Letter of Recommendation is one such document. A well-written LOR can help your application stand out from the rest, since it is essentially a document from your employer or professor stating your achievements and contribution to an organization, thus adding credibility to your application. Writing a LOR that effectively communicates your skills is crucial and can seem confusing, therefore, here are a few LOR samples for students to give you a better idea of the LOR format.
This Blog Includes:
- What does LOR mean?
- Who Writes a Letter of Recommendation?
- Types of Letter of Recommendation
- Essential Tips to Keep in Mind While Writing LOR
- LOR Samples for Students: Basic Format
- LOR Template
- LOR Samples
- Mistakes to Avoid in LOR
- LOR Skills Highlights
- LOR Guidelines
- How to Select a Good Recommender for LOR?
- Key Points to Remember in LOR Formatting
What does LOR mean?
The LOR is a document that allows the admission officer of the concerned university in getting a comprehensive insight into your suitable candidature for admission in a particular course. The primary aim of this letter is to get a clearer and favourable picture of your past experience, skills, achievements and contribution communicated by the recommender through the LOR. Any candidate who is planning to study abroad requires at least 3 LOR’s irrespective of the course that they are going for, in the concerned university or college.
Who Writes a Letter of Recommendation?
1. First, it should be someone you have worked with in the past; who is acquainted with your work and personality.
2. Secondly, the recommendation must be from someone who is your senior. Asking for a recommendation letter from your peers and juniors is not advisable.
3. Thirdly, it must be someone who was impacted by your work positively. Seeking a recommendation from someone who doesn’t understand your work or its impact will not do justice to your application.
Candidates who have just graduated can approach their professors or supervisors for the letter. People who own their business or run a family business can approach their vendors, bankers, advisors, clients, audition, investors for a letter. It is important to not ask your family members to write a recommendation letter for you.
Types of Letter of Recommendation
An academic LOR is a recommendation letter provided by the faculty member of your previous academic institution. This could be a teacher, school counsellor or principal from your school if you’re applying for an undergraduate program or a professor, project guide or a dean from your college if you’re going for a masters’ degree in a university abroad.
There are a lot of universities and colleges abroad offering MBA programs that have pre-defined work experience requirements. While applying for an academic degree abroad, universities ask candidates to attach a professional LOR along with an updated CV or a resume. The professional LOR comes from an immediate supervisor, team leader, or manager and the content varies from an academic LOR in terms of more specific information about the candidate’s work within the team, knowledge about the sector, his/her behavior, and leadership abilities. To help you understand each one of these better there are LOR samples for students in the later section of this blog.
Essential Tips to Keep in Mind While Writing LOR
A letter of recommendation is usually a 400-500 word essay, unless and otherwise specified by the university or college. This letter talks about the candidate’s skills, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. One of the most important points to be kept in mind is that the information must be accurate and ensure that you are mentioning the nature of the association and its tenure. Below are some basic formats to be kept in mind while working on your LOR which are also provided in the LOR samples for students:
- Most of the universities require the LOR to be on the official letterhead of the previous institution or the company.
- While issuing a professional LOR, you must ensure that the recommender is someone who is still working in the company.
- You must understand that a LOR is not a repetition of an SOP because they are two different documents altogether.
- An ideal LOR is required to demonstrate various perspectives and aspects of your personality that are not stated in your resume or SOP. Therefore, the LOR comes from a recommender who knows you better and has witnessed the quality of your work and is satisfied with your contributions and excellence.
Also Read: SOP Samples for MS
LOR Samples for Students: Basic Format
Usually, universities request for 2 or 3 LORs from teachers and faculty members for candidates applying to the UG courses, however, it is recommended that you choose a recommender who has taught you the subject essential for your admission and course of study. Here is the basic LOR format:
|To Whomsoever It May Concern|
|First Paragraph: Introduction
The Introductory paragraph as demonstrated in LOR talks about the recommender’s credentials such as the name, title, college or company name, city and his/her relationship with the student. The following details are mentioned in the first paragraph: For how long has the recommender known the student. Highlight the student’s stand through accurate information about his/her work and attributes etc.
|Second Paragraph: Discuss Major Quality
This paragraph deals with one of the essential qualities of the student such as research aptitude, academic prowess, leadership, teamwork, organizational skills, ability in thinking out of the box, taking initiative, work ethic and maturity. You can mention an example that relates to explaining these qualities in the student. This is considered to be an important aspect of a LOR depicting that the student is indeed filled with exceptional qualities.
|Third Paragraph: Discuss other Qualities
These should be different than the one already mentioned above, highlighting another quality of the student through claims to support the qualities mentioned. With the help of such instances, the admission officer of the concerned university gets to know the potential of the student and that the recommender is not mentioning any false information. The LOR samples for students provide information on this point.
|Fourth Paragraph: Talk about some more Qualities
You can talk about co-curricular achievements or anything in the field of sports. It can highlight qualities like teamwork, enthusiasm and an all-rounded personality.
|Fifth Paragraph: The Conclusion
As evident, this is the closing paragraph of the LOR. It summarizes the student’s strengths through the enthusiastic endorsement by the recommender for their candidacy.
|Salutations like Best wishes, Best regards, Yours faithfully or Yours sincerely
Name of the Recommender, Designation, School, City, Contact, Email are mentioned in this part of the LOR.
To assist you more on the topic of how to write a LOR, we have devised the template for you:
To Whom This May Concern
My name is ——- (Recommender Name) and I am obliged to offer my recommendation of —– (Candidate’s full name) to whom I have personally known for —— (number of years or months) at ——- (location).
During the course of my relationship with —- (candidate’s name), I have observed that she/he shows up earlier than asked, is a team player, works hard and carries her/his work in a humble and polite manner. Being a diligent employee, —- (Candidate’s name) best quality is to get the most out of others while maintaining the decorum of the workplace. Hence, without any reservation, I recommend ——- (Candidate’s full name) for this program at ——- (University’s name).
For any queries, you can contact me at-
There are different types of LOR depending on the course and recommender itself, but it is crucial to pay attention to the formatting style and overall hygiene of the document. To help you with the application process, we have attached a few LOR samples for students below:
LOR Samples for UG Admission
LOR Sample for MS Program
Professional LOR Samples
The LOR is an important document in the application process and it cannot be taken lightly. Thus, it is essential for you to build a strong rapport with either your professor or your employer so that they can vouch for your dedication and hard work.
Below are some downloadable pdf versions of the LOR samples that can give you a better idea about their format.
Mistakes to Avoid in LOR
- The first & foremost mistake everyone should avoid is copying LOR from the internet & submitting it. It is prohibited & also reduces your chances for admission.
- LOR should be written by a qualified person. You can not let your friends or relatives write a letter for you. It should be written by a person that knows your academic background & achievements and bit personally.
- Nothing can ruin your LOR other than spelling mistakes, make sure you proofread it before sending it to the authority
- Make sure you add all the information in your LOR, missing any relevant information might list you down.
- Give the person a time of 2-3 weeks for writing LOR, Give your recommender a proper time. Rushing things might ruin your LOR.
LOR Skills Highlights
We are mentioning some key skills in case you don’t miss out on your LOR. There are some skills that can be mentioned in your LORs & these skills can make you stand out from the list of other applicants. Remember to use some of these skills & not add all of these in your LOR.
- Team player & ability to perform task solo.
- Communication skills
- Research skills
- Leadership Skills
- Social skills
- Co-curricular activities
It is important that you follow the instructed guidelines for LOR & avoid making mistakes. Here are some common guidelines and LOR formats you can follow while writing a LOR.
- LOR should not be handwritten.
- LOR font should be size 11 & in black color.
- Avoid grammatical & spelling errors.
- Do not exceed the word limit of 500-600.
- Don’t exaggerate the points.
- If the university requires 2-3 LOR, make sure they have different content.
How to Select a Good Recommender for LOR?
There are two types of LOR, Academic and professional. Academic LOR requires a LOR from your school or university. While Professional LOR requires a letter from the organization you are working at. Here are recommenders you can consider for LOR:
- Research head
- Project Guide
- Department Head
- School teachers
- University professor
- Reporting Manager
Here are a few things you should know about before selecting a recommender for LOR
- Select the recommender you have closely worked with or worked under their supervision.
- Recommenders from the higher posts are valued but they may not know about you personally & your qualities. Instead of choosing someone of a higher post, choose the recommender that knows about you professionally & personally.
- Choose a recommender that can showcase your qualities & also qualified to write a LOR.
- Lastly, don’t force anyone to write a LOR for you. Select the recommender that is glad & willing to write a LOR for you.
Key Points to Remember in LOR Formatting
You know about the basic format of LOR, here are some important key points that should be kept in mind:
- Write your LOR in A4 size paper.
- LOR should be written in black color & background color should be white.
- LOR font size should be 11-12
- One-inch margin from the page should be maintained.
Every university requires 2-3 LORs from their applicants.
LOR should be 500-600 words.
Universities demand a LOR to know & understand better about the applicants. LOR also gives an opportunity to applicants to showcase their skills & talents in the best way possible.
Yes, recommenders can give a personal touch to the LOR by describing the personal & professional relationship with the applicant.
You have already mentioned it on the application form & CV. You can mention other qualities than grades or scores.
Yes, you can approach your college principal to write a letter of recommendation but he/she may not have known you personally. It is better to ask your college professors.
We hope you have understood the correct way to write a LOR through our given LOR samples. If you are facing trouble with your LOR, the experts at Leverage Edu can help you curate the perfect LOR to ensure that all your strengths and aspirations are being highlighted in the best possible manner. So that no stone is left turned on the way to your dream college. all us immediately at 1800 57 2000 for a free 30-minute counselling session.