Letters of Evaluation

Georgia Tech Letters of Evaluation Service

The Georgia Tech Letters of Evaluation (LOE) service is a letter packet compilation service for pre-health students and alumni. Pre-health advisors do not write letters of evaluation or committee letters. Instead, evaluators send their letters to Pre-Health Advising, and we disseminate the letters as a packet to health professional schools or application services (i.e. AMCAS, AACOMAS, AADSAS, TMDSAS, and/or AACPMAS) once an applicant makes a formal upload request. 

AdviseStream LOE management tool is now ready to use at http://gatech.advisestream.com. At this time only students and alumni that are planning to apply this summer for the 2019 cycle should proceed to login and start the letter of evaluation (LOE) process.  Please review this document (Adobe PDF file) before you reach out to us with questions. 

The AdviseStream advising tool provides a portal where we will manage LOEs and the creation of the students’ letter packets.  This portal allows students to designate letter writers who will upload letters directly to an online interface.  Students may use the interface to monitor their letters and request upload to application services (AMCAS, AACOMAS, ADSAS, etc.). NEW INFO: SEE UPLOAD REQUEST STEPS BELOW

Again, remember that we are launching only the LOE portion of the software right now, so please limit your correspondence to questions about that process. Direct questions to our LOE coordinator at pre-health@provost.gatech.edu.

Alumni will need to submit this form here to be added to AdviseStream.

To ensure that we can process all letters for a timely review by admissions committees, we ask that letter writers adhere to our usual June 1 deadline.


IMPORTANT DATES AND DEADLINES:

December 18             “Preparing to Apply” Webinar (get tips from Francisco Castelan in the comfort of your own home!)

March 6                      Georgia Tech Pre-Health Advising begins accepting LOEs through the AdviseStream interface

May 1                          Deadline for students to complete the “Intent to Apply” on AdviseStream (details coming in spring)

June 1                         Deadline for LOEs submitted to GT Pre-Health Advising via AdviseStream

June 2                         Students may begin requesting uploads of completed letter packets through AdviseStream

December 1, 2018     Deadline for upload requests (except for Post-Bacc and Caribbean schools)


Below are a few reminders that ALL CURRENT APPLICANTS SHOULD REVIEW:

  • Begin identifying your letter writers and gather information to share with them.  See the attached tips for students about how to approach your letter writers.  You may want to share these AAMC letter writer guidelines with them, too.  Be sure to give letter writers as much time as possible, ideally 6-8 weeks, to prepare their letters.  
  • Familiarize yourself with the application process. The AAMC web site is a treasure trove of valuable information related to the MCAT and the entire path to medical school.  Other professional organizations also have great resources for future dentists, pharmacists, physical therapists, and physician assistants
  • Register for the MCAT.  You should plan to take the MCAT no later than May to complete your application in the month of June.  Want to take your MCAT later than June?  Schedule an appointment with your pre-health advisor to discuss the pros and cons of delaying this critical component of your application.  If you have not yet registered for the MCAT, be sure to look into the Fee Assistance Program, which can save you a bundle on the test and related application expenses.
  • You must indicate your “Intent to Apply” on AdviseStream by May 1.  Students who do not meet this deadline will be ineligible for the Georgia Tech Letter of Evaluation (LOE) service.
  • It is in your best interest to use the Georgia Tech LOE service.  We provide a cover document that attests to the legitimacy of your letters, explains the rigor at Georgia Tech, and offers to clarify elements of your application if necessary.  Professional schools may question a decision to bypass our LOE service.
  • Evaluators’ letters are due to Pre-Health Advising (through AdviseStream) by June 1.  Please remind your letter-writers that this is a firm deadline.
  • Please search for your letter-writer in the AdviseStream interface before you “add an evaluator.”  AdviseStream cannot accept multiple email addresses for a single evaluator, so you will slow the process if you try to enter new information for an existing evaluator.
  • Direct all questions about the LOE service to our LOE Coordinator, Ms. Monique Morris at pre-health@provost.gatech.edu.  Ms. Morris is the AdviseStream expert, and she communicates directly with AdviseStream to resolve technical issues.  Reaching out to pre-health advisors may delay or complicate this process.
  • The AMCAS application portal will open Wednesday, 2 May. 
  • The AACOMAS application portal will open Thursday, 3 May.
  • The AADSAS application portal will open Tuesday, 15 May.
  • Students should submit their best applications during the month of June.  Because professional schools have rolling admissions, applications submitted early in the process fare better than those submitted later.  If you cannot complete your application, including standardized testing, during the month of June, please schedule an appointment with a pre-health advisor to determine your best course of action.
  • Schedule an appointment, drop by, or give us a call!  Your pre-health advisors are available to help you.  The best way to get information from us is in person.  We find that even apparently simply questions require a lot of back-and-forth discussion that is more easily accomplished in speech.  If you cannot find an appointment on GradesFirst during this busy season, plan to come to drop-in hours, MWF 8:30-9:30 and TR 3:30-4:30.  We will accommodate phone call drop-ins, too.  Just shoot us an email the day before with the number to call.

UPLOAD REQUEST STEPS

You can request an upload request starting on June 2, 2018

Before beginning the Upload Request process on AdviseStream, the following steps must be completed:

  • Transcripts sent to the application services (AMCAS, AACOMAS< AADSAS, etc.)
  • All letters to be included in your Letter Packet must be  marked as “arrived/submitted” on AdviseStream
  • Submitted application to application service
    • Note: A PDF copy of your submitted application will be required on AdviseStream and the Letter Request Form (from AMCAS). Save a copy of each on your desktop to be able to complete the upload process.

Proceed with these instructions


Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are there instructions that I can send to my recommenders that explains what they need to do to submit their letters?

A: When you request a letter through AdviseStream, the system auto-generates an email to recommenders with specific instructions, and a PDF that explains the interface. 

Q: I logged into AdviseStream and added access to pre-health. I still do not see the intent to apply option.

A: Expect a lag time before that access appears on your dashboard.If after 24 hours, the intent to apply does not show up on your profile, please contact us at pre-health@provost.gatech.edu

Q: I sent off request for a recommendation letter but it was declined because the email address was not one from an institution. What does this mean?

A: Since we have to comply with the waiver of rights of letters. Our office reviews external LOE writers to confirm the email corresponds to the professional letter writer.  Please provide a workplace email versus a Gmail or yahoo account for a recommender as this will keep the verification process more expedient.

Q: Does the LOE office support the ACCOMAS application service for letter packets?

A: We do support the DO application (AACOMAS) by uploading your packet to the centralized application.

Q: I put in an email of a doctor I shadowed and AdviseStream says the email address needs to be verified by Georgia Tech before my letter writer can submit their recommendation. What does that mean?

A: We verify that all letters are authentic and that they come from the person that you have listed. If an official work email for the individual is used, then they tend to get approved quicker. It all depends on how quickly they correspond to our inquiry (if it is needed).

Q: I tried to use the AdviseStream login with my gatech account, but it stated that I have to create an AdviseStream account. To create an account, the site says I need a token given by an advisor. Do I have to receive a token to make the account?

A: No you do not need a token to create an account. You will need to submit this form to set up your AdviseStream account. You will be notified via email directly from AdviseStream to complete your acct. Please expect up to 5 business days for your account to be activated.

Q: I already had multiple letters submitted before graduation, but one letter writer may not update their letter, after I confirm this to be true do I need to tell you so that the updated letters are submitted as if they are new?

A: Each letter writer will be given an opportunity to either upload a new letter (if you have pursued/requested an updated letter) or given the option to decline uploading a letter if you are planning to use the old letter. It is your responsibility to notify the LOE coordinator at (pre-helath@provost.gatech.edu) which letters you expect to be updated

Q: If I am applying to veterinary schools through VMCAS, which is not supported by AdviseStream, do I still need to request LOE through AdviseStream or I just do it through VMCAS?

A: VMCAS capabilities do not match our letter packet system and will require students enter their letter writers and have them submit letters as individual letters.

Q: One evaluator has his institution email forwarded to his gmail account, but he cannot send anything from his institution email account. Would that still work? The request would be sent through the institution account. I just would like to ensure that he does not need to be able to send from the institution account.

A: Once we have verified the work email that should not impact the ability of your LOE writer to submit their letter. A link is sent to their work email and if that is forwarded, then they should have access to the link.

Q: Why have my letter writers not been approved on AdviseStream?

A: If you have not requested the letter from your letter writer, your recommender does not get moved “to be reviewed” in AdviseStream.

Q:  Do I need to complete my profile to reflect all relevant information or is that not something that is important since my medical school applications will contain all of education, biographical background etc? 

A: At this time your AdviseStream profile will allow you to track your activities but is not required as a part of your collection of Letters of Recommendation (for applicants of the 2019 cycle).

Q:  In the previous system of submitting letters, I had to also give each letter writer an LOE form to complete and sign as well as I sign to waiver my right to look at the letter- is that now built into the system? 

A:  LOE forms are no longer needed, FERPA waivers and evaluator ratings are now built into AdviseStream

Q: Is the sending of helpful materials a tool that only becomes available once I actually request a letter of evaluation?

A: Yes, once you have submitted an evaluator request and it has been verified (approved) by our office, the evaluator will received an email notification which will include evaluator instruction and guidelines.

Q: If my professors upload Letter of recommendations to AdviseStream, will they be uploaded to the AADSAS application on June 1 or does it take longer to process?

A: Students can begin requesting a letter packet upload June 2.  We will beginning processing requests then, in the order in which they were received.

Q: Do I have to ask my professors to print them on letterhead, scan them, and sign them or does AdviseStream take care of the formatting? 

 A: Letters should be dated, signed, and presented on letterhead.  AdviseStream will remind letter-writers of these details, but the letter-writers should plan to submit a PDF that should have already included these items in their letter.

Q: If I have evaluators that are not through Georgia Tech, can they upload to AdviseStream after June 1 if I don't plan to submit my application until June 8?

A: All letter-writers must submit letters through AdviseStream by June 1.  You can add non-GT letter-writers to the AdviseStream system (see directions in the previous emails), but please remember to use an institutional email address for the letter-writer, so the verification process will not be delayed.

Q: Do I route my transcript through AdviseStream?

A:  No, order your official transcript directly from the Registrar's Office, and have it sent to your application service, using the appropriate "transcript request form" if necessary.


FERPA

When handling student records,  GT Pre-health Advising adheres to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). More information can be found here: http://www.catalog.gatech.edu/policies/ferpa/.