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Letters of Rec may be in a similar field?

gurt567gurt567 Registered User Posts: 176 Junior Member
I participated in the PLTW biomedical line of classes and finished all the way through the capstone. This teacher knows me for 3 consecutive years and he'll write me an incredible letter. I've already asked him and he's agreed.

The problem is, my AP Chemistry teacher has also said that he'll write me a letter of Rec and I've known him for 1 year (Honors Chem) and plan on taking AP Chem next year.

I'm wondering if I can request a letter from both of these teachers? These two know me the best by far and will write the best letters but I'm not sure if colleges will accept them. Is there a way I can ask my PLTW teacher to position himself in a way that isn't science or something? I'm not sure what to do here and any help is appreciated.

Replies to: Letters of Rec may be in a similar field?

  • bjkmombjkmom Registered User Posts: 7,805 Senior Member
    The issue I have is that they'll both probably speak to similar parts of your personality-- your science background, your ability to master the same type of material, and so on.

    I think it would make for a stronger app to have a second letter from someone who can address a different strength-- you ability to work on projects, your ability for creative thought, or something along those lines.
  • gurt567gurt567 Registered User Posts: 176 Junior Member
    @bjkmom
    yeah I see what you're saying and I assume that's what most college AO's believe (that's why they require the 2 separate field thing in the first place).

    I have a math teacher that will write me a good rec too if things don't go as planned. Not sure what to do though cause that chem teacher told me couple months back that they'll write me a letter..
  • MA2012MA2012 Registered User Posts: 1,226 Senior Member
    Generally the suggestion is to get one STEM teacher and one Humanities teacher to write you a recommendation letter. It sounds like these are all STEM teachers, so you should think about a Humanities teacher who could write one. Are you a rising senior? Many schools suggest you talk to teachers about writing letters at the end of Junior year.
  • gurt567gurt567 Registered User Posts: 176 Junior Member
    @MA2012
    Yes, I'm a rising senior. I wasn't aware that you should ask that early. Most online sites recommend 1-2 months before applications are due.

    I understand that the chem and pltw are both STEM and my back up Math is too but colleges are fine with that. They just ask for one of the core subjects and BSMD actually recommends it be in stem.

    But my initial question still stands: Is it feasible for chem and PLTW recs?
  • MA2012MA2012 Registered User Posts: 1,226 Senior Member
    edited July 2018
    I am not familiar with PLTW so can’t comment specifically. College counselors at my kids high schools say one STEM and one humanities, so that’s what they did/will do.

    When to ask for recommendations may vary by school. Most teachers with a lot of college bound students appreciate a heads up in the spring so they can balance their load, and give students time to ask someone else if they have a limit of students. Did you have any college sessions during junior year? Many schools have sessions with college/guidance counselors during spring semester and address things like when to ask for recommendations and other practical timeline questions.
  • college_querycollege_query Registered User Posts: 4,495 Senior Member
    My S had a very difficult time getting Letters of Rec in the recommended STEM and Humanities categories due to teacher turnover and other similar issues and restrictions. Besides one academic subject, he ended up getting a letter from his music teacher. He was not a music major, but it was a major EC all through HS, college, and even now in grad school. He had this teacher for 6 year-long classes during high school and he felt the teacher knew him best.

    My S was admitted ED to a very selective LAC, so it worked out okay for him.
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