Letters of Recommendation

Letters of Recommendation describe you academically and personally. Choose people who can speak to those abilities.

You are REQUIRED to meet with the Pre-Health Advisor before starting to collect references to be placed in your file, as all of these are done online, and you must understand the differences clearly.

UAH Pre-Professional Advisory Committee (PPAC) Board Requirements:

  • Three Faculty Letters of Recommendation
    • Two letters from science (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, or Math)
  • Two Character Recommendations
    • One must be from a shadower
  • One PPAC Board Interview Evaluation

Faculty Letters

Faculty Letters speak to academic abilities, intellectual curiosity, and coursework achievements.

Get to know faculty members early, as this helps in quality of letter writing.

  • Letters are submitted online.
Character Letters

Character letters aim to give readers a sense of individual qualities, desire to enter the field, and abilities to succeed in the field.

  • Letters are submitted online.
  • At least one letter must be from someone you have shadowed in the field.
  • The second letter may be from a shadower or,
    • as long as they can still address the above qualities, it may also be from a work supervisor or a volunteer coordinator or supervisor.
Asking Your Recommender
  • Make sure they are aware of your goals well in advance.
    • You don't want the time you ask for a letter of reference to be the first time they hear of your dream to be a dentist, for example.
  • Give them plenty of time to write the letter.
  • Provide them with your resume.
    • If you need help with that, make an appointment!
  • Write them a thank you note!
  • Keep your recommenders in the loop about acceptances.


Most professional schools will require certain number of faculty or character recommendations. If you do not go through the UAH PPAC Board Process, stay updated on the number of letters needed. As always, the Office of Pre-Health Professions Advising is here to assist.