Recommendation Letters for Graduate School Admissions

Recommendation letters are required by most programs to help determine a student’s qualifications. Check with your specific program for their letter of recommendation requirements.

What Are Recommendation Letters?

Recommendation letters are written by people who know you on a personal, professional, or academic level. They are often written by professors, or co-workers in an effort to demonstrate your qualifications for acceptance into a graduate program at the University of Minnesota. These letters go beyond test scores and GPA to illustrate your experience, skills, character, work ethic, and commitment to your chosen field of study.

How Do I Request Recommendations?

Plan ahead. Your preparation for your graduate school application should include contacting potential recommendation providers. You will then provide their names and contact information as part of your application, and they will submit their recommendation via the same system.   

Waiving Your Right to View Recommendation Letters

When adding recommendation provider information to your application, you will see the following question:

"Do you wish to waive your right to examine this letter of recommendation?"

  • Yes
  • No

What does this question mean?

If you check YES: You will NOT be able to view the letters submitted on your behalf, even if you are admitted and choose to enroll at the University of Minnesota.

If you check NO: You will have the right to request your letters upon submitting your application, per the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (MGDPA). 

Why do we ask this question?

Your recommendation providers and your graduate program will see your response to this question--they both have the right to know whether the information provided in your letter could be accessible to you in the future.

How to Check the Status of your requested Recommendations

If you have not submitted your application yet, view the status of your recommendations on the “Recommendations” page in your application. If you have already submitted your application, you’ll find recommendation status on your Application Status page. In both cases, access your application here.