Another example of: What Were They Thinking? (when they write reference letters for students applying to graduate school; 'they' being professors at the applicants' undergraduate institutions). Why mention a student's religion and degree of religious fervor in an application for a graduate program? It has no bearing on whether a student is accepted to the graduate program or not, and makes us question the judgment of the letter-writer because it suggests they don't know how to evaluate a student's potential for graduate studies.
It's clear I need to take a break from reading these files.
Students should not panic about the quirks of their letter-writers. There is a lot of information in each application packet, including 3 letters of reference. Admission is competitive, but no one with an otherwise strong application is going to be rejected because one letter-writer doesn't know how to write a reference letter. We also realize that students sometimes have only a few options of faculty who know them well enough to write a letter.
9 months ago