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Is this a good letter?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by 6-8 Weeks, Aug 4, 2001.

  1. 6-8 Weeks

    6-8 Weeks Senior Member
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    Is this a good letter? My professor was kind enough to let me see it. He starts off talking about my performance in his class, then talks about the rigors of the class, then goes to say that I am more than a student and talks about some of my extracirricular act and how he is impressed with them and at the end says that he is proud of what I have done. How is that? WHen I read it, it just didn't seem very good because he doesn't go into much detail, just on the surface. What do you think?
     
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  3. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
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    It sounds okay...I have seen a few of my letters b/c I didn't do them confidential and the good ones seem to use examples..such as "scooby sometimes even pointed out errors i had made and was always smiling when I saw him in section or during office hours. He would not hesitate to come to me with questions and his presence in section helped things flow etc etc etc"...None of my letters include any reference to my EC's b/c that's not as important. I think the best thing is that they identify you on a personal level. What the adcoms want to know is "does this person really know the other person?" If so, then what makes them special?
    Wish I could be of more help...
     
  4. twister

    twister Member
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    I agree with Scooby Doo. Adcoms don't know you, they rely on your letters from people who know you. If something really bothers you - and it hasn't been sent - and your prof is receptive and approachable, think about talking with her/him. One of my letter writers told me that if something needed to be changed in my letter, we would try to work it out.
    However, be careful. I've also been completely criticized and insulted in a letter (which I unfortunatly found out too late - long story). Slightly vague but positive is better than being trashed in a letter. Getting trashed will keep you out, no matter what your stats/ECs are.
     
  5. star23

    star23 Senior Member
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    I think it is best to do confidential letters and before asking someone for a letter be sure to ask them if they feel they can write a STRONG letter for you.
     
  6. Popoy

    Popoy SDN Super Moderator
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    star is right, but if that's the only letter you get then you don't have much of a choice.... it's better than nothing....
     
  7. gower

    gower 1K Member
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    Since most applicants ask for letters from professors in class where high grades were earned, a letter which addresses only the high grades is next to useless. It is in fact those little personal commentaries that are the heart and muscle of what the letter should address. Where else, except from the personal comments essay students write about themselves, can a person, an individual, a personality, emerge from among all those wearing the premedical student uniform (too often a straitjacket)?

    There are times when most meaningful is a detailed warm, glowing letter from a teacher in a course where the student may not have earned the best grade, but was none-the-less a standout, and may be enough to carry the day.

    It is perfectly permissible to think out of the box when soliciting letters.
     
  8. 6-8 Weeks

    6-8 Weeks Senior Member
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    Hmm, thanks for all the info SDNers, I actually have sent these out to about 10 or so schools and unfortunately is my only non-science letter. So am I screwed or will my other letters (which I know are good) make up for it?
     
  9. Scooby Doo

    Scooby Doo IEatShavedPussyCats
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    Don't worry too much about it.
    I just found out today that my boss who wrote me a letter didn't make it personal at all! He basically talked about my research and crap like that. I am not in a good mood now b/c I have sent that to about 8 schools so far and i was counting on his letter being really good! argh!
     
  10. serpiente

    serpiente Senior Member
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    Yeah, don't worry too much. One mediocre letter (as long as it's notinsulting or anything) won't hurt you. Emphasize to the next people whom you ask for recs (or tell those who haven't written them yet) that the letter needs to be personal and non-generic.
     
  11. serpiente

    serpiente Senior Member
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    Yeah, don't worry too much. One mediocre letter (as long as it's not insulting or anything) won't hurt you. Emphasize to the next people whom you ask for recs (or tell those who haven't written them yet) that the letter needs to be personal and non-generic.
     

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