Cover Letter

Basic Requirements

Length: 1 page 

Formatting: Use Basic Business Letter Format in “Block Format” (see here for examples)

Special Instructions:

  • Complete the Organization Analysis questionnaire before writing your letter: Organization Analysis
  • Submit a copy of the job description with your letter
  • Submit your cover letter as a PDF to preserve formatting

Required Reading and Resources

Required Reading


Project Instructions

  • Using Career Buffs, search for an entry-level position or internship that you are qualified to apply for. Warning: You are required to use Career Buffs and write an original cover letter, following the steps laid out here, for credit. If you submit anything but an originally written letter for this class you will lose your eligibility to revise, as well as fail the assignment
  • Save the job description
  • Find the company’s website
  • Fill out the Organization Analysis questionnaire
  • Use the guidelines in the “3 Easy Paragraphs” reading to organize and write your cover letter
  • Check, re-check and triple check your letter for sentence level errors, fluidity and personal voice. This assignment will be critiqued especially rigorously for writing style
  • Submit your CL as a Word document to D2L Dropbox

Revision Options

Your cover letter is only eligible for revision if the Basic Requirements laid out in the assignment prompt have been completely fulfilled. Any failure to follow the directions may void your eligibility to revise. A failure to complete the Organization Analysis will result in a failing grade. 

Grading Rubric

Rhetorical Strategy:

How well have you identified and addressed your audience?

____ 25 (Pathos): Development of Personal Voice

  • How well have you established your authentic voice in this letter?
  • How well have you executed a conversational, but professional tone?

____ 25 (Ethos): Research and Style

  • How well are you demonstrating knowledge of the company and the open position?
  • How well edited is your copy?
  • How fluid are your sentences?
  • How concise is your letter?

____ 25 (Logos): Organization of Information and Document Design

  • How well have you tailored your letter to the needs of the organization?
  • How well have you shown that you are the best fit for the open position?
  • How well have you connected your concrete work experience with the desired qualities in the open position?

Rhetorical Awareness:

How well have you addressed the project’s requirements and objectives?

____ 25