Composite Letter

A Composite Letter is a summative and evaluative review of an Emory undergraduate student's experiences, including academic and extracurricular experiences.  As a snapshot of the undergraduate experience, the Composite Letter places Emory students in context with their peers. The Composite Letter is a component of the application process for students applying to medical, dental, optometry, or podiatry school. 

The Composite Letter Writer compiles information from the following sources to create the entire Composite Letter (Any information provided in the sources listed below may be used in the Composite Letter):

  • Student application (includes transcripts and test scores)
  • Student Activities List
  • Student Short Essays and Personal Statement
  • 3-4 Letters of Recommendation
  • Composite Letter Interview

Sample Composite Letter application timeline and checklist

Instructions for submitting the Composite Letter for 2019 Application Cycle:

Frequently Asked Questions

Who should apply for a Composite Letter?

Students planning to apply to medical, dental, optometry, or podiatry school school should apply for a Composite Letter. This service is provided to current Emory undergraduates (juniors and seniors) and Emory alumni who have graduated within two years.

Are Composite Letters required?

Composite Letters are typically not required by individual medical, dental, optometry, or podiatry schools, however they are held in high esteem by admission boards.

When should I apply for a Composite Letter?

Students will apply for a Composite Letter during the Fall semester preceding the summer in which they plan to apply. For example, if a student plans to begin health professional school in the Fall of 2019, they will apply to programs in the Summer of 2018, and apply for a Composite Letter in the Fall of 2017. 

What requirements do I need to fulfill in order to be eligible to apply for a Composite Letter?

Students must attend a Group Mandatory Check-Up and the corresponding 1:1 Follow-Up in their Sophomore year in order to be eligible to apply for a Composite Letter. We encourage all students who are considering careers in medicine, dentistry, optometry, or podiatry to complete the required meetings in their Sophomore year, even if they have not made a final decision on their career path. Students who did not complete the Group Mandatory Check-Up and 1:1 Follow-Up in their Sophomore year, should contact the PreHealth Mentoring Office to discuss their options. Click here to see a sample Composite Letter Timeline and Checklist.

Composite Letter Alumni Policy

Alumni of Emory University’s undergraduate colleges (College of Arts and Sciences, Business or Nursing) are eligible to apply for a Composite Letter up to two years post-graduation.

Current Emory graduate students who did not receive an undergraduate degree from Emory are not eligible for a Composite Letter.

Read the Composite Letter Alumni Policy.

Credentials File Alumni Policy

Effective this application cycle (2019 matriculation), all alumni more than 2 years out will no longer have access to the credentials file service to send recommendation letters (including both Composite Letters and/or individual letters). If your credentials file has not been purged, you have the option to request all of the letters in your file to be sent to another letter service such as Interfolio. To generate this action, you need to submit a request via the Pre-Health Database:

  • In the "School Name" area, enter the name of the Letter Service (for example, Interfolio)
  • In the "Message" area, enter the physical mailing address or the email address to send as a .pdf attachment.
Keep in mind you will need to establish an account with Interfolio or another letter service that you choose. Once the Career Center receives your request and sends the letters over to the letter service, the Career Center will no longer have access to your letters. Processing time for all requests during this high volume period is a minimum of 7-10 business days. There is no charge for this action.

2018 Composite Letter Process

The 2017-2018 Composite Letter Checklist (for the 2019 Applicant Cycle) can be found here: CL Checklist.

To be eligible to apply for a Composite Letter, all individuals must complete two required meetings: the Group Mandatory Check-Up (formerly the PHHR) and the 1:1 Follow-Up. These meetings are meant to be completed in the Sophomore year. Students who did not complete these meetings in their Sophomore year should contact their advisor as soon as possible to discuss their options for applying for a Composite Letter.

If you are unsure if you've completed the Group PHHR/Mandatory Check-Up or 1:1 Follow-Up, please contact the PHMO and a staff member will check for you. The deadline to complete a Group Mandatory Check-Up and 1:1 Follow-Up is November 1, 2017 in order to apply for a 2018 Composite Letter - no exceptions.

All eligible students/alumni will be emailed an "Intent to Apply" form via email in early September.  All students and alumni who indicate they plan to apply in the upcoming cycle (for 2019 matriculation) will be given access to the Composite Letter Canvas course. All application materials will be housed in Canvas. Students and alumni may begin working on the application as soon as they have access to Canvas. Alumni will be granted a sponsored account in order to log into Canvas.

2018 Composite Letter Application Materials

A complete Composite Letter Application will consist of:

  • Completed 2018 Composite Letter Application Form
  • Completed 2018 Activities Log
  • Completed 2018 Essays
  • Signed 2018 Composite Letter Consent and Waiver Form
  • Transcript(s) of college-level coursework taken at any institution outside of Emory
  • Applicant's headshot

All items must be submitted in Canvas by 11:59pm on January 15, 2018.

Additional steps in the Composite Letter process will be due throughout the Spring 2018 semester. Additional information will be posted in Canvas.

2018 Composite Letter Updates

Individuals who applied to a healthcare professional program in the past using a Composite Letter and are reapplying to the same type of program may request to add updates to their original Composite Letter. This request is ONLY for individuals who are reapplying to the same type of program for which the original Composite Letter was written (e.g. Medical or Dental). If you are changing career paths, a Composite Letter Update is not appropriate.

If you are already an alumnus, you are eligible for an Update up to 2 years after your graduation.

If you applied for a Composite Letter during a previous cycle, but did not apply to a professional program (medical, dental, etc.), then you are not eligible for a Composite Letter Update. You will need to apply for a new Composite Letter and must adhere to all Composite Letter application deadlines.

The 2018 Composite Letter Update application will be posted here in late Spring 2018. The CL Update application must be submitted by June 30, 2018. If approved, the updated Composite Letter will be completed on a rolling basis and submitted to the Pre-Health Database. Once posted, follow the Career Center instructions to make a request to release your CL Update to the appropriate application service.

You will be asked to upload a current resume, updated personal statement, transcript(s) and consent form.


2018 Composite Letter Update Form: Click HERE.

Emory's Continuing Writing Requirement

Emory's Writing Intensive requirements (CWRT) will fulfill many health professional schools' English requirements, as long as the courses are taken in the English language.  The PHMO can send a letter describing Emory's CWRT policy to any health professional school that requests it.  See here for further information. 

If a school you are applying to requests a letter from Emory explaining this policy, please complete and submit this form

Withdrawing a Composite Letter Application

If you are a current Composite Letter Applicant and you wish to withdraw your application, please complete this form.