Letters of Recommendation Made Easier

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The Common Letter of Recommendation (LOR) simplifies the letter of recommendation process. 

GMAC has collaborated with a group of leading business schools to help develop a new set of “common” questions, with the goal of making the process of writing letters of recommendation easier for business applications.

The goal of the Common Letter of Recommendation (LOR) is to save your letter writer valuable time by providing a single, common set of questions. This approach allows letter writers to use the same responses for multiple letter submissions, alleviating the need to answer dozens of additional questions for different schools.

Please note that the questions are part of each participating school’s existing recommendation system.

The Common LOR form has 3 sections:

Section 1: Personal information about the letter writer

Section 2: Leadership assessment grid of candidate

Your letter writer will be asked to assess you on 16 character traits and competencies that contribute to successful leadership. The competencies and character traits are grouped into five categories:

  • Achievement
  • Influence
  • People
  • Personal qualities
  • Cognitive abilities

Section 3: Recommendation questions

Some schools only require your letter writer to complete section three for your letter of recommendation, which consists of the following questions:

  • Please provide a brief description of your interaction with the applicant and, if applicable, the applicant’s role in your organization. (Recommended word count: 50 words)
  • How does the performance of the applicant compare to that of other well-qualified individuals in similar roles? (e.g., what are the applicant’s principal strengths?) (Recommended word count: 500 words)
  • Describe the most important piece of constructive feedback you have given the applicant. Please detail the circumstances and the applicant’s response. (Recommended word count: 500 words)
  • Is there anything else we should know? (Optional)

General instructions for completing and submitting the Common LOR

If you are applying to one the participant schools, your letter writer can use the Common LOR template (this may be sent to them in an email from the school) and follow the steps below:

  • Download the common LOR template PDF and save it on a computer
  • Complete the template offline and save a final version of the file. To ensure that entered form data isn’t accidentally lost, avoid completing the template online within browsers.
  • Access the invitation email or official form from school and follow the school’s instructions for submitting the recommendation.
    • For schools that offer the ability to complete recommendations online through a secure website:
      • Access the email with login information from the school
      • Use the completed Common LOR template to copy and paste responses to the school’s online recommendation system
      • Complete and submit the recommendation
    • For schools that accept email or paper submissions of the Common LOR:
      • Access the official LOR form from the school
      • Use the completed Common LOR template to copy and paste responses to the official form
      • Email or mail completed recommendation to the school

If you or your letter writer needs the form in a different language, please click the appropriate link below. Note that it should still be filled out in English.

Common Letter of Recommendation Template: Simplified Chinese (Word)
Common Letter of Recommendation Template: French (Word)
Common Letter of Recommendation Template: German (Word)
Common Letter of Recommendation Template: Korean (Word)
Common Letter of Recommendation Template: Spanish (Word)

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