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    Hello
    I have a quick question.

    I'm just finishing an internship with an MP, and looking for my next one. The MP has already given me a reference, on his letterhead and signed, for me to show to any potential employers. I'm in the process of getting a reference from one of my university lecturers, but theyre being a bit funny about it. The guy in particular never liked me that much, but is pretty much the only person I can ask as my other tutor has moved to Palestine and is pretty much incommunicado. The thing is, can I reasonably ask for a similar letter of reference from this tutor, or am I being unreasonable? he keeps asking for the job details, and while i'm applying for quite a number of positions and it would be pretty unfeasabile to give him each and every email address. Surely this way is easier, even if he does seem to want to keep the contents of this reference from me...

    Anybody been in a similar situation? Am I being naive/overreacting to this? (sorry it wasnt as short as I thought)
    xx
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    (Original post by xeastra)
    Hello
    I have a quick question.

    I'm just finishing an internship with an MP, and looking for my next one. The MP has already given me a reference, on his letterhead and signed, for me to show to any potential employers. I'm in the process of getting a reference from one of my university lecturers, but theyre being a bit funny about it. The guy in particular never liked me that much, but is pretty much the only person I can ask as my other tutor has moved to Palestine and is pretty much incommunicado. The thing is, can I reasonably ask for a similar letter of reference from this tutor, or am I being unreasonable? he keeps asking for the job details, and while i'm applying for quite a number of positions and it would be pretty unfeasabile to give him each and every email address. Surely this way is easier, even if he does seem to want to keep the contents of this reference from me...

    Anybody been in a similar situation? Am I being naive/overreacting to this? (sorry it wasnt as short as I thought)
    xx
    The tutor is quite correct and is doing their best for you. A pre-written letter has limited use, it needs must be generic because it cannot be tailored to a specific role. As politely as you can, you should always ask if you can ask for a reference when needed for a specific job from a potential referee, rather than accept a pre-written letter.

    Nowadays you rarely go into a job armed with pre-written letters. It is up to the potential employer to ask for references and get fresh references that suit their specific requirements.

    It is in your best interests to provide your tutor with job details, because then they can tailor their reference. So for example, I asked my PhD Supervisor if he would be happy to give me a reference for job applications and if he wanted me to ask for each specific application, or if he would be happy to be given for a whole batch. Unsurprisingly, he didn't want to be emailed about every single application, so said he was happy for me to put his details whenever I thought he would be an appropriate referee. But I have said that if I know he is going to be asked for a reference, either when a potential employer tells me, or because he tells me he has been asked, I will give him a quick background to the job/company and some guidance on what they want to know about and what he might like to comment on.
 
 
 
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