Do You Need a LOR?
Some four year universities require that you submit a letter of recommendation with your application – however, not all of them do. If you are a current senior in the middle of the application process, it is extremely important that you spend some time organizing your applications. You should know what is required for each application, to avoid doing any unnecessary work! We recommend creating an Excel Document that organizes the college name, application website, application deadline, and application requirements (Letters of Rec, Personal Statement, Supplemental Writing Prompts, Interview) in one place.
As for the LOR, you should only begin the process of asking for a LOR if you are applying for a school that requires one. We have listed three major university systems below, along with their LOR requirements:
UC System: Does NOT require a letter or rec. (Exception: UC Berkeley may ask you for a letter AFTER you submit your application, and they have their own format – so you do NOT need to pre-emptively ask for a letter.)
CSU System: Does NOT require a letter of rec.
Private Universities or Out of State Public Universities: It depends on the school. Please refer to the application to see if a LOR is required. Most schools that use the Common Application (www.commonapp.org) will require a letter of rec.
If you determine that you DO need to ask for a letter of rec, the first step is to complete your Brag Sheet, which you can find here: https://www.miracostahigh.org/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=349757&type=d&pREC_ID=759624