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Psychiatry Letter of Recommendation – Writing Guide 2023

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If you want to specialize your career in clinical psychiatry, joining a psychiatry residency program is the best decision to take this year. Before it is too late and institutes close their application deadline, apply for your program at the best institute in 2023. Remember that besides your application form and statement of purpose, you will need to include a powerful psychiatry letter of recommendation in the application to make your profile sound great. In this blog, we will help you write LOR for psychiatry residency programs. This blog covers topics such as: 

  • What is psychiatry LOR?
  • How to write it? 
  • Psychiatry residency letter of recommendation samples

What Is a Psychiatry Letter of Recommendation?

A psychiatry letter of recommendation is a type of LOR that is written to recommend a candidate to a psychiatry residency program. The letter is typically written by a faculty, a mentor, or a colleague who knows the candidate in a clinical or academic setting.

Why Is Psychiatry LOR Important?

It is important to include a strong LOR in your psychiatry residency program application for the following reasons. 

  • It talks about the moral, ethical and personal values of the candidate.
  • It explains why the candidate deserves admission to the specific psychiatric residency program.
  • It elaborates on the academic excellence of the candidate with verifiable examples.
  • It shows how the candidate is distinguished from other applicants.
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Questions to Brainstorm Before Writing Psychiatry LOR

Before writing your letter of recommendation for psychiatry residency, take a few minutes to answer the following questions. It will not only help you have better clarity about the LOR but also will make your writing much easier and less confusing. 

Why would you recommend the candidate for the psychiatry residency program? 

Write about the specific qualities, strengths, exposure, or inquisitiveness shown by the candidate during your association with him which made you think that he is apt for doing a psychiatry residency program. 

How does the candidate manage his/her time for various academic responsibilities such as research, project, clinical exposure etc? 

Write about the various responsibilities the candidates managed under your supervision. Emphasize the candidate’s time management skills and the skill to prioritize tasks based on their relevance. 

How does the candidate take constructive feedback regarding his/her performance? 

Explain whether the candidate was positive and receptive towards constructive feedback and took the suggestions seriously and worked on improving the specific areas mentioned. 

What specific clinical skills did you notice in the candidate? 

Write about the clinical skills you have noticed in the candidate. Communication, case management, diagnostic, analysis, collaboration etc are examples of clinical skills. Write about the skills you noticed the most in the candidate. 

What are some personal qualities that you observed in the candidate that made him different from the rest? 

Talk about the personal values such as honesty, integrity, punctuality, politeness, social commitment, dedication etc. which you noticed in the candidate. Explain how these qualities made him different from the rest and helped him thrive both in his academic and professional life. 

Why do you think the candidate is moulded for a career in psychiatry? 

Finally, show how strongly you think the candidate is made and moulded for a career in psychiatry. Explain, based on your observation, whether the candidate has the potential to succeed in the residency program adding value to himself and the institute where he is enrolling for the program.

What Do Admissions Officers Look for in A Letter of Recommendation for Psychiatry Residency?

Admission officers will shortlist a candidate based on a number of factors and one of them is the solemnity of the reference letter being supplied. They expect to see the following qualities and information in a reference letter. 

  • Honesty: The honesty of the referee in recommending the candidate to the residency program. 
  • Detailedness: A well-detailed letter which leaves no room for any further clarification or follow-up. 
  • Examples:  A letter which not only lists the candidate’s relevant exposure, skills, and qualities but also supplies contextual and verifiable examples to solidify them. 
  • Objective assessment: The admission panel expects an objective assessment of the candidate’s commitment, potential and suitability for the psychiatry residency program.
  • Any other relevant details: Besides the expected information, any other information that the referee wants to enlighten the admission panel.
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How Long Must A Letter Of Recommendation Psychiatry Residency Be?

Consider the following information when it comes to deciding the length of your psychiatry letter of recommendation. 

  • Check whether you are required to comply with any specific word count requirement by the institute you are applying to.
  • Aim to write your LOR between the range of 400 to 500 words.

Psychiatry Letter of Recommendation Samples

Want to see what a psychiatry letter of recommendation would look like when it is written in an actual context? Here is a psychiatry residency letter of recommendation sample to help you figure that out.

Dear program director,

I am writing this letter to express my strong support and give my honest recommendation to Mr XXXX as he is applying for the psychiatry residency program offered by your institute. I have known Mr XXXX since 2017 ever since he joined our institute for the clinical psychiatry program. He studied psychopathology under my tutelage. Throughout my association with him, I have found him to be an honest, hardworking and dedicated student who wanted to carve out his own space in the field of psychiatry.

XXXX was one of the finest students in the batch of fifty-five students who enrolled on the psychiatry program in 2017. I remember him from the first day of my class since he was very outspoken and didn’t hesitate to raise his questions and doubts, even if they sound trivial. Psychopathology was one of the majors in the first year of the program and he did his coursework and assignments seriously. By the end of the first year, he had developed a strong understanding of psychiatric disorders and their treatments. He also took a serious effort to master micro counselling skills and was convinced that it would enhance his contributions and involvement during the therapeutic processes.

XXX was regular in the class and took part in all events organized by the college. He was particularly interested in the cultural activities and took the initiative for organizing them. In his final year, he directed a drama illustrating the negative impacts of drugs on the psychosocial behaviour of youths. It was brilliantly presented and was selected for intercollege-level performance at the district and national levels. It managed to bring home a number of accolades too.

XXXX has shown strong leadership qualities too. He, along with three other students, initiated a yearly project for psychiatry students which helped them develop advanced level knowledge in psychiatry and patient care.

In summary, XXX has my full support and recommendation for this advanced psychiatry residency program. I am certain that his exceptional leadership qualities, strong clinical skills and willingness to provide better patient care through a humane approach make him the most deserving candidate for this program. I am also certain that he will contribute to the institute and the student community in the same way he did during his graduation period.

If you wish to verify anything further regarding the character, academic excellence or psychiatric expertise, feel free to contact me at the below-given contact details.




Contact Details

Guidelines for Using Sample Letter of Recommendation for Psychiatry Residency

Use the following guidelines while reading the samples for the best impact. 

  • Reference vs template: Do not use the content in the psychiatry lor sample as a template for your psychiatric recommendation letter. Use it only as a reference point. 
  • Learn how to personalize your reference letter by looking at the way it is personalized in the sample reference letter. 
  • Use the sample to familiarize yourself with the LOR writing tone. Unlike other pieces of writing, LOR follows a particular writing tone. 
  • Do not be complacent with reading just one psychiatry letter of recommendation sample. Read multiple samples and understand the range you can go up to while writing your LOR. 
  • Check how the referee has presented his shared experiences with the candidate to strengthen his points from the samples you subject to review.
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Write Your Letter of Recommendation for Psychiatry Residency In 6 Simple Steps

Use the following step-by-step guide to prepare your LOR.

Step 1- Write a salutation and introduction: Begin your LOR with a proper salutation. Know whom you are supposed to address it to. Follow that with an introduction showing the purpose of the letter as well as your relationship with the candidate. 

Step 2- Highlight the candidate’s academic excellence: In the second paragraph, talk about the candidate’s academic excellence with specific examples. Supply some quantitative examples, for instance, the percentage of marks achieved or rank in the class. Give your overall evaluation of the candidate. 

Step 3- Personal qualities that made the candidate stand out: In the next paragraph, talk about the specific personal qualities and strengths that made the candidate stand out from the rest of their classmates. You can talk about personal values like honesty and strengths like focus. 

Step 4- The potential of the candidate to succeed: In this paragraph write about the candidate’s potential to succeed in the psychiatry residency program based on his past academic records, achievements, skills, and strengths. 

Step 5- Conclusion: Conclude the LOR by reemphasizing everything you wrote in the letter. Add it up with a strong recommendation for the candidate. Mention that you are ready to be contacted in case the admission panel needs to and share the contact details for the same. 

Step 6- Proofread and submit: After the writing part is completed, go through the LOR carefully and rectify all mistakes you notice. Repeat this at least three to four times. Check with the student about the LOR submission deadline and procedure and do accordingly.

Who Should Write Your Psychiatry Letter of Recommendation?

You can consider multiple persons for writing your psychiatry letter of recommendation. However, it is important to verify whose LOR is being asked by the program you are applying to.

Psychiatry chairman: LOR from the psychiatry chairman is accepted by all residency programs. So, if you are required just one, go for it. 

Fellowship Program Director: If you have done a psychiatric fellowship already, you are likely to have worked under a program director. And the LOR from him/her is a good one. 

Professor/HOD: You can always rely on your psychology professor or HOD for an LOR when you apply for a residency program in the subject. 

Colleagues/co-workers: LOR from colleagues is not always accepted. However, if you are required to submit multiple LORs for your program, it should be okay to have one written by a colleague.

Need Help In Writing a Letter of Recommendation? Contact Us

Does Your Psychiatry LOR Tick These Boxes? Final Checklist

Before finalizing your psychiatry letter of recommendation, go through the following questions and make sure that your letter complies with all. 

  • Has the LOR been written by a known referee? 
  • Has the LOR been written in a positive tone? 
  • Has the LOR been proofread and made sure that it contains no mistakes? 
  • Does the LOR meet the recommended word count, length, structure, and format? 
  • Is the LOR tailored to the course being applied?

Dos and Don’ts While Writing Letter of Recommendation Psychiatry Residency

We recommend you strictly follow the below Dos and Don’ts while writing your psychiatry residency letters of recommendation. 


  • Start writing the LOR only after collecting all required information. 
  • Use an accepted format and simple and understandable language. 
  • Highlight your positive experiences with the candidate to show why you recommend him.
  • Elaborate why you think the candidate will succeed by comparing past records.
  • Include your contact details for future follow-up correspondence.


  • Forget to explain in what capacity you know the candidate and for how long.
  • Forget to supply sufficient supporting information and examples for your points. 
  • Try to focus on multiple points leaving them all vague. Instead, focus on a few points with clarity. 
  • Plagiarize your reference letter from a sample shared here or found online. 
  • Write your reference letter in a passive voice. Write in active voice instead.


How did you find the process of writing your psychiatry letter of recommendation? We hope the information provided in this blog was useful to you and it helped you write the LOR with more clarity and ease. Remember, a powerful LOR is the key to getting admission to the best psychiatry residency program. 

We are eager to know how helpful this blog and the sample psychiatry letter of recommendation in it were to you and whether you have any questions regarding any topics discussed in it. Feel free to share your valuable suggestions, feedback or questions with us in the comment below.



I am Anjit.V.S, a freelance writer, overseas education consultant and an academic documentation expert. Over the years, I have written documents for thousands of students and hundreds of businesses and individuals worldwide. Many of the prominent study abroad counsellors in India refer me to their students for SOP, LOR, admission essays. personal statements and other similar documents. Not just the academic documents but whatever content needs you have, stay assured. Perfectly impeccable services are delivered.

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