*~*~*~*Official Letters of Recommendation Questions Thread 2018-2019*~*~*~*

Lucca

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Disclaimer: This post was not written by me, it has been passed down through the ages over a campfire.

This thread is for 2019 applicants (those who will be entering medical school in 2019) to ask questions about letters of recommendation.

Any separate threads in Pre-Allo dealing with this topic will be merged into this thread.

Before asking a question, PLEASE READ THE FAQ, both here in this thread AND on the AMCAS website! It is quite possible that your question will have already been answered. If you think that you have a different take on a question in the FAQ, acknowledge this in your question; everyone in pre-allo will be much more likely to help you out if they think you've done due diligence.

LINK TO LAST YEAR'S THREAD

Also, each thread has a search function. Please use it before asking your question by clicking the "Search this Thread" button near the top of the page.

This thread is brought to you by the Pre-Allopathic Volunteer Staff. Ask away, and good luck!!


Frequently Asked Questions

1. What kinds of letters do I need to apply to medical school?
For most schools, you need a MINIMUM of two letters from science professors, and 1 letter from a non-science professor. If you have done research, a letter from your PI is also recommended, especially at research-intensive schools. (If you know of any exceptions to this rule, feel free to post in this thread with citations and I will add them). Other letters that may be helpful: a letter from an employer who knows your skills well, a letter from a physician you shadowed/worked with who knows your skills well, a letter from a volunteer coordinator who knows your skills well. The key is that the letters be exceptional. A detailed letter that can give clear examples of why you are an excellent candidate for medical school will generally trump a tepid letter from a famous person. Every school is different. Please check each school's individual letter requirements by visiting their website.A copy of an XLS spreadsheet from 2010 is attached to this post. The accuracy of this spreadsheet is unknown so be sure to check individual school websites! Keep in mind that a committee letter usually overrides any specific school requirements listed on the spreadsheet.
1a. But doesn't every school have different letter requirements?
Yes, they do. Do your homework, buy an MSAR (I hear from this thread that the way to go is to buy online access because the hard copy is not as useful:http://forums.studentdoctor.net/showthread.php?t=811023), and look at the school websites. Also, AMCAS has a link to every school; use it and figure out what you need for the schools you're applying to. https://www.aamc.org/students/applyi...ating_schools/You can get a rough idea from the attached XLS spreadsheet but check school websites to confirm.
1b. But do I really really have to get X type of letter? (2 non-science, 1 science, a letter from my PI)
The short answer: yes. The long answer: Maybe...it depends on the school. No one on SDN can answer this for you. But the general rule in medical school admissions is do what you are told. Get the two science letters. If you can't...call the schools you're applying to and see if they will make an exception. But be aware that the answer may be no.

2. I am a non-traditional student and have been out of school for awhile. Can I get around the letter requirements?

The simple answer is probably no. If you are a non-traditional student, this doesn't mean that you have an easier time getting into medical school; the same hoops still need to be jumped through. Being out of school for awhile is likely a problem in itself; schools want to see recent evidence that you can handle the coursework necessary to get through medical school. Take some classes, form relationships, and get the letters you need to. If you must, you can contact each school individually to see if they would be ok with you submitting alternate letters, but be aware that the answer may be "no".

3. My school has a medical school admissions committee, and they produce a committee letter. But the letter won't be released until really LATE! (August, September, October). Can I just skip the committee and collect my own letters?
The general wisdom on this topic is that if your school has a committee, USE IT! If you don't, you will be asked why and will need a very good reason. You are circumventing the committee at your own risk.

4. How/when can I submit letters of req to AMCAS?
Once the application opens in May, you may begin submitting letters to AMCAS. Before you can mail a letter in, you must "create' the letter in your AMCAS application. This involves you telling AMCAS who the letter writer is and naming the letter in AMCAS. AMCAS will then give this letter an ID number. It is important for you to give your letter writer both your AMCAS ID number and the Letter ID number to avoid any snafus with lost letters. Your letter writer can then mail the letter into AMCAS with these two pieces of information, and the letter will be uploaded to your file and will be available to assign to any school you wish. I am told that while AMCAS will accept documents without your AMCAS ID on them, you MUST have the Letter ID or AMCAS will not accept it. I don't have firsthand knowledge of whether or not this is true.

You can create and submit letters at any time, including after you submit your application and after you are verified. This is one of the few parts of the application you can edit after submission.

5. Do I have to know which letters are going to which school when I first submit my AMCAS application?
NO! You can submit your application without assigning letters. Again, this is one of the few parts of the application that can be altered later. HOWEVER, once you assign a letter to a school, you CANNOT un-assign it. If the letter is present in AMCAS, and you assign it to a school, it WILL go to that school. However, if you "create" the letter in AMCAS, assign it to a school, but your letter writer never sends the letter in, you can notify AMCAS (and the school, through the AMCAS application) that the letter will no longer be sent.

6. How many schools use the AMCAS Letter service?
This year, it looks like all but 4 schools that participate in AMCAS are participating in the letter service. Those non-participating schools are:
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center School of Medicinein Shreveport
Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans
Universidad Central Del Caribe
University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine.

The participating schools can be found here: https://www.aamc.org/students/applyi...ating_schools/

7. Is it in my best interest to have my letter writers write different letters for each school?
Probably not. AMCAS can only hold a maximum of 10 letters for you. If you need a minimum of 3 letters for each school, these slots will be used up rather quickly.

8. What are letter services such as Interfolio, and why do people use them?
Interfolio and other companies provide secure online letter holding services. You can have your letters uploaded to these services at any time so that you're not scrambling at the last minute (or during the summer!) to get letters into your application. This can be especially beneficial when you are 9 months or so out from your planned application cycle, but know the professor you have NOW will write you a great letter. You can have them write the letter, upload it to a letter service, and then many months later have the letter sent to AMCAS once the application opens. When you do this, you have the ability to add on both your AMCAS ID and the Letter ID to the letter. All your letter writer needs to do is upload the letter (or mail it in) on letterhead and with a signature. These sites are secure and they do not allow you to read the letter beforehand.

9. What else about letters do I need to know?
Your letter must be SIGNED, and should be on OFFICIAL LETTERHEAD whenever possible. This is something that holds people up every year. Some schools will even hold up your application because of this. Also, AMCAS has a beautiful FAQ dealing with letters here: https://www.aamc.org/students/applyi...ding_page.html

10. How should I ask someone for a letter of req?
On this one, I will give my own experience. For each letter writer, I prepared a packet. In the packet I had:
A list of all of my science grades (or non-science grades for a non-science prof)
A copy of my resume
A rough draft of my personal statement
A guide to writing medical school letters (which can be found by googling), a reminder that the letter needed to be signed and on letterhead.

Before handing them this (because who wants all that before they even say yes!) I asked them point blank if they "would feel comfortable writing me a strong letter of recommendation for medical school". Always do this in person!!! If they hesitate...walk away. Seriously. You don't want this person writing your letter.

When they enthusiastically said yes, I pulled the packet out of my backpack and gave it to them.

Because I used Interfolio, I did not need to provide them with my AMCAS ID or Letter ID, but instead told them that they would get an email from Interfolio that evening with instructions on how to upload the letter. Give them a FIRM deadline (2-4 weeks seems to work best) for when you need the letter. Don't ask at the last minute. Don't ask when you think a billion other people will be asking. Do offer to provide them with any other supplementary information they would like. And do give them a thank-you note (and maybe a Starbucks card) when they submit the letter.

11. OMG! My letter writer has not written my letter!!! It has been minutes/hours/days/weeks/months and I'm freaking out!! What do I do!?
First, stop by or email and gently remind them that you need the letter by X date. If this doesn't work, I have given them a premature Thank-You note with a small token, and this seems to light a fire. I recommended this method to someone on SDN last year and it apparently worked like a charm.

If this isn't working....you do the same thing you do whenever something goes awry - find a plan B. Ask someone else...two other people even, just in case this person does not come through. You can't have too many letters. But you can have too few.

12. Do I have to waive my right to see the letters?
No. But if you don't schools might not see them as letters that carry much weight. Waive your right. If you know the person well enough, you should have a pretty good idea of what they are going to write.

13. If I apply this June, and I have given every school my 5 chosen LOR's with committee letter through AMCAS virtual evals upload by my prehealth office, and then I get anther LOR over the summer/fall and want to send it to all schools in December, do I have to have the prof mail it to all 25 schools or will AMCAS distribute it?

or, tl;dr: Can I submit my application without the letters?
You can add a letter at ANY time in AMCAS, have it sent to AMCAS, and AMCAS will distribute it.
You may want to shoot an email to each school letting them know to expect another letter just in case. They should be updating your file continuously (they will want your current contact info, and often people change their addresses mid cycle) but they may not always do it in a timely manner.

Please send me a PM if you know of additional questions suitable for the FAQ.
 

gonnif

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Here are some additional useful and official links from AAMC/AMCAS on letters, including a school by school policy on letters and guidelines for what information your letters writers should include. These guidelines, which are both linked and attached as files should be give to each of your letter writers when requesting a recommendation. Survey evidence has shown this helpful to the writers when preparing letters for you. Additionally, you may want to attach links to the AAMC Letter Service and/or Letter Service tutorial when requesting a letter. Anything that makes a writers task easier is alway appreciated. Also linked below are information and various tasks that applicants ask about frequently .

AMCAS Medical Schools Letter of Evaluation Policies (update Oct 2016)

AAMC Letter Writers Guide (Brochure)
AAMC Letters Writer Guide (Handout)
Letters of Evaluation Guidelines for Writers/Advisors
AAMC Letter Service for Advisors/Writers
AAMC Letter Service Tutorial for Advisors/Writers
AAMC Survey on Guidelines
AMCAS Section 6: Letters of Evaluation
AMCAS Letters FAQ
Core Competencies for Entering Medical Students
Ask Admissions Webinar: How to Select Letter Writers and What Admissions Committees Learn About You
 
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Lucca

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I asked this over in PS but I’ll ask it here too just to be safe: MD/PhD programs want LoRs from all of your PIs as well as 2 Sci Profs. At the moment I have a letter from a PI who was also a science professor (I took his course). Can I double dip here?
 

acslater99

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I want to apply to MD/DO programs in the near future but I was wondering since, some DO schools don’t necessarily require LoR’s from a DO physician now, will an MD LoR be just as good in replacement for DO LoR for the programs I plan to apply to?

In my area it seems that MD’s are the only ones who are available or are willing to let pre-meds shadow.
 

ChickRick16

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I'm aware that it is highly recommended that if we do research, we should have a LOR from our PI. I am in need of some advice regarding this. I have 2 separate research experiences with 2 separate PIs; the first I did for about 9 months during my junior year of college and the other I did for about 4 months during the end of my senior year of college (for reference, I graduated in May 2017 and am about to start my second gap year). My questions are:

1. I have not spoken to my PI from my first, more extensive, research experience since I left the lab. Should I still try to obtain a LOR from them even though I do not believe it will be that strong of a recommendation?
2. Although the second research experience wasn't as extensive (it was a course-based research project) I developed a very good relationship with my PI/professor and they have already said they would write a strong letter of recommendation for me. Would this be sufficient? Or do you think I need a LOR from the first PI as well?
 

gonnif

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I asked this over in PS but I’ll ask it here too just to be safe: MD/PhD programs want LoRs from all of your PIs as well as 2 Sci Profs. At the moment I have a letter from a PI who was also a science professor (I took his course). Can I double dip here?
1) Why would ask this in PS?
2) Why would you double post?
3) Why would think that they are looking for separate letters?
4) Are MD/PhD applicants double neurotic premeds?

Of course a letter from a science prof who is also your PI count.
 

gonnif

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I'm aware that it is highly recommended that if we do research, we should have a LOR from our PI. I am in need of some advice regarding this. I have 2 separate research experiences with 2 separate PIs; the first I did for about 9 months during my junior year of college and the other I did for about 4 months during the end of my senior year of college (for reference, I graduated in May 2017 and am about to start my second gap year). My questions are:

1. I have not spoken to my PI from my first, more extensive, research experience since I left the lab. Should I still try to obtain a LOR from them even though I do not believe it will be that strong of a recommendation?
2. Although the second research experience wasn't as extensive (it was a course-based research project) I developed a very good relationship with my PI/professor and they have already said they would write a strong letter of recommendation for me. Would this be sufficient? Or do you think I need a LOR from the first PI as well?
1) Why do you think the first PI wouldnt write a strong letter? What did you do research on? Did you produce anything (poster, pub, etc)
2) The higher the school, the more likely you should have letters from both. What would it say that you list a longer research experience but no letter.
 
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I am a reapp and originally had 2 science LOR, and a mentor LOR (stood in place of my non science letter). I am unable to reach my english professor who was amazing and I took her class 2 years ago. I have another english professor from 6 years ago (during my post secondary years) who would be able to write a letter but would this possible be a red flag that my professor from so long ago is writing a letter and someone not as recent? This time around Ill have the 3 letters above, letter from my PI, letter from community service volunteering, the english professor from 6 years ago, and maybe a letter form my lab supervisor.
 

Gilakend

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1) Why would ask this in PS?
2) Why would you double post?
3) Why would think that they are looking for separate letters?
4) Are MD/PhD applicants double neurotic premeds?

Of course a letter from a science prof who is also your PI count.
Question peripherally related to that. Is a PI who you never took a traditional course with, but took a research class for credit considered a science professor LOR?
 

gonnif

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I am a reapp and originally had 2 science LOR, and a mentor LOR (stood in place of my non science letter). I am unable to reach my english professor who was amazing and I took her class 2 years ago. I have another english professor from 6 years ago (during my post secondary years) who would be able to write a letter but would this possible be a red flag that my professor from so long ago is writing a letter and someone not as recent? This time around Ill have the 3 letters above, letter from my PI, letter from community service volunteering, the english professor from 6 years ago, and maybe a letter form my lab supervisor.
Which red flag is that: not having a non-science academic letter (which some schools require) or having an old letter? And if you dont have a non-science academic letter, will some schools simply reject you on a "technical" issue? And in this day and age, you should be able to find anyone if you look. Try Facebook, LinkedIn or even the few bucks for a paid service like Spokeo.
 
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Which red flag is that: not having a non-science academic letter (which some schools require) or having an old letter? And if you dont have a non-science academic letter, will some schools simply reject you on a "technical" issue? And in this day and age, you should be able to find anyone if you look. Try Facebook, LinkedIn or even the few bucks for a paid service like Spokeo.
Yeah Im going to try other ways to reach out to her. I had a mentor write me a LOR and he was a non science professor but also didnt teach me so I dont think it held as much weight. I didnt know if schools would be like "why did he get this letter froma professor 6 years ago if he had all of these other classes he took after that?" since the class was during post secondary and not from the school where I got my degree.
 
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ladymiresa

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Does one actually list a letter as "non-science"? If so, will the letter writer know that they've been given this label? My best/pretty much only option for a non-science LOR is from my psych professor, but I don't want to offend them bc they have dr in neuroscience, although they are listed as psych faculty. They taught me classes that might be considered science, like psychopharm and cogscience, but I'm fine with listing these courses as non-BCPM if it validates that the professor is non-science.

I see that you can submit your primary before your letters are written. Will you not receive any secondaries until after the letters have been received? Basically, when should my deadline for my profs be for my application to still be early?
 

gonnif

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Does one actually list a letter as "non-science"? If so, will the letter writer know that they've been given this label? My best/pretty much only option for a non-science LOR is from my psych professor, but I don't want to offend them bc they have dr in neuroscience, although they are listed as psych faculty. They taught me classes that might be considered science, like psychopharm and cogscience, but I'm fine with listing these courses as non-BCPM if it validates that the professor is non-science.

I see that you can submit your primary before your letters are written. Will you not receive any secondaries until after the letters have been received? Basically, when should my deadline for my profs be for my application to still be early?
1) AMCAS BCPM listing has nothing, repeat, nothing to do with whether a class is science/non science. BCPM does not equal science
2) BCPM classification is solely based on course content; not the department
3) each medical school set specific policy/guidelines/recommendation for letters. Every applicant should read each med schools's website for this info. Indeed, applicants should read indepth the website to any school that they are applying. Not doing do would see patently foolish on its face.
4) A professor of neuroscience who teaches psychopharm and cognitive science, would most definitely be considered a science professor. How would eve even consider that they would be non-science simply because they are in psych department?
5) go find a real nonscience prof from your course work and get an LOR. And if you say it will be a weak LOR, it is better than no nonscience LOR that may get you screened out on a technical issue for not having a required letter
 

ladymiresa

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1) AMCAS BCPM listing has nothing, repeat, nothing to do with whether a class is science/non science. BCPM does not equal science
2) BCPM classification is solely based on course content; not the department
3) each medical school set specific policy/guidelines/recommendation for letters. Every applicant should read each med schools's website for this info. Indeed, applicants should read indepth the website to any school that they are applying. Not doing do would see patently foolish on its face.
4) A professor of neuroscience who teaches psychopharm and cognitive science, would most definitely be considered a science professor. How would eve even consider that they would be non-science simply because they are in psych department?
5) go find a real nonscience prof from your course work and get an LOR. And if you say it will be a weak LOR, it is better than no nonscience LOR that may get you screened out on a technical issue for not having a required letter
The professors title is 'assistant professor of psychology' not neuroscience. Of the research I'd done, most seem to say that a psych professor is suitable for non-science letters, which is why I was planning to ask this prof. If you don't use the department to determine whether they're science or non-science... how can there be an consistency? This psych professor of mine taught me a psych research class and most of our interactions are from this context, so I'd think that would be the bulk of their letter.

How about a class like biostats from the math department? Would that fall under non-science? Sorry, I guess I'm just confused by the breakdown here.
 

gonnif

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The professors title is 'assistant professor of psychology' not neuroscience. Of the research I'd done, most seem to say that a psych professor is suitable for non-science letters, which is why I was planning to ask this prof. If you don't use the department to determine whether they're science or non-science... how can there be an consistency? This psych professor of mine taught me a psych research class and most of our interactions are from this context, so I'd think that would be the bulk of their letter.

How about a class like biostats from the math department? Would that fall under non-science? Sorry, I guess I'm just confused by the breakdown here.
Why is this so hard? Your professor is neuroscience and has taught you courses in that area. Many adcoms will not see him/her as non science, nor will they see a Biostats prof as non science. Where are the actual nonscience profs for English, history, other social sciences, that you have had?
 
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What do you do if you had a professor or employer write a LOR but they left the place/institution they used to work at? They can no longer use the letterhead so what would be someone's options?
 

ladymiresa

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Why is this so hard? Your professor is neuroscience and has taught you courses in that area. Many adcoms will not see him/her as non science, nor will they see a Biostats prof as non science. Where are the actual nonscience profs for English, history, other social sciences, that you have had?
It's not "hard", I'm just trying to understand the reasoning you're explaining because I have seen other posts that suggest psych professors can fulfill nonscience LOR. As far as "actual" non-science profs, I took those classes in high school for dual credit so didn't have college profs. I'm going through my transcript now to jog my memory if there are any professors I connected with in these fields, but I think the fact that I can't remember is a sign that it wouldn't be a strong letter.

edit: see, here, @gonnif you've given someone advice that seems opposite to what you're telling me now. So I'm just confused and seeking clarification. Would it be a good idea to speak to the professor and ask them if they feel like they would best represent me as a science vs non-science writer?
 
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I have to go ask for LOR from 3 professors next week. I get so nervous that they'll say No and what do u do at that moment like ok...bye
 

gonnif

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It's not "hard", I'm just trying to understand the reasoning you're explaining because I have seen other posts that suggest psych professors can fulfill nonscience LOR. As far as "actual" non-science profs, I took those classes in high school for dual credit so didn't have college profs. I'm going through my transcript now to jog my memory if there are any professors I connected with in these fields, but I think the fact that I can't remember is a sign that it wouldn't be a strong letter.

edit: see, here, @gonnif you've given someone advice that seems opposite to what you're telling me now. So I'm just confused and seeking clarification. Would it be a good idea to speak to the professor and ask them if they feel like they would best represent me as a science vs non-science writer?
1) you started this series by telling us you had a neuropsych professor teaching you obvious neuro courses
2) the letter they will write will detail your work in these courses which to most adcoms reading it will sound like the science letter it is
3) just because the prof is in the psych dept doesnt mean anything to what the letter will read like
4) if you had a psych prof teaching abnormal or developmental that would be fine as non science.
5) you have the common misperception that this is checking a box where in fact how the adcom reading the letter will percieve it matters.
6) since you cant know which adcoms at what schools will interpret the letter, you need to be clear to all schools by having a clearly nonscience teacher for a nonscience course writing it
7) all applicants need to use their judgement in this regard
8) with 80% of all applications at any individual school being rejected pre II simply due to thousands of applications needing to be reduced to hundreds of IIs, you dont want to give them a reason to reject outright
 
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gonnif

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What do you do if you had a professor or employer write a LOR but they left the place/institution they used to work at? They can no longer use the letterhead so what would be someone's options?
Use blank piece of paper where they simply say they are formerly of college x
 
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Is it ok to use the same letters if you are a re applicant if they change the date? No adcom I asked made any mention of LORs being my weakness and I asked my LOR writers if they could add a little update but not 100% sure it will happen.
 

gonnif

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Is it ok to use the same letters if you are a re applicant if they change the date? No adcom I asked made any mention of LORs being my weakness and I asked my LOR writers if they could add a little update but not 100% sure it will happen.
That is usually ok. If you are not currently involved in any activities with current LOR writer, there really isnt any reason for them to change anything other than a fresh date
 
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moxymed

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How bad will it look if I use LORs addressed to TMDSAS for my AMCAS app?

I don't actually know how my letter writers addressed them since I waived my right to see, but I suspect it was to TMDSAS since that's who they were told it was for.

I didn't even think of this when I asked for these letters a year ago. They are sitting in Interfolio. (Hopefully they are still good? I am a non-trad and they were a struggle to obtain.)
 

gonnif

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How bad will it look if I use LORs addressed to TMDSAS for my AMCAS app?

I don't actually know how my letter writers addressed them since I waived my right to see, but I suspect it was to TMDSAS since that's who they were told it was for.

I didn't even think of this when I asked for these letters a year ago. They are sitting in Interfolio. (Hopefully they are still good? I am a non-trad and they were a struggle to obtain.)
It is rather important that you contact them and have them updated for medical school in general rather than TMDSAS or AMCAS. There is a perception that non TMDSAS medcal schools may look at good Texas candidates as less likely to attend their since Texas schools are cheaper
 

PopeKnope98

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I am going to have 2 extremely strong non-science letters and 1 extremely strong science letter. My second science letter will be good, but my prof and I don’t know each other on a personal level that well, so it will naturally be a more generic letter.

My question is, for schools that have a max # of letters AND only require one science LOR (for example, GWU has a max of 5 and only 1 sci needed), do you think it’s okay that I said my 2 non-sci, my strong sci, and 4) a letter from a faculty advisor for a club and 5) from my employer at a doctor’s office I’ve worked at for 3 years, rather than the generic sci letter? I know having only one science is concerning, but those 5 letters are from people who know me well and know my skills, and I feel like they’ll help me out more. What do you think?
 

gonnif

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I am going to have 2 extremely strong non-science letters and 1 extremely strong science letter. My second science letter will be good, but my prof and I don’t know each other on a personal level that well, so it will naturally be a more generic letter.

My question is, for schools that have a max # of letters AND only require one science LOR (for example, GWU has a max of 5 and only 1 sci needed), do you think it’s okay that I said my 2 non-sci, my strong sci, and 4) a letter from a faculty advisor for a club and 5) from my employer at a doctor’s office I’ve worked at for 3 years, rather than the generic sci letter? I know having only one science is concerning, but those 5 letters are from people who know me well and know my skills, and I feel like they’ll help me out more. What do you think?
Yes you can do that, send in single science letter. What dept. is the faculty club advisor from?
 

PopeKnope98

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Yes you can do that, send in single science letter. What dept. is the faculty club advisor from?
She’s faculty from our Honors College, not even a PhD. I’m on the executive board for their student association. So nothing science related, lol.
 

BicycleGuy

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I'm receiving a committee letter, and in this package, they will include 6 letters of recommendation. Basically, I'm having a difficult time choosing which letters to include. The committee letter package has strict requirements: three science profs I've had classes with, one non-science prof I've had classes with, one physician, and one "wild-card." There are several people I want to include as my wild-card, but it comes down to my research mentor who I've been working for on-and-off for the last 6 years and the director of the science honors program I'm in and the faculty sponsor of the bicycle club (that I founded). Please help me choose!
 

gonnif

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One of my letter writers was my major advisor for my undergraduate degree and at the time of course she was an employee of my undergrad university and taught courses there. However, she is now working at a health department and is not employed by a school. She is still writing me a letter based on her experience with advising me as well as being one of my professors in a college course when she was associated with the university, should I say that she is associated with a school or not?
She is associated with it as she is writing from her time at the school
 
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gonnif

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I'm receiving a committee letter, and in this package, they will include 6 letters of recommendation. Basically, I'm having a difficult time choosing which letters to include. The committee letter package has strict requirements: three science profs I've had classes with, one non-science prof I've had classes with, one physician, and one "wild-card." There are several people I want to include as my wild-card, but it comes down to my research mentor who I've been working for on-and-off for the last 6 years and the director of the science honors program I'm in and the faculty sponsor of the bicycle club (that I founded). Please help me choose!
Research Mentor/director of science honors by fae
 

Force Healer

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I plan on requesting letters of rec from some professors I've built a good relationship with over this term. I'm in my third year and plan on taking a gap year so is it a bad idea to ask them to write them now since the date will be relatively old? But I fear waiting multiple years to ask since our relationship might fade or they might relocate over the years.
 
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If my committee letter won't be done until July or August, will I still be able to apply in June?
 

thepotentialdoc

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Should I have my letters together by the time I start submitting my secondaries? I saw somewhere that schools won't look at the app until the letters are there.
 

gonnif

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Should I have my letters together by the time I start submitting my secondaries? I saw somewhere that schools won't look at the app until the letters are there.
That would be optimal as the school wont look at an application until it is complete (primary, secondary, MCAT, LOR)
 

frosted2

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I just want to confirm that this is OK. I could not figure out for the life of me how to attach my AMCAS ID or LOR ID to the letter itself. So I just uploaded the LOR request itself and attached both:
upload_2018-5-7_21-19-17.png
 

gonnif

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I just want to confirm that this is OK. I could not figure out for the life of me how to attach my AMCAS ID or LOR ID to the letter itself. So I just uploaded the LOR request itself and attached both:
View attachment 233492
I am confused. You tried to attach this to the LOR itself or to your request to a professor for an LOR?
 
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Hi,

My school has a letter packet (not a committee letter) that they compile with all of my recommendation letters. The letter packet contains the set of letters I chose as well as information verifying the letters' authenticity, and also a cover letter that includes information about the school, such as its rigor.

Most of my recommendation letters will be able to meet the deadline that they set for the letter packet.

However, 1 of my letter writers will be unable to meet the deadline. This letter writer is for one of my science courses.

Will submitting this science letter individually (not included in the previously mentioned letter packet) affect my application negatively?

To give you some context, the other science faculty letter and my non-science faculty letter are inside the letter packet. Inside the letter packet, I also have 2 other letters (PI, extracurricular).

I know medical schools generally require 2 science LORs and 1 non-science LOR.

Thanks.
 

frosted2

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I am confused. You tried to attach this to the LOR itself or to your request to a professor for an LOR?
I attached the both the LOR and the request for the LOR that contains my AMCAS ID and the LOR request ID. I did not see anywhere to attach just the ID numbers themselves.
 

gonnif

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Not to sound snarky but your question is irrelevant. You are worrying about something you have no control over. so how would you act differently depending on your perception of school’s reaction other than to stress and worry. Move on
 
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gonnif

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I attached the both the LOR and the request for the LOR that contains my AMCAS ID and the LOR request ID. I did not see anywhere to attach just the ID numbers themselves.
And how pray tell do you have a copy of the LOR that you are submitting instead of the professor submitting it?
 
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Not to sound snarky but your question is irrelevant. You are worrying about something you have no control over. so how would you act differently depending on your perception of school’s reaction other than to stress and worry. Move on
Hey gonnif,

I appreciate all the time and effort you put in to answer these questions over the years. I've been lurking for the past 6 months on these LOR threads and you're always one of the top commenters and I appreciate your advice.

The reason being is that if it does impact my application negatively, I will just submit all 5 of them individually, instead of having 4 go through the letter packet and submitting 1 individually.

I would just like your feedback because you seem one of the most knowledgeable people on here.

Thanks.
 

gonnif

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gonnif

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Hey gonnif,

I appreciate all the time and effort you put in to answer these questions over the years. I've been lurking for the past 6 months on these LOR threads and you're always one of the top commenters and I appreciate your advice.

The reason being is that if it does impact my application negatively, I will just submit all 5 of them individually, instead of having 4 go through the letter packet and submitting 1 individually.

Thanks.
It wont be an issue
 
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Quick question. I got a Committee Letter from my institution, but for AMCAS I listed my prehealth advisor as the "Primary Contact/Author". She's not actually an author of the committee letter, but I don't know who is and it's a committee of over a dozen people. So is that okay? The committee letter itself also includes my 5 individual letters, but as I understood it I only needed to list the Committee Letter as one entry.
 
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