An academic letter of recommendation is a one to two page letter that highlights a student's academic history, character, and academic and/or career goals. The letter expands upon a student's report card or transcript, providing insight into what kind of student and/or potential employee they are. It is important to ask a teacher that you are confident will write what you want the hiring company or academic institution to hear. Often, recommendation letters are requested in sealed envelopes, with the signature of the letter’s author over the seal. This is done to ensure the reference is authentic and speaks the truth about the job candidate.