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LOR Questions

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omgitssum1

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I will be applying the upcoming cycle (when the app opens this June) and was a bit confused about how LORs work and general questions about professors for LORs. From what I understand, once I fill in the info of my evaluators in the app, they will receive an email with instructions and everything is out of my control after that... correct?

If this is the case...
1. When exactly should I ask my professors for a LOR? Our school's semester ends mid-May and I have a gap year afterwards (may not have the chance to meet them in person after summer begins).
2. I don't understand what exactly I should tell my professors if the app doesn't open until June. Do I ask them to prepare the letter before June and email them during the summer when the app opens with further instructions?
3. Finally, some general LOR questions. Is it alright to email them asking if they would be willing to write a LOR for me and possibly set up a meeting time to talk? Is a resume enough or should I prepare additional materials for them? How should I deal with asking one of my professors (who I also do research with) to write a letter - that is, would a letter written from the perspective of both a professor and a PI (in one letter) be better or worse than separate letters? Finally, if 4 letters are allowed by the app, will I be given the option later on to choose which to send to schools?

Thanks for taking the time to help out.
 

sjv

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The above is correct, once they send it in and the letter is marked "completed", it is out of your hands and no changes can be made, the letter will be sent out in the following mailing.

1. It seems most people will ask a couple/few months ahead of time as professors are either slow or busy or both. Asking in April or May should be sufficient. Best way would be to do ask you said and ask ahead of time and then once the application opens in June, input their information which will send them the link to upload the letter. The other option is paying for a subscription to Interfolio and then they can upload the letters anytime and then you control when you send them AADSAS for addition to your application.
2. Each professor will generally handle the timeline differently, some may have it ready in a week while some may take months and you need to remind them. They shouldn't have an issue holding onto the letter for a few weeks because the application hasn't opened yet.
3. Yes, email or ask them in person, won't matter. Depends on the professor, if they know you well, they might not need anything but some may ask for transcript, resume/CV, personal statement, maybe even DAT scores, really is on a case by case basis. Shouldn't have any issues with research vs didactic work, he should have alot to say! You are free to add/delete letter writers until the letter writer has submitted the letter and it is marked complete, once that happens you can't touch it. So you can't choose which to send, only the 4 that you've input and have been uploaded, so choose wisely if you have more than 4 as these 4 letters will be sent to all schools designated.
 

dieanotherday

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my profs required: unofficial transcript, resume, personal statement, official deadlines, and list of schools I was applying to
 

omgitssum1

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Thanks guys for the answers and advice! They were extremely helpful.
 

Glimmer1991

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Check the AADSAS FAQs link in my signature. It'll help with Interfolio, as well as a lot of other application question stuff. :)
 
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