Sample Email To Professor Asking For Syllabus

You’ve joined a professor’s class and need the course syllabus to better prepare for classes or you’re interested in the class and want a look at the course syllabus so you can make your final decision.

How do you structure the email to ensure that you receive a positive response from the professor?

Fortunately, we’ve got you covered as we’ll provide some samples to get you started. Additionally, we’ve included some tips to keep in mind when emailing your professor.

Tips For Emailing Professors

Keep these tips in mind when emailing your professor. They can also be useful when emailing instructors in general.

Use Proper Title

Before you write the email, find out what their formal titles are. You should use the proper title “Dr.” if they don’t yet have the title “professor.”

On the other hand, if they are a “professor,” you ought to refer to them by that title. To get their designations, professors go to great lengths. Appreciating their titles won’t hurt in any way.

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

Use School Email

All tertiary institutions give their faculty members and students access to official email accounts. We’ll later demonstrate how to locate the professor’s email address if you don’t already know it.

Remember that if you send an email to your professor using your personal email or just to their personal email, they might not respond.

Using your school email also guarantees that the professor will receive the message because spam filters may block personal emails.

Additionally, some professors make an effort to maintain a balance between their personal and professional lives. 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 the professor, you should avoid using any kind of informal language.

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

The professor might interpret it as a sign of disrespect. You should be aware that this email is accessible to the school, and that they control it.

Therefore, any signs of overfriendliness between faculty and students could raise red flags. Unless the professor specifically instructs you to use informal language, always use formal language in any official email discussion between yourself and the professor.

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 any errors in your writing.

Keep in mind that these tools aren’t perfect, so it’s advisable to read through them to identify emails yourself or have a third party go through before you send them.

Be Polite

Avoid making demands as that will lead to a negative response. Don’t presume that you’ll be receiving special accommodations.

Keep in mind the professor is in a position of authority. Even if you dislike the professor, you should refrain from any negativity in your email.

After all, being polite doesn’t cost anything, especially when rudeness could lead to consequences.

Identify Yourself

The professor may not remember every one of their students. Don’t take it personal. Professors may teach multiple classes and may not be able to remember every student.

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 the professor how verbose you may be. You may have the time to do that but that doesn’t mean the professor has the time to read through it all. Avoid writing long emails to the professor 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.

Explain Your Situation

If you need them to do something for you, ensure that you specify this in the email. You don’t want them to spend the next 30 minutes thinking about all the other options and whether it’ll be convenient for you.

Any back-and-forth emails may end up making them lose interest. So, if you have an idea what you need from them, politely explain it in the email. Try not to sound entitled in any way.

If you’ve already discussed what you need with the professor, you can simply remind them of the discussion in a few words.

Don’t Forget Attachment

Don’t forget to attach any necessary documents if necessary. Confirm this before you send the email. I can’t tell the number of times I’ve sent an email simply to receive a response that I neglected to attach the necessary documents.

The professor may simply ignore the email if you don’t include any necessary attachments. 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 it has been more than 24 hours since they responded, you can send them a reminder.

Remember that some professors might not check their work emails on weekends and holidays. You must therefore be patient.

If you haven’t heard from them in a while, you can also go to their office. If you are going to send them reminders, you should be careful how frequently you do so.

Act Early

Don’t wait till weeks after the class has started to ask the professor for the syllabus. You should contact them as soon as possible to make their work easier.

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.

Requesting Syllabus For {{Course Title}}

End Formally

Thank them for their time and consideration as you close the email. If you didn’t specify them 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 Email To Professor Asking For Syllabus

Template 1: Request Syllabus For Course

Email Subject
Request For Syllabus {{Course title}}

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name is {{Your name}}. I am currently enrolled in your {{Course title}} course and would like to request a copy of the course syllabus.
I am looking forward to the class and would like to start preparing for the upcoming semester. Thank you so much for your time and assistance.
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section Number}}

Template 2: Requesting Syllabus For Course You’re Considering

Email Subject 
Requesting Syllabus For {{Course title}}

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name is {{Your name}} and I’m starting as a graduate student next semester. I would appreciate a copy of the course syllabus for the {{Course title}} that you’ll be teaching.
I am very interested in taking the course and would like an in-depth look at the topics that will be tackled as well as any requirements.
Thanks very much for your help.
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section Number}}

Template 3: Requesting Syllabus To Consider Course

Email Subject 
Request For {{Course title}} Syllabus

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name is {{Your name}} and I’m a {{First/Second/Third/Final}} year student in the {{Department name}} department.
I came across your {{Course title}}, which caught my attention as I am very interested in {{Your interest}}. I would love to learn more about it and was wondering if you would be willing to share the course syllabus.
Thank you very much for your assistance.
{{Your full name}}
{{Class and Section Number}}

Template 4: Requesting Syllabus For Already Enrolled Class

Email Subject 
Request For Syllabus – {{Course title}}

Dear Professor {{Last name}},
I hope this email finds you well. My name is {{Your name}} and I’m in your {{Class title}} class that meets on {{Meeting days}}. I’m unable to locate the course syllabus on the learning management system despite my efforts.
I was wondering if it’d be possible to send me a copy so I can better prepare for the upcoming classes. Thank you 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

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *