10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Sep 24, 2008
My third recommender seems to have very sparse email access (so it seems). I learned early this quarter that he was on sabbatical- away in a different state taking care of family. His admin informed me that he is busy but to email him anyway in case he can write for me. I did email him, didn't hear back from 3 weeks and was about to write him off and ask someone else, when out of the blue he emailed me back saying he would be "delighted to write a letter of recommendation for me."

Fast forward, it has been 2 weeks and I have sent a couple more emails with questions, and I haven't gotten a response. I am nervous that he does not check his email often. If so, how will he be able to upload his letter to the 10+ schools to which I am applying? A grad student friend suggested that I have his admin upload the letter, once he emails it to her.

Does anyone know if this is a good practice? Don't most online letter procedures come with ratings that the recommender must make- i.e. how would you rate this person's intellect/motivation/creativity. How would an admin be able to do that?

Thanks in advance for your help!


7+ Year Member
May 17, 2009
Psychology Student
Well I don't know about the admin thing, but I would strongly recommend that you ask people for more letters then you actually need in case he does not come through. I make this recommendation to everyone, even if they feel all their professors are 100% reliable. But in your case it is especially important. Many professors, even those who are brilliant researchers, are just not very reliable and you want to minimize the chance that they will destroy your chances with their negligence.
Dec 6, 2009
My recommender has her secretary do it for her. Just make sure the admin has the recommender's OK. Some schools ask for either ratings or letters, others ask for both.