References (sometimes called letters of reference or letters of recommendation) must be electronically submitted via the Evaluator Portal (is this branded as the Reference Portal for SocialWorkCAS?) by the references themselves. References cannot be completed or submitted by the applicant or another party on the reference's behalf.
We are not responsible for verifying a reference's identity. If a discrepancy is found, we reserve the right to contact the applicant or reference to investigate and to share the discrepancy without comment with all programs.
Before You Begin
The instructions below will help ensure the reference process goes smoothly.
- All references must be submitted electronically.
- Research each program's requirements. You should determine whether your programs have specific requirements regarding reference roles or relationships before listing references on your application. Many programs have strict guidelines and completed references cannot be removed or replaced.
- Prepare your references. Once you choose your references, be sure to inform them about the process and that they will be completing the reference electronically. We recommend getting their preferred email address and asking that they monitor that inbox for your reference request, including any junk or spam folders.
You are required to enter information for 3 references. Two of those must be completed by your references in order for your application to be considered complete. If you want to submit more than 3 references, you should send those additional references directly to your programs.
There are three parts to a reference:
- A profile section where references enter their contact information in case your program needs to get in touch with them. They can also correct any errors to their name or title.
- A ratings section where your references evaluate you on several different criteria.
- An open letter of reference which must be uploaded in .PDF, .RTF, .DOC, or .DOCX format. Please note the file size limit for letters is 5 MB. Because all letters of reference are sent to each school you apply to, references should be general in their form of address (use "to whom it may concern," etc.) and avoid referring to any specific school or program in their letter.
Submit a Reference Request
- In the References section, click Create Reference Request.
- Enter the reference's full name and email address.
- Select the date by which you would like this reference completed. We recommend selecting a date that is at least four weeks before your earliest deadline.
- Enter a brief message or note for your reference.
- Select whether you want to waive your right of access to the reference.
- Click the checkboxes to indicate your permission for us (and programs) to contact your references.
- Click Save This Reference Request to submit it. Once you do so, an email is immediately sent to the reference.
- Confirm with your references that they received the email notification.
- Use the Check Status tab to monitor the status of your references. Follow up with your references if they are still marked as Requested or Accepted. It is your responsibility to ensure that reference requests are received and completed on time. We will not notify applicants about missing references.
Change a Reference's Email Address
If you entered an incorrect email address for a reference, or if your reference asks that you send the reference request to a different email address, you must delete the reference and then re-add them with the correct email.
Selecting Yes indicates to programs that your reference completed their letter of reference with the understanding that you would not be able to view it. This means you will not be able to see the content of the reference. Programs may view this type of reference as a more accurate representation of an applicant's qualifications.
Selecting No indicates to programs that your reference completed their letter of reference with the understanding that you may choose to view it in the future. Selecting this option does not allow you to view your reference via the application. If you do not waive your right to view the reference, you may ask your reference for a copy of the recommendation. Programs may view this type of reference as a less accurate representation of an applicant's qualifications.
Once a selection is made, it cannot be changed, so please consider the choices carefully.