How To Write An Introduction Email To Professor

You’re joining a new class and want to make a good first impression. You’re excited about the class and want to introduce yourself to the professor before it begins.

It’s possible to arrive early on the first day, and also contribute to class discussions but you want to introduce yourself to the professor before any of these things.

You want to send the professor an email to introduce yourself but you aren’t sure how to structure it. Do you include your interests, values, and other relevant information so they know you better?

If you’re concerned about this, we’ve got you covered. This article provides some tips to help get you started on this and subsequent emails.

Additionally, we’ve also included some templates to get you started so you don’t spend too much time thinking about how to write the emails. You simply need to modify them as you see fit.

Tips For Emailing Professors

Let’s look at a few things to keep in mind whenever you’re writing an email to your professor.

Use Proper Title

Always remember to use your professor’s official title in your communication. Identify what their official titles are, before you contact them.

If they’ve officially earned the title “professor”, you should try and use the appropriate title to address them. On the other, you should use “Dr” if they haven’t yet received the “professor” title.

If you aren’t sure what their official titles may be, you can check the course syllabus or the faculty pages of the school website.

Dear Professor {{Last name}}
Dear Dr. {{Last name}}

Use School Email

Every tertiary institution provides its faculty and students with official email addresses. If you don’t know the professor’s email address, we’ll show you how to find it later.

Keep in mind that your professor may not respond if you send them an email using your personal email or if you simply send it to their personal emails.

Using your school email also ensures that the professor will get the mail as your personal email may end up blocked by spam filters.

Some professors also try to ensure there’s a balance between their personal lives and work. Any work-related emails, especially from students, to their personal emails would simply be ignored.

So, if you want them to receive and read your email, you should make sure that you use your school email.

Formal Tone

When emailing your professor, it’s important to keep it professional. No matter how close you are to them, you should avoid using any kind of informal language.

Emojis and other slang that you typically use with friends should be avoided. The professor would merely become irritated.

They might simply interpret it as a sign of disrespect so you should refrain from any form of informal tone or language.

So, unless the professor specifically instructs you to use informal language, always use formal language in any official email discussion between yourself and the professor.

Additionally, any signs of overfriendliness between faculty and students could raise red flags as the school has access to moderate these emails.

Correct Grammar

No one enjoys reading horrible grammar. Professors expect students at the tertiary level of education to have good writing skills.

This is especially true when it comes to writing short messages like emails. That said, everyone makes writing mistakes especially when the information is lengthy.

But you can reduce these mistakes by using tools Grammarly which can help identify errors in your writing.

Keep in mind that these tools aren’t perfect, so it’s advisable to read through them yourself or ask a third party to read through them before you click “send”.

Be Polite

Professors are people like us all and have been in your shoes at some point in their academic journey. Additionally, they’ve also had to interact with students with all sorts of concerns and issues.

So, they’re empathetic to your situation so long as you speak to them politely. So long as you speak to them politely, they’re likely to try their best to help you. On the other hand, they would simply ignore any student acting entitled.

Identify Yourself

Whether you’re a new or returning student, you should identify yourself. Professors teach multiple classes and may not be able to remember every one of their students.

You don’t want to give them additional work to do by not identifying yourself. No professor wants to spend the next 30 minutes looking through their student list to identify who you may be.

Either identify yourself in the introduction of the email or include it in the email signature. You can also do both to make things easier.

Clear And Brief

This isn’t the time to show them how verbose you may be. You may have the time to do that but that doesn’t mean they have the time to read through it all. Avoid writing long emails if you want them to read through it all.

Professors receive multiple emails from students, other staff members, publications, and more. Don’t make things difficult for them by writing lengthy emails. Shorten the email as much as possible while also maintaining a polite tone.

Emails aren’t the best way to tell them about your hobbies, skills, values, and other personal information. You can shelf that information till when you have an in-person meeting with them.

They don’t have time to read long emails about such personal interests. You can schedule a meeting with them during office hours to discuss such matters.

Explain Your Situation

You’ll be joining their class and just want to say hi or tell them how excited you are. Let them know this in the email in as few sentences as possible.

No professor would take offense to such emails. They would rather appreciate the email and may even respond. Don’t worry if they don’t respond though as professors have very busy schedules.

Don’t Forget Attachment

Don’t forget to attach any necessary documents if necessary. Confirm this before you click “send” on the email. Can’t remember the number of times I’ve sent an email simply to receive a response that I neglected to attach the necessary documents.

They may simply ignore the email if you don’t include any necessary attachments and the results could be detrimental in the case of time-sensitive documents.

So, it’s advisable to always double-check to ensure that the email has successfully been attached before pressing the send button.

Wait Patiently

Avoid bombarding them with reminders or you can get blocked. If they haven’t responded to your email, don’t worry yourself.

Professors have busy schedules and only a few would actually respond to your introductory email. This doesn’t mean they don’t care or haven’t received your email but it’s simply a result of their busy schedules.

Walk up to them after your first day in their class and they would remember who you are.

Clear Subject Line

Don’t forget to include a subject in your email if you want a response. Professors receive loads of emails daily and subject lines help them identify urgent emails so they can quickly respond.

It makes it easy for them to understand the content of your email without spending too much time reading the full body of your email, which saves them a lot of time.

Excited About Joining {{Class title}} Class

End Formally

Thank the professor for their time and consideration as you close the email. If you didn’t specify it in the email’s introduction, provide your full name, class, and section information.

Thank you
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section}}

How To Find Your Professor’s Email

So how do you find the professor’s email address if this is the first time, you’re reaching out to them?

School Website

Check your faculty page on the school website. These pages usually include information about professors including their official contact information.

Course Overview (LMS)

If your school uses some form of learning management system (LMS) you can check the course overview page for the professor’s assigned course.

You’ll find the professor’s official contact details on the course overview pages.

Course Syllabus

You can also check out the professor’s syllabus for their contact information. You’ll usually find the professor’s contact information as well as their attendance policies on the course syllabus.

Other Students

You’re most likely not the only student who had to email the professor at some point. So, you can ask your classmates for the professor’s email.

Even if none of them has it, you can be sure that someone will provide some advice on where they may have seen it along the line.

Sample Emails To Introduce Yourself To Professor

Template 1: New Student Introducing Yourself To Professor

Email Subject
Excited About Joining {{Class title}} Class

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name is {{Your name}}, and I’m excited to be taking your {{Class title}} this coming semester. I have been following your work in the {{Field}} and I believe your expertise will make the class an invaluable experience.
I’m excited to begin and would like to better prepare myself for the class. Is there any advice or resource you can offer to help me better prepare?
Thanks very much for your time and consideration.
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section Number}}

Template 2: New Student Introducing Yourself To Professor Before Class Begins

Email Subject 
Excited To Join {{Class title}}

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name’s {{Full name}} and I’m a {{Student/Freshman}} studying {{Program}}. I will be taking your {{Class title}} this coming semester and wanted to express my excitement.
I’m very interested in {{Interest related to class}} and I believe your expertise will make this an invaluable experience for me. I'm eager to get started and would appreciate any advice or resources you can recommend.
Thanks very much for your time and consideration.
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section Number}}

Hi there and welcome to UnitWriter. My name's Chris, an expert in crafting effective email templates for all occasions. I created this blog to share my knowledge, by offering tips and templates to help get you started on your emails. Hope it's been helpful

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