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Letters of Recommendation

General Information

  • Three references are required; five are allowed.
  • Locate and contact your recommenders at least a month in advance of the application deadline to find out if they are willing to provide an electronic reference and to allow adequate time for them to respond.
  • As soon as you enter a recommender's contact information electronically, he or she will receive an email request.
  • Types of references Required:
    • One (preferably two) reference(s) from a professor(s) or equivalent academic source who knows your work well.
    • One (or more) letter(s) that speaks to your research potential is especially helpful.
    • Letters from recommenders holding a doctorate (or a non-us equivalent) carry much more weight than letters without such credentials. A letter from a public health professional with a master's degree might serve as a fourth reference.
    • Letters from professors or supervisors in fields unrelated to public health, health sciences, mathematics or quantitative social sciences carry significantly less weight.
    • Letters from colleagues, as opposed to supervisors, carry very little weight.
    • Do not send letters from relatives, non-professional sources, and other students.
  • You are allowed to change a reference to/from electronic upload to postal mail, if requested by the recommender, by deleting the recommender and re-adding him/her with the correct delivery method.
  • It is the applicant's responsibility to make sure references are submitted by December 15. The application submission deadline is December 1.

Specialized Reference Required for UW Postdoc Fellows

  • A UW postdoc fellow (or potential fellow) must provide a reference from his/her fellowship director and research or lab mentor certifying that the applicant will be allowed release time to attend class on a regular basis. This requires flexible clinic/lab schedules because core course times vary depending on the quarter. The first year requires class attendance 5 days/week.

Send your Recommenders the Following Information:

  • Also send them a scanned copy of your transcripts and your electronic resume or CV.

    For Recommenders of Applicants to the Epidemiology Department, University of Washington:

  • Each recommender will receive a system-generated email request to submit an on-line reference (much preferred to paper or email) so he or she should make sure that the request is not discarded as spam.
  • Recommenders should comment in detail about the accomplishments, training and experience that qualify the applicant for a degree and career in epidemiology and public health. Evaluation of the applicant's health science research experience is especially helpful, if applicable.
  • Clinical residency or fellowship references are inadequate, as are references that are only general in nature.
  • The Receipt Deadline for references is December 15.
  • A recommender may receive a system-generated email that says the deadline is December 1. The Graduate School application system is programmed that way, so the Epidemiology Department cannot correct it.
  • Late references may prevent consideration or reduce admission chances for the applicant.
  • If the recommender insists on using postal mail, the mailing and express courier address is below:

    Epidemiology Program Office, UWBox 357236
    F263 Health Sciences Building
    1959 NE Pacific Street
    University of Washington
    Seattle, WA 98195-7236
    Phone: 206-543-6302 or 685-1762
    Email: epiapply@uw.edu

  • Application Submission Instructions

      This page was last updated on November 20, 2013