Skip Navigation

Reference, Credential & Recommendation Files

Career Center staff provide students with counseling and guidance on how to obtain reference letters and prepare effective graduate school, internship and employment applications.

Carleton students and alumni can collect and manage their letters of recommendation via the Career Center’s partnership with Interfolio, Inc.  Interfolio offers credential file holders and recommendation writers a comprehensive online service which is accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Recommendation letter writers can submit confidential or non-confidential letters directly to your Interfolio account at no charge.

NOTE:  Applicants to law school should have their recommenders send their letters of recommendation directly to LSAC’s Credentials Assembly Service (CAS).  Learn more about this service. 

Current Students

Why start A Reference/Credential File?

A reference file is an easy place for you to keep track of reference letters people write for you. Reference or recommendation letters can be used for graduate school, employment, and internship applications. 

How to get started?

We suggest that you identify three to four people to write letters of reference on your behalf.  The writers should know you well and be able to positively speak to your character, work traits, abilities and accomplishments. Ask professors who know your abilities as a student as well as employers who know you in an internship or work setting.  Allow them the opportunity to refuse if they are not comfortable recommending you.  And, be sure to request references well in advance (a minimum of two weeks) of needing them.

How Do I Set Up A File?

For current students, the Career Center will consider covering the cost of an Interfolio account for one year ($43.20/year).  To create an account with the fee waiver, please contact the Career Center (Ext. 4293) for a special Carleton only link to set up your Interfolio account.


To Create an Account with Interfolio:  Follow this link.


Faculty and other letter writers may establish a free writer's account at Interfolio, which enables direct uploading of documents. Some of the benefits include:

Quickly and easily upload letters. Electronically uploading a file to the system is the fastest and safest way to submit a document to Interfolio on behalf of your students. It is immediately available for the student to use in the application process. This saves time and limits anxiety as deadlines approach!

Retain access to uploaded documents. You will never again have to rummage through your papers to retrieve an old letter of recommendation. Your writer's account enables you to have access to all documents you have uploaded into the system. Original documents may be easily retrieved so that you can edit and update them.

Increased fraud protection. As a security precaution, Interfolio does not receive documents via e-mail, nor do they allow unknown individuals to directly upload documents. By requiring you to set up a writer's account before sending a document electronically, they can verify your identity, thereby reducing the fraudulent submission of letters of recommendation.

Convenience. Though the benefits of a writer's account are numerous, it is an optional service. With a writer's account, you can electronically upload documents to Interfolio's safe and secure system. If you choose not to create a writer's account, you can still mail or fax letters to Interfolio.

Create a free writer's account on Interfolio.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will my file be maintained by Interfolio?
You can create a free Dossier account, and you will always have access to that account. Your free Dossier account does not expire and you will always be able to access the files in your free account.

Is there an accompanying charge for Interfolio’s service?
You can sign up for a free Dossier account. With that, you can request confidential letters of recommendation and curate your materials. Once you are ready to send your materials in a delivery, you will need to upgrade to Dossier Deliver. It is $48 to upgrade and with that comes 50 delivery credits. Your Deliver account lasts for 1 year. Find more details on the difference between the two accounts here.

What if I don’t want to use this service?
If you no longer have a need for your reference file, or do not want your file managed by Interfolio, you may close your confidential reference file and have the contents destroyed by contacting the Career Center.  Please note that you may always contact professors and reference writers and ask them to send individual reference letters directly to the institutions that you specify.  You may also choose to obtain non-confidential letters and personally manage those documents.

Career Center pages maintained by Andrea Kubinski
This page was last updated on 2 July 2019