DaVinci's Man

Letters of Recommendation: Overview

Committee Letter   Cover Letter

The Cover Letter

Categories for Evaluated Students

(1) Superior Candidate:

We have great confidence that the student has the academic and personal qualifications for studying medicine and becoming a respected member of the profession.

(2) Highly Qualified Candidate:

We believe that the student will succeed in medical school and in the practice of medicine.

(3) Qualified Candidate:

We believe that the student is able to do acceptable work in medical school and in the profession.

(4) Candidate Presented for Consideration:

We think this student should be considered but are uncertain of the chances for success for reasons indicated in our letter.

(5) Special Letter:

We write a special letter when unusual circumstances make it difficult to assign an applicant to one of the above categories.

2013-2014 Supplementary Information

Because Clark University does not publish class ranks and because knowing the distribution of grades helps in evaluating the significance of each transcript, the Premedical and Predental Advisory Committee maintains the current grade distribution. The average GPA is now 3.30. The GPA in BCPM (biology, chemistry, physics, and mathematics) is 3.02. Thus, students with a heavy concentration of science courses should be raised almost one level in the following table.

Students Who Have Completed Three Years of Work
and Have Cumulative Grade Point Average

Above Percent
3.80 11.7
3.60 26.8
3.40 42.9
3.20 61.7
3.00 74.7

Evaluation Procedure

The Committee evaluates candidates on the basis of their academic record, extracurricular activities and interests, character, and suitability for medicine based on factors such as emotional stability, maturity, motivation, judgment, integrity, and social responsibility. The Committee consults instructors in premedical courses, advisors, and other faculty members designated by the students as knowing them particularly well. Students are also urged to solicit letters of recommendation for us from outside employers or supervisors having significant information to offer. Our committee letter cites the entire content of letters we receive (excluding non-relevant portions such as biographical introductions) and citations are placed into either Academic Credentials or Personal Attributes sections of our letter. Original letters are available upon request. Unless otherwise indicated, students have chosen not to see their evaluations, and both these letters and individual references on which they are based have been, and should be, kept confidential.

Our evaluation is made after comparison with the performance of recent Clark graduates in medical school. The Committee decides on the level of recommendation and the degree of enthusiasm within that level. The letter is then composed by a member of the Committee particularly knowledgeable about the candidate, reviewed by the Committee, and finally edited and signed by the Chair; significant comments and divergent opinions are included and attributed to their source. Sanctions stemming from academic or social transgressions range from a letter of warning to expulsion. Students are advised to fully disclose on their application to medical school any sanction they have received. Our letter will note any probation, suspension or dismissal from the University.