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Letter of recommendation(s) from an associate professor?

BerserkeleyBerserkeley Alum Member

Is it okay to received a LOR from an associate professor who knows me well? Or is it always better to have one from stellar professors like a former secretary of labor or nobel laureates?

How about summer school professors?


  • Carol9566Carol9566 Monthly Member
    34 karma

    I would strongly caution against getting a LOR from someone just off of their title alone. You want someone who can attest to your abilities ideally as a student, but could also be as an employee if you’ve been in the workforce for a while. Almost all schools say the same: TA’s, professors, direct supervisors are the best bet. Fancy titles that weren’t your direct boss usually have a preprinted LOR format that cant give much detail and give crappy LORs. Your summer school professor, or even better a professor who’s class you took multiple times, and did well in is a great bet! And keep in contact after because you never know when you’ll need to network. Any specific questions about your situation, most schools usually have q&a seminars.

  • canihazJDcanihazJD Alum Member Sage
    8139 karma

    I'd add that if at all possible get a copy of the letter so you can gauge strength. You don't want to submit a mediocre or redundant letter. It's also not uncommon for a professor to inadvertently recommend you in a way that is actually detrimental to your app. Ask for more than you need and use the best ones.

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