USC Marshall IBEAR Recommendation

I Letter of Recommendation
II Notbale Recommendation Questions
III Assessment Grid

You can download a PDF of the exact form your recommender will see below.

Download USC Marshall IBEAR Recommendation Questions 2016-17

This recommendation form is for the 2016-17 application season. Generally speaking recommendation forms do not change from year to year so it’s a safe bet to assume that the same recommendation form will be used during the 2017-18 application season. When the 2017-18 application goes live (fall 2017) the download file and this page will be updated.

USC Marshall requires that IBEAR applicants submit two recommendations. Please take note that Marshall does not offer up specific recommender prompts either on their website or in the online recommendation form! You may want to share the following lines (from the IBEAR website) with your recommender.

Letters of recommendation are used as a gauge of your professional achievements and managerial potential. We prefer that one of your two recommendations be provided by a direct supervisor. This person should provide specific observations and examples of your leadership, teamwork, analytical skills and personal qualities. Letters of recommendation must be submitted online.

USC Marshall IBEAR Adcom

A common myth is to have the most senior individual at an organization complete the recommendation. In reality, obtaining a recommendation from someone who can share broad themes coupled with specific work examples is most advantageous.

After you input your recommender’s name and email inside the IBEAR application, he/she will receive an email directing him/her to IBEAR’s online receommendation form.


Back to top: Outline

I USC Marshall IBEAR Letter of Recommendation

Marshall asks recommenders to upload a PDF of their recommenation to the online recommendation form. Marshall doesn’t provide recommenders with any prompts so I’ve included some standard, EMBA-level prompts below to help your recommender. He/She may choose to respond to only a sub-set of these prompts. There is no word limit, but I’d suggest your recommender limit him/herself to 1200 words in total.

  1. How has the applicant’s career progressed during the time you have known or worked with him/her? Please be as specific as possible.

  2. In your opinion, what is the applicant’s most outstanding quality? What makes this applicant an exceptional colleague or employee? Please use specific examples to demonstrate these qualities.

  3. Please discuss the applicant’s weaknesses and the efforts, if any, the applicant has made to improve in these areas.

  4. Please discuss your observations concerning the applicant’s leadership skills. Please cite specific situations that demonstrate the applicant’s leadership abilities.

  5. What is your impression of the candidate’s ability to work closely with others? Please describe a specific situation that illustrates the candidate’s ability to work in group project environments.


Back to top: Outline

II Notable USC Marshall IBEAR Recommendation Questions

Aside from the typical questions Booth asks recommenders (Name, Address, Phone etc.) here are some notable short answer questions you should be aware of.

  • How long have you known the applicant? (dropdown)
  • How well do you know the applicant? (dropdown)
  • In what capacity do you know the applicant? (dropdown)
  • Against which group are you comparing the applicant? (text field) Note: Marshall wants a one sentence answer like: ‘All students I know who have entered graduate school’ or All students I have taught’
  • What are the applicant’s chief weaknesses or areas for growth? (text field) Note: I’d suggest a short 1-2 sentence summary here of your chief weaknesses. These weaknesses should be further elaborated on in the PDF recommendation letter.

Back to top: Outline

III USC Marshall IBEAR Recommendation Assessment Grid

The IBEAR assessment grid includes a number of qualities. Recommenders are asked to rate the applicant using one of the following five responses:

  • Excellent
  • Good
  • Average
  • Below Average
  • Poor
  • Not Observed

The Qualities in the assessment grid are as follows:

  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Integrity
  • Oral Communication
  • Self-Awareness
  • Analytical Ability
  • Research Ability
  • Initiative
  • Potential for Success in Chosen Field
  • Maturity
  • Self-Confidence
  • Written Communication
  • Overall Evaluation
Back to top