The Department of Sociology & Anthropology

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Guidelines for Requesting a Letter of Recommendation Department of Sociology and Anthropology Muhlenberg College

In order to receive a letter of recommendation, you will need to provide your recommender with all necessary materials (see below), in a single package, no later than three weeks before the date on which the letter is due at the requesting institution. This will permit your recommender the time necessary to write a strong and considered letter for you.

Please compile the following and submit them to the recommender in a manila envelope on which you have written your name, Muhlenberg box number, home address, campus and home phone numbers, email address, the name of the requesting institution and the date on which the letter is due to be received by that requesting institution:

  1. all required recommendation forms
  2. a copy of your personal statement, if you have one prepared;
  3. a copy of your resume (preferred), or a bullet listing of your academic and extracurricular involvements (honors, awards, community service, athletics, student clubs, campus leadership, relevant work experience, etc.) while at Muhlenberg, including dates of award or participation;
  4. a copy of your most current transcript printed from Capstone, with all courses that you have taken in the Sociology & Anthropology Department highlighted.

If you are requesting multiple letters of recommendation, you should prepare copies of the above documents for each requesting institution and provide them to your recommender in separate manila envelopes.

Please note the following before requesting a recommendation letter:

  • You should only be requesting a letter from a recommender who is very familiar with your class work and/or writing and research capacities. Typically that means that you have taken more than a single course with the recommender or have worked closely with that recommender in some capacity.
  • Except under unordinary circumstances, a strong letter of support can only be provided for you if you have a combined average of a B for all courses that you have taken with the recommender. If you come in below this average in those courses, you should probably consider requesting a recommendation from another professor. A letter of recommendation will not be provided for any student who has violated the Academic Behavior Code in classes taken with the recommender.
  • Your recommendation forms should be clean, unfolded, and otherwise unmarred. The forms should be filled out completely in typeface or neat, block print, and should be signed where required. Be sure to check and sign the privacy waiver on the form, if appropriate. Do not staple any of the forms. Be sure to check the proper spelling of the name and title of the recommender on all forms, as necessary.
  • A copy of your recommendation letter will not customarily be available to you. If the letter is not to be mailed directly to the requesting institution, it will be provided to you in an envelope with the recommender’s signature across the seal to ensure the letter’s confidentiality. Requesting institutions expect such protocol when receiving letters of recommendation as part of an application package submitted directly by an applying student.

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