Instructions for Students Seeking Letters of Recommendation


I am happy to write letters of recommendation for students who have done well in one or more of my classes. Before contacting me for a letter, please make sure your request meets the following criteria:

  • You have taken at least one class with me.
  • You have earned at least an A- in the course and/or on major assignments.
  • You submit your request for a letter at least three weeks  before the published deadline, if the letter can be submitted electronically (via email or an application site), or at least four weeks before the published deadline, if the letter must be mailed in hard copy.
  • You waive your right to access the letter.
  • RECOMMENDED. You have met with me at least once  outside of class (that is, during office hours). 


You should submit your request for a letter by email with the following items/information:

  • the published deadline for the letter
  • instructions on how to submit the letter
  • an up-to-date C.V./resume
  • copies of graded work from my course
  • a nearly finalized draft of the personal statement/statement of purpose/cover letter you plan to submit with your application
  • a paragraph explaining (1) why you're applying to the program/job; and (2) how the work you did in my course relates to the program/job
  • IF YOU HAVE MORE THAN ONE LETTER REQUEST, please submit a cover sheet with itemized instructions 


Submit all requests to: claire [dot] bourne [at] psu [dot] edu.