Friday, August 12, 2016

10 Elements of an Effective, Non-Annoying Email. From

Here’s a template you can follow in constructing your email to a professor. Each element is explained further below.

Dear [1] Professor [2] Last-Name [3],

This is a line that recognizes our common humanity [4].

I’m in your Class Name, Section Number that meets on This Day [5]. This is the question I have or the help I need [6]. I’ve looked in the syllabus and at my notes from class and online and I asked someone else from the class [7], and I think This Is The Answer [8], but I’m still not sure. This is the action I would like you to take [9].

Signing off with a Thank You is always a good idea [10],
Favorite Student



  1. I am THIS CLOSE to sending this to all of our new students, along with instructions on how to speak to their professors in person, how to behave in class, etc.

  2. I have had this bookmarked for months, thinking I will post it on the class LMS or send it to all my students, but I haven't actually done so yet. I probably wont, but it's a lovely dream.

  3. many of my students would probably just copy and paste it:
    Dear [1] Professor [2] Last-Name [3], etc

    1. This was my exact thought.

  4. This is a formula. My undergrads never grasped how those worked. I pitied their math and science instructors.

    - Anon y Mouse

  5. I can barely read because I am drunk.
    I am drunk because I work with complete fucktards.
    This post about ten elephants is good.
    Just, you know, it gets old.

  6. Don't fucking dare write "Thanks in advance" as if like some genie I must do your bidding.

    Leave it at "Thanks." That allows me the illusion that you mean "Thanks for your kind consideration, whatever the outcome."

  7. I'm teaching remedial writing, and I'm actually using this as an assignment template. By goodness, you will both learn to use commas correctly and also learn how not to look like a complete jack*ss to your professors.