Asking for LOR from REU supervisors?

<p>Hey guys,</p>

<p>I've just finished an REU where I've really given it my all and think that I've demonstrated capability to do independent research. I work for a postdoc under the supervision of a professor. </p>

<p>I'd like to ask them for LORs, but I'm not sure which to ask. The postdoc has seen my "I want this project and I will rip telephone directories with my teeth" motivation, and he's seen me work hard, troubleshoot, and problem solve. The professor and I have not had such interaction, but he's the professor. </p>

<p>In your opinion, which should I ask for LORs? I've set up appointments with both of them to "talk about grad school" and I figure I will ask them then. An option is to sit down with both the postdoc and the prof and have the postdoc tell the prof his experiences with me. </p>

<p>If I ask for two LORs, will it be weird that I have 2 from an REU and one (strong) one from my home institution? Or would it be better to have a strong one from my home institution, a strong one from my REU, and a weaker one from my home institution from profs I've only taken classes with?</p>

<p>Thanks for your input.</p>

<p>I would guess it's best to have one letter from the professor.</p>

<p>I applied with one letter from a REU advisor, and it did not seem to hurt anything. I think in general that it would be better to have each advisor representing a different experience (i.e. different labs, classes, or projects), but if you are going to duplicate then I would say it is best to double dip from a research program.</p>

<p>In other words, go for it.</p>

<p>I don't think the issue would be having two letters from the REU, I think the issue would be having a letter from a post-doc.</p>

<p>Postdoc recommendation letters will have little - if any - clout.</p>

<p>Get one letter from the PI - have the postdoc draft some specifics/glowing words as suggestions for the PI (the PI will likely appreciate the input from the postdoc as it makes it easier for him/her to write a useful letter). See if the postdoc suggests this scenario. I would get letters from other sources as they could corroborate a positive letter from the lab (In my opinion, it seems more believable/stronger if people from different sources are saying good things about you)</p>