positivetension-

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Oct 15, 2014
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Is it necessary to have ALL LORs in before your file will be considered and you will potentially be given an II? What if you are only missing one? My referees are taking their time and it's the only thing I'm waiting on.

(I did a cursory search on the forums, and it seems the answer is yes, but I just wanted clarification if all LORs needed to be in, or if there is some leniency, or it's school dependent, etc.)
 

NotASerialKiller

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Jul 7, 2015
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Did you send a packet? If so then yes every letter has to come in before anyone will evaluate your secondaries. If you sent individual letters then I think there might be potential to cancel one if it's taking too long and isn't crucial (one the school specifically asked for), but obviously this isn't ideal. Someone might be able to tell you how this is done, if it's even possible.
 
Sep 3, 2014
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Did you send a packet? If so then yes every letter has to come in before anyone will evaluate your secondaries. If you sent individual letters then I think there might be potential to cancel one if it's taking too long and isn't crucial (one the school specifically asked for), but obviously this isn't ideal. Someone might be able to tell you how this is done, if it's even possible.
This is not always true. I know someone last year who got a pre-secondary interview invite, and his letters were not in either (at University of Michigan).
 
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catie_jane

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Jun 12, 2015
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WVU sends interviews w/o LOR but I am assuming this is a rare case
 

DoctorWhat

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Feb 9, 2015
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I received two II's this year before my committee letter was received by schools.
 

Doug Underhill

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Some schools will review your file once it has received the minimum number of LORs if one has not yet arrived.
 

gonnif

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Every school will have their own workflow including differing procedures/standards for II, who may be authorized to decide that, and how applications are reviewed and evaluated. For example, a school's adcom may set some criteria prior for "high level" or "outstanding" candidates and the adcom director has authority for II to these. Some may have long time admissions director, active associate dean, etc, who will pull files of what they consider a worthwhile candidate. Some may split up applications into subcommittees or individual readers who find something worthwhile and arrange an invite. Others may have stricter protocols. So there are multiple steps and people reviewing applications. It isnt one monolithic "review." In my experience, most schools dont offer significant number of invites until the entire file is complete. That is not necessarily complete from everything you have listed, but complete from their perspective which could be 1 committee letter or 3 individual letters. Some may not consider it complete until all the letters you have listed are. In short, everything prior to a full/final vote of acceptance, rejection, and waitlist, does not necessarily have everything in your file. Trying to discern a pattern that may be different for different individuals and different schools is a waste of time, energy and effort and does nothing but increase paranoia around Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt, the dreaded FUD factor.
 
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