Letters of Recommendation
Letters of Recommendation (LORs) are required from three different sources. These are three suggested sources but you can use any combination you wish:
- An optometrist who can state through documented experience that you know what the profession of optometry entails and possibly a statement about your suitability to be a healthcare provider, specifically a doctor.
- A professor with whom you have done personal work (such as assisted on a specific project or served as a TA or reader), or with whom you took a course.
- An employer or extracurricular activity advisor who can comment about your maturity, diligence, and conscientiousness.
Do not send LORs from coworkers, someone you have supervised, relatives, or personal and family friends. These are deemed inappropriate and can be detrimental to the review of your application.
How and Where Do I Send My LORs?
Applicants should not send LORs directly to OptomCAS; all LORs need to come directly from the Recommender to OptomCAS. Recommenders can submit electronic LORs (preferred method) or paper references to OptomCAS.
The applicant will provide the names, addresses and email addresses of a maximum of four (4) people providing LORs on the OptomCAS application. OptomCAS will send an evaluation to the recommender to be completed and returned.
If your Recommender chooses to submit an electronic LOR, enter only their e-mail address and leave the mailing address fields blank.
If your Recommender chooses to submit a paper LOR, complete the mailing address fields and leave the e-mail address blank. For paper-format LORs, you will need to print the appropriate forms and send these to your Recommender(s) to complete. These forms will be made available and printable if you select the paper format option and will not be made available until your application is opened.
What is the Format of the LOR?
The LOR requires completion of two parts: a rating of attributes (Part I) and a letter (Part II). The narrative can be typed directly into the space provided or can be cut and pasted from a word processor. Because some word processor characters will not correctly translate into text, Recommenders are strongly encouraged to compose their letter in a text-only word processor (e.g., Notepad, not Word), review the letter for errors, then cut and paste the final version into the text box. OptomCAS is currently NOT set up to receive PDF formatted LORs.
Letters of Recommendation are critical to the review of your application. Before you enter your LOR information in the section of your OptomCAS application, it is suggested you contact the individuals to confirm that they will author your LOR and to find out which format they would prefer (electronic or paper). If they agree to submit your LOR, please confirm their preferred contact e-mail address.
What You Should Know?
- Designate your recommenders early in the application process. We strongly encourage you to enter your LOR information first to expedite their receipt of the Recommendation Request Form.
- Check the status of your Recommenders responses through the Status Section on the main page of the application. Those who use the electronic LOR format will automatically receive a duplicate request one time per month until they either submit the requested recommendation or deny the request.
- It is not necessary to wait until your recommenders have responded to submit your application through OptomCAS.