Good Morning, Are you working to apply for MS or/and PhD Admission to programs in the USA and Canada? I heard a lot of people have been emailing Professors without any response.
Let me teach you a bunch of things today.
- Tips & Format
- Common errors
I understand that there are a number of reasons for which you may be writing Professors, in foreign schools however, I am going to focus on two likely reasons.
1. You wish to obtain a Funded Graduate Assistant Position at that school.
2. To contact a prospective faculty advisor.
Previously, I have written about why and how you should email prospective professors (which the mindset of obtaining funding). How to email Professors to improve your chances at being funded
Also, for people who need information on ways to identify Professors who are doing really well (with abundant grants and traction), quickly read the article: How to conduct research in Ms(Master of science) or a PhD Thesis
Okay. Let us not digress so much. Let us talk about the emails.
A. Email Address
I do not know how to sugar coat this. If your email address is “out of the ordinary”, you should consider obtaining an one that is more respectable and friendly.
How To Select A Name For Your Personal Email Address
Professors rarely open emails with addresses that resemble “phishing emails”. The popular convention that is relatable is either of:
first name.lastname @ xyz . com
first name initial.lastname @ xyz . com
I believe you get the idea. Make it look “official” and “friendly”
When you are emailing Professors, try to send your emails in the mornings. This increases your chances of claiming a spot in their To-do lists for the day, and getting a response sooner.
Regardless, If you do not get a response, you can always send a reminder.
C. Be More Direct
Instead of just saying that you are “interested in working as part of the Professor’s research team”, ask “if the Professor is taking in new students in your proposed term of enrollment”.
This immediately gives you access to information regarding recruitment.
D. Do Not Email Every Professor in The Department
This is huge red flag and I will explain why.
At this stage, I am assuming that you have a research interest or a broad range of research focus. Practically, not all professors, in a dept, are conducting the same research hence expressing interest to “assist everyone of them in research” can present you as a candidate who is unsure of what he/she wants to really do.
I advise you speak to one at a time (aside the graduate program director). Based on responses, you can decide who else to contact.
E. Write Your Email Correctly
Check for grammatical errors and email structure. If you do not know how to write emails, you need to learn how to do that. Proof read it before sending. Let me share a link to a good article that can teach you.
Read: Email Tips: Top 10 Strategies for Writing Effective Email
What can I do if a professor does not reply to an introductory email: What can I do if a professor does not reply to an introductory email, my future relies on my speaking with them, and the matter is time-sensitive?What can I do if a professor does not reply to an introductory email, my future relies on my speaking with them, and the matter is time-sensitive?
F. Do Your Due Diligence
Ensure that you do your research (check the university’s website and Professor’s research website) before making contact. This is necessary so you do not ask questions that have explicit answers online. You can also share that you have done this.
To crown it all, here is a very well written article detailing Advice for Prospective Research Students: Advice for Prospective Research Students
This will help you learn the specifics.