Use the criteria below when deciding who to ask for recommendations. If you answer “no” to many of the questions below, consider asking someone else for a recommendation.
- Did they teach you recently?
- Did they teach you in a core academic subject?
- Did you do well in their class, or improve dramatically?
- Did they agree to write the letter without hesitation?
- Do they know you outside of the classroom?
- Do they have time to finish a letter before the deadline?
Be sure to give your recommenders plenty of time to complete their recommendations. We recommend that you give your recommenders at least three weeks, but one month or more is even better.
You should also provide your recommenders with as much information about you as possible in order for them to paint a complete and accurate picture of you and your achievements. You should provide a transcript, resume/activities list, a list of colleges you are applying to or ranking, the latest draft of your personal statement, and a list of recommendation deadlines. If you don't have all of these things ready in time, we still recommend you ask your recommenders with at least three weeks notice. You will register your recommenders in the QuestBridge application in order for them to fill out the online recommendation form.
See the Recommendations section of our Student Resource Center for more information and additional tips for recommendations.