Faculty recommendation letters should provide an honest assessment and only include topics in which you have first-hand knowledge. Please do not use “form letters” because they put a student at a disadvantage in competition with others who have strong individualized letters. Telling the student you don’t have time to write a letter is better than using a form letter. All recommendations are held in strict confidence and are not seen by the student.
Quality grant recommendations typically describe the following:
- the student’s academic ability and potential to complete the selected research or study abroad program successfully
- the student’s level of commitment to and progress in his or her honors program
- the specific reasons why the Honors College should or should not award this student over other students
- any hesitations you have regarding the student and/or the selected program
- any additional comments you would like to make that weren’t already covered in the other points
If you are recommending a student for study abroad:
Please address the following issues, as well:
- the fit of the selected academic institution and program (including coursework proposed) to the student’s field of study and/or professional goals
- if the course instruction is not in English, the student’s ability and background to complete coursework in the language of instruction successfully
If you are recommending a student for a research travel grant:
Please be sure to include a narrative explaining the importance of the proposed travel to the student's academic, research and professional goals.
Thank you for writing recommendations for your honors students!