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Does it look bad if a reference doesn't come through??

Posted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:23 pm
by AriAstronomer
Hey everyone,
So a prof who I did a bit of research with in second year and have taken numerous classes with went back to UToronto (i.e. left my university) this year, but agreed to write me a reference letter still for my universities. I put his name down for all the online applications and such, but for whatever reason he hasnt submitted anything yet, and has been unreachable by phone or email. I do already have 3 reference letters, he would be a fourth, but an important fourth since I did research with him and did well in a lot of his classes....

What can I do besides keep trying? I don't think there's a way to remove him as a reference if I've already submitted the application - I can simply view whether or not he's submitted the letter. It's not dire straights yet but getting there. Will admission committees blame me if it shows that I have 3 or 4 references submitted, or as long as I have the minimum requirements they wouldnt penalize me?


Re: Does it look bad if a reference doesn't come through??

Posted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 8:45 pm
by admissionprof
If they only require 3, but you listed 4, then the secretary could hold the application because it isn't complete, so you should e-mail the admissions people and tell them it isn't coming (and why). If they require 4, you need a substitute.

But you need to find out what's going on first. Not answering phones/email? Maybe he/she is sick (or dead). Don't call his office, call the department secretary and find out.