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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
1.0
4.0
SAT: 720 math
200
800
| 800 verbal
200
800

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Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

How to ensure quality college recommendation letters?

I'm starting to think about teacher recommendations for college apps, and kinda stressed about how to ensure they're good. Any tips on avoiding common pitfalls when asking for and receiving recommendations?

7 months ago

Absolutely, getting a strong recommendation letter can definitely be a bit nerve-wracking, but with the right approach, it's totally doable!

First off, it's key to choose teachers who know you well and can speak to your strengths in a personal way. These should typically be teachers in whose classes you've excelled or participated actively. Once you've made your choices, ask them early—ideally before the end of junior year, giving them ample time over the summer to write your letter.

When you approach them, do so respectfully, and provide them with a 'brag sheet' where you highlight your academic milestones, extracurricular achievements, and personal interests to help them write a more detailed and tailored letter. It's also helpful to discuss with them not just your achievements, but also your growth and character. If there's a particular instance or project where you demonstrated critical thinking or leadership, mention it during your conversation.

And remember, after they agree to write the recommendation, check in with them closer to the deadline to gently remind them, and don't forget to write a thank you note to show your appreciation for their time and effort. That kind of thoughtfulness is always appreciated!

7 months ago

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