International Students - Useful Tips - Letters - Example1

Letters of Recommendation


An example of a well thought out letter of recommendation


1st January 2013


Re: Recommendation of Jane Smith to the Aristotle Scholarship Programme.

I have known Ms Smith for the past three years in my capacity as Lecturer-in-Charge of Undergraduate Inorganic Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Socrates (UoS).

From the very commencement of her studies here, she has displayed all the signs that she is destined to pursue a promising academic career, especially in the area of inorganic chemistry.

Despite only recently earning an honours degree in Chemistry (B.Sc. Hons.), she is already an accomplished and emotionally mature young woman who constantly displays strong intellectual as well as personal integrity.

She has already produced two academic articles, one of which has been accepted for publication in an accredited international journal. In this regard, considering the fact that she comes from an extremely financially disadvantaged background and has had to put herself through her undergraduate years of study  by simultaneously holding down an evening job, her achievements are a wonderful example of what can be accomplished with hard work, sell-discipline and focused dedication

Ms Smith was awarded the UoS Rector’s medal for Science at the most recent graduation Ceremony (November 2012) for scoring the highest marks of any undergraduate science student in her four years of study. In this context, she achieved an impressive 97% average for all her science subjects in the period under review (i.e.2009 – 2012).

In our tutorial sessions, her presentations involving practical chemistry (especially in the area of silver-based chemistry) were often insightful and even applauded by her fellow students. Indeed, her unassuming erudition is highly regarded and she has become somewhat more than a mere student and has already proven to be a most valuable (albeit informal) addition to the teaching staff.

Since that time, Ms Smith has finished writing an excellent proposal for research towards a M.Sc. in Chemistry specifically in the field of soluble in organic salts which she hopes to register at a suitable university abroad – preferably the United States of America. It is in this regard that she is earnestly applying to the Aristotle Scholarship Programme for financial support to realise her dreams of taking up a positron in the near future as a university lecturer.

Personally, I find Ms Jane Smith to be an honest, intelligent, articulate person, who is clearly self-motivated and also demonstrates leadership qualities that are admired by her peers and lecturers alike.

One possible perceived weakness concerns the candidate’s age. As you will see from her curriculum vitae, Ms Smith has only just turned seventeen - an age when most students first enter into a university yet alone undertake postgraduate study. Regardless, her obvious high Intelligence Quotient aside, she has already proven to have a high emotional quotient as well and will continue to prove to be a diligent stunt and researcher regardless of any perceptions that might exist concerning her immature appearance.

I strongly recommend her to be an Aristotle Scholarship Programme Grant recipient, and I am happy to elaborate on any details if so required.



Andrew N. Other (Dr)


Lecturer: Chemistry
Department of Chemistry
Faculty of Science
University of Socrates