A Letter of Recommendation (LOR) or Reference Letter is one of the most important documents that help the admission committee to get an idea about the student applying to the engineering program. A LOR must be written with a keen observation stating the important skills and interests of the student. A top-ranking chemical engineering university receives thousands of sample LOR for MS in chemical engineering in a day. Thus, it is extremely necessary that the LOR provided by the student stands out from the rest to ensure a higher chance of getting into the desired university.
Writing a LOR means stating and corroborating a student’s hard and soft skills. The letter should mention facets like the student’s character, attitude, work ethic, and achievements they have in the field of engineering while studying in the institution or while working at a particular organisation.
But how to write one? What are the LOR types? Does every chemical engineering university has a different LOR requirement?
Let’s check information on these and the other crucial facets of a sample LOR for MS in chemical engineering.
Types of LORs for MS in Chemical Engineering
While applying for a chemical engineering course or program, a student is generally asked for two or three sample LOR for MS in chemical engineering, usually written by the teachers of the previous or present institution and/or by the supervisor of the organisation the student is working in. Additionally, the LORs are classified under two categories:
1. Academic LOR
An Academic LOR is a letter of recommendation written by one of the faculty members of the student’s current or previous educational organisation. In the case of the student applying for an undergraduate program in chemical engineering, the LOR should be written by one of the teachers of the school and in the case of a Master’s or PhD, the LOR should be written by one of the professors of the college from where the student was pursuing his degree.
The letter of recommendation from the faculty requires the professor to highlight the student’s attitude, behavior, ethical/moral values, and academic achievements as a student of the chemical engineering program.
2. Professional LOR
Most universities require a professional letter of recommendation (LOR) written by the immediate supervisor of the organisation the student is working in. Professional LORs differ from academic LORs in terms of certain content like the projects, qualities, etc. It should focus on the student’s ability to work with a team, exposure to the domain, and their leadership skills, etc. This content must be included in professional LOR for chemical engineering.
How to Write a LOR for Chemical Engineering?
There are a few points that must be kept in mind while writing a good letter of recommendation for MS in chemical engineering. A well-written LOR provides the admission committee with insights into the student’s skills and abilities which increases their chance of admission. Let’s check the pointers/steps!
The letter of recommendation for MS in chemical engineering should mention the relationship the recommender has/had with the student and in what capacity was the interaction. It is important to mention if the recommender was connected with the student as a teacher, professor, supervisor, and/or advisor and must know the student for at least six months.
It always leaves a positive impact if the observation was a direct one. It gives a clear extent of interaction and is considered better than observing through someone else or working together remotely. For example, “I have keenly observed ABC while he/she was working with Mr. XYZ where he/she showed a great spirit of leadership and/or great team spirit.” In this example, the recommender has observed the student themselves and not through someone else. Thus, has clarity on the behavior of the student.
- A LOR should not mention grades, scores, or competitive test results unless it is essential to interpret academic performance. These are already mentioned in the resume and repeating the information is not required.
- A LOR should not be more than one page written in 500-600 words and must be crisp. It should mention an accurate assessment of the student’s eligibility and qualifications. In an academic LOR, mention the achievements of the student in the school and/or college. And in professional LOR, mention their role and responsibilities and highlight the traits displayed. It is not required to discuss the job or any project at length.
- The recommender should mention the contributions that the student made in the class and/or at his workplace and what qualities they displayed. It is important to keep in mind that the contributions and the qualities mentioned by the recommender should be relevant to the engineering program.
The recommender should always mention his contact details in the LOR. It helps the admission committee in case they wish to connect for verification or a query.
LOR Requirements for Top Universities of Chemical Engineering
Following is the list of chemical engineering universities wih their LOR guidelines.
- University of California, Berkeley
- University of Cambridge
- University of Oxford
- National University of Singapore
- University of California, Berkeley (UCB), United States
UC Berkeley requires the student to submit three letter of recommendation for MS in chemical engineering electronically from professors or colleagues familiar with the work of the student. Once the student submits the form, the recommenders mentioned receives an email for the submission of the LOR electronically. However, it is not mandatory to submit LORs to UC Berkeley. It is a volunteer submission and is not important for the full consideration of the application.
- University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
University of Cambridge requires the student to submit three letters of recommendation (LORs). It is extremely important that the letters provide genuine information about the student and mention the eligibility and suitability of the students for the chemical engineering program. The first two LORs should be academic and serve as a part of the Cambridge application while the third LOR should be a personal reference.
- University of Oxford, UK
The University of Oxford requires a clear recommendation for the student. The LORs can be either academic or professional and they must mention the achievements of the student in either academic field and/or workspace. The LORs must be written by the teacher, professor, and/or the immediate supervisor. The number of LORs is not specified and thus it is advisable to check the guidelines before applying as it may vary for different seasons.
- National University of Singapore, Singapore
The National University of Singapore requires two letter of recommendation for MS in chemical engineering from the teachers of the previous school or college if the student is applying for an undergraduate program. However, if the student is applying for a Master’s program and has work experience then the student needs to have two LORs written by the employer or supervisor of the organisation where he/she was working.
Important Tips to Write a LOR for Engineering
Follow these instructions to submit and write an actionable LOR.
- Language: Use of good vocabulary and active verbs is preferred; try to avoid redundant language and too many technical terms.
- Word Limit: The LORs should not exceed the word limit of 500-600 words unless the university specified otherwise.
- Font Style and Size: For most universities, the preferred font style is Times New Roman and the font size is 12pt as it is an academic document. Few universities might accept Ariel font with font size 10pt or 12pt.
- Plagiarism: The LOR should be free of error, grammatically correct, and free from plagiarism. Proofread the files and check for errors before submission. The information mentioned by the recommender must be genuine and should be substantiated.
- Structure: The LOR should be in paragraph format. It should not contain any colorful text and should be written in plain black color. Further, all the two or three LORs should contain information about different skillsets and languages.
- Skills: The LOR must mention the hard and soft skills of the student like up-to-date technical knowledge, critical thinking, resilience, ability to communicate, leadership quality, attention to detail, etc.
To sum up, the LOR must reflect the best image of the student while providing true and honest information. We hope the guidelines will help you write the perfect LOR for your preferred university in chemical engineering program.
However, we understand that writing a sample LOR for chemical engineering programs can be challenging. But don’t worry, as Yocket is here to help you master the nuances to draft a succinct LOR for your course. You can avail of our end-to-end personalised services and connect with well-trained counsellors by subscribing to Yocket premium. They will guide you through the process making it easier than ever.