How to write an email to teachers and professors

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A thoughtful guide on how to write emails to teachers

Email communication has become an indispensable part of learning and education. With the advent of remote learning, most communications between you and your teachers are going to happen via emails. But are you sure that you know how to write a formal email to your professors and teachers? Writing an email to a teacher requires a wide range of ethics because an informal and vague email can ruin your impression. Besides, not writing emails to your professors in an ideal way can sometimes also affect your evaluation or cause confusion at both ends. But what is the right way to send an email message to a professor? This detailed guide covers all the aspects of email etiquette and the best practices that you should follow while writing to your educators. Moreover, the guide is inclusive of sample emails that span across various purposes for writing to a teacher. Before we move to the best mannerisms of writing an email to a teacher, let us shed some light on basic email etiquette.

Essential Fundamentals of Email Etiquette

Elucidation on Fundamentals of Email Etiquette

  • Polite tone

    When a student is writing an email to a teacher, or even in general, the tone of the email is important. To begin with, students should keep the tone of the email polite to extend the maximum respect to their teachers. Besides, the tone of the email should be positive. On the contrary, negative words that begin with ‘non’ or ‘un’ should be avoided while writing emails. You do not want that a teacher sounds rude to you in the email in the classroom. The teacher will only have similar expectations from his students.

  • Specification of attachment

    When people write emails that contain files in attachments, they should specify the name and the format of the attachment in the email. This gives the teacher a brief idea about the file or document that the student is attaching. Besides, such attention to detail by students can be very impressive for teachers.

    For instance, A student can write

    Please Find Attached- “Assignment on molecular biology.” This file is in PDF format.

  • Content uniformity

    While writing an email to teachers, students should maintain uniformity in the content of their email. To explain, they should not use different font sizes or use colors to highlight points. How will you feel if an email received by you has variations in font styles and font color throughout the email message? You may not even want to respond to that email. This is why maintaining uniformity is imperative. Also, students should avoid introducing a new subject or topic in the middle of an email thread. If there is a new topic for discussion, it should be a separate email thread with a defined subject.

  • Clear subject line

    A good subject line serves to introduce the intent of the email to the receiver and convince him to read it. To substantiate, the subject line of the email specifies the topic or the context of the email and related attachments. This short sentence is of immense value for the readability of an email message. It is noteworthy that according to email subject line statistics,33% of recipients open the email based on clear and effective subject lines. To add, 69% of people report emails as spam on the basis of the subject line. Hence, you should realize the importance of the subject line and not take it lightly.

  • Good Grammar

    Grammar is an essential part of any form of communication. A person’s grammatical skills play a major role in creating a good impression and attracting the attention of the listener or the reader. Moreover, good grammar is an attribute of high proficiency in a language. The significance of grammar is immense even in modern communications and especially when you a student is writing an email to a teacher, he does not want to be grammatically incorrect. So, an individual needs to be precise with his grammar in email communication, and for that, he can seek help from the Grammarly website or other grammar check tools.

  • Being double sure

    This is yet another important part of email etiquette. The sender should double-check before pressing the send button to make sure the email is being sent to the right person. So, when students send emails to their teachers, they should cross-check if they have added the right email address.

  • Length of the email message

    For good readability, emails should be concise and easy to read. If emails are too lengthy, the reader may face issues in understanding the purpose of the email. So, it is advisable that when students write emails to their teachers, they should keep them short and try to fit all the vital information within a few words. Besides, short emails have a good impact as the receiver can decipher them quickly and respond in time.

  • Email forwarding practices

    People need to keep a few things in mind if they are forwarding an email. To begin with, the basic ethic is to remove the other email addresses and comments contained in the series forwards. Secondly, while forwarding an email to someone, a person should evaluate if that email is going to be helpful or beneficial to the recipient. If the email does not contain any important information and will rather act as a time-waster for the recipient, it should be avoided.

  • Replying etiquette

    While sending an email, a person must realize the difference between ‘Reply’ and ‘Reply to all’ buttons. One should figure out if every email address included in the received email needs to receive his reply. So, the person should use the ‘Reply to all’ option with caution and in case the reply is to be sent to only one or two people in the loop, this option should not be used. How a person handles emails and reverts to emails talks a lot about his proficiency in email communication.

  • Usage of active voice

    One of the basic email ethics is to use active voice in your email message as much as possible. The use of active voice in the email gives a better impression than the use of passive voice. To cite an example, “I will submit the assignment today” sounds much better and more positive than “The assignment will be submitted by me today.” Hence, the use of active voice is preferred to passive voice.

After having looked at the various parameters linked to good email etiquette, let us now illustrate the ‘Don’ts’ of effective email communication. There are some things or practices that should be avoided while writing professional emails. Let us have a closer look at these forbidden mistakes.

The Don’ts of good email communication

Here is a quick run-through of what not to do while writing a formal email

  • Do not copy-paste the email message or the attachment of another person without seeking prior permission from them.
  • Do not add irrelevant attachments to your email message
  • Do not include sarcasm or grim jokes in a formal email
  • Do not write the entire text in capital letters as it gives an impression of rudeness
  • Do not add a long introduction to your email as it may make it unattractive for the reader
  • Do not reply to or write an email when you are upset or wrathful. This can have a negative impact on the tone of your email.
  • Do not discuss confidential information in emails
  • Avoid overusing the high priority function

Best practices to adopt while writing an email to your teacher

  • Begin with a formal greeting

    The basic email etiquette while writing to your teacher is to be courteous. Like you respect and greet your teachers in a classroom, you should follow the same in emails too. Sometimes students tend to begin without greetings or they begin with informal greetings like ‘hey’ which are better avoided in a formal email. Remember, when you write an email to your teacher, it should be as formal as possible.

    So how to start an email if not with ‘hi?’ You can begin your email message with ‘dear’ which is a formal greeting. Following this, you wish your teacher good morning or good afternoon subject to time.

    Here is a small example that sheds light on how you can initiate your email message for your teacher.

    Dear Ms. Smith

    Hi

    Good Morning

    So, as you can see, this gives a very aesthetic opening to your email message and the teacher is going to be highly impressed.

  • Proofread the name of the teacher

    Proofread for spellings when you personalize the greetings by adding the name of your teacher. You do not want to spell their name wrong and create a bad impression on them. So, you must know the exact spelling of their full name. Besides, when you personalize the email message by adding the correct spelling of your teacher’s name, your email becomes attractive. Teachers are going to like the little effort you put in addressing them and they would want to revert to such emails on time.

  • Explain the context of your email

    You should always be clear with the context of your email when you write to your teachers. In the subject of the email, you can explain what you are writing the email for. This gives the teacher an idea of what the email concerns and he can understand the urgency of a response by simply reading the subject of the email.

    Besides, not just for email communication with teachers but also for writing emails in general, it is critical to write an appropriate subject. When you add a subject to your mail, you give the reader the information regarding the body of the email. This information is important for them to realize the priority of your email message. So, make it a point to always frame an informative subject for your emails when you submit your assignments or homework.

    For instance, the following is an example of the right way to write the subject of your email.

    To: mirandasmith@example.mail

    From: timmartin@example.mail

    Subject: Doubts Regarding Unit 3 of Molecular Chemistry

  • Let your email be concise

    There is no hard and fast rule regarding the length of your email but it is recommended to keep it short and sweet. So, you should try to keep your email message below 150 words such that teachers can go through it quickly and respond. Otherwise, teachers are going to require more time to read and respond to excessively lengthy email messages.

  • Do not use abbreviations or slangs

    To reiterate, your email to your teacher is a formal written message. Formal communication skills are not inclusive of raw language or slang that you use in daily life with your friends. After all, an email to your teacher is not just another social media chat. Although it should be a cordial email, you need to be professional while writing an email to your teacher. When you use contractions like ‘can’t’ or ‘gonna’ in your email, that is going to create a bad impression on your teachers.

    Remember, your teachers are going to develop an opinion that you are a lazy student who does not care about professionalism. Therefore, when you write an email to your teacher, use only formal language as part of email etiquette. The email should reflect your courtesy, your maturity, and also your sense of communication with teachers or in a formal setting.

  • Express gratitude for your teachers

    All of us like to be at the receiving end of gratitude, don’t we? So, you should be thankful to your teacher for taking out time to read your email. You can include a small expression of gratitude toward the end of the email message.

    For instance, right before closing your email, you can include, “Thank you for your time; I appreciate it”

    This way, you can add a personal touch of respect and appreciation for the teacher. Teachers have very hectic schedules and are always exposed to stress and frustration. A little cordiality from your side or little thanksgiving can bring them immense happiness. Further, this feel-good factor that you create with good ethics is going to encourage your teacher to offer additional support to you.

  • Give a formal closure to your email

    Another important aspect of exhibiting courtesy and respect for teachers is to give your email a formal closure. To do so, send-offs like ‘sincerely’ or ‘best regards’ are the best available formal options. This is another way of extending regards towards the teacher. When a teacher finds all these elements in your email, he is likely to get impressed by your display of respect and professionalism.

    To exemplify,

    Sincerely, Tim Martin

    Or

    Best Regards, Tim Martin

  • Double spell check

    Spellcheck is not only important to proofread the name of the teacher but for the entire content of the email message. When you are writing to your teacher for academic purposes, you should be double sure about spellings. You can also seek help from various internet tools that run your text through free spelling and grammar checks. As cited above, you can use the Grammarly website or even use Google Docs for a spell check.

    Besides spellings, it is also advised to check your email message for punctuation. The right use of punctuation marks can enhance the quality of your email while the opposite can doom the impression.

  • Keep it easy to read

    Very long sentences or complex sentences can impact the readability of your email message. In simplest terms, the readability of your text is the ease with which it can be read. You can avoid making readability too tough and rather keep your sentences short and easy to understand. This can help your teacher to go through your email quickly and then decide on a brisk response.

    On the other hand, if your email is too complex and the teacher finds it difficult to comprehend it, the response can be delayed. Because you realize how hectic it gets for teachers, you should help them to keep things easy and smooth. Thus, try to keep the readability of your email high such that the sentences are easy to read and comprehend. The common factors for easy readability include familiar words, abstract words, percentage of long words, the average length of sentences, percentage of strong verb forms, and so on.

    In the subsequent section, there are some helpful sample emails to give you a clear insight into writing an email to your teacher. Also, if you ever face any difficulties in understanding an academic assignment or have to meet a tight deadline, you can get instant assignment help from us.

Example Emails

Students may have to write emails to their teachers for different purposes. These purposes may include submission of assignments, asking for an extension in the deadline of assignment submission. Besides, students may have to write emails to their teachers to discuss doubts concerning the assignment. It can happen sometimes that your teacher may not be able to revert on time for he has to cater to the doubts of many students. In such a scenario where you face difficulties in your assignment and the teacher is not available, you can use our Premium Assignment Writing Services.

We have a talented pool of academic writers and tutors that can complete your assignments much before the deadline. We focus on quality and timely delivery of your assignments for we understand how crucial they can be for your grades. Besides, we offer a wide spectrum of Academic Writing Services inclusive of thesis writing, coursework writing, and dissertation writing. Also, if you need to submit essays to your teachers and you do not have the time to complete a high-quality essay, trust us with our best in class Essay Writing Help.

Sample Email 1 : Asking the teacher for a deadline extension through an email

Sometimes, students may find it hard to manage piles of assignments and tight deadlines. In such a scenario, students will either run through the assignments caring a little about quality or they will spend sleepless nights to meet ends. So, a better idea can be to seek an extension from the professor if a student feels that his professor is kind enough to oblige. But even if a student decides to do so, a student may struggle with the ideas to incorporate in the email message seeking an extension.

This is how a student can write an email to a teacher for seeking an extension

Subject: Request for extension in the submission of semester II psychology assignment


Dear Ms. Smith

Good Afternoon

I am finding it a little hard to find relevant research pertinent to my psychology term paper given the complexity of the topic. To submit the best possible paper, I could use a little more time to go through the various publications linked to the topic thoroughly. In case possible, please allow an extension in the deadline by two more days. Following this extension, I assure you that I will submit my term paper without any further delay.

It will be very kind of you to allow me the same and if you want, I can meet you in your office during the working hours to explain my reasons for seeking an extension. Thank you for your time

Sincerely,

Tim Martin

Note: In addition to this guide on how to write an effective email to your teacher, you can also find guides on how to write a career goals essay, how to do homework fast, and so on. Also, if you seek help with the completion of your academic essays, you can go through the list of our sample essays to glance at the quality of our academic writings.

Sample Email 2 : Writing an email to the professor for help

Asking for help is a very normal thing and in fact, teachers should encourage students to ask for help. Most of the teachers are happy to extend help to students because teachers are lovely people, to say the least. Despite that, at times, students are reluctant to seek help from their professors. This usually happens when students are not sure about their email communication skills. But life will be much easier for students if they know how to seek help from their teachers through emails.

This is how a student can write an email to a professor for help

Subject: Request for clarification on questions included in semester III nanotechnology assignment


Dear Mr. Watson

Good Evening

I am facing issues in understanding the assignment on nanotechnology that has been prepared by you. With due respect, I seek a little help from you to understand the questions included in the third section of the assignment. While I have completed the first two sections, I have some doubts in the third part. If you could explain these questions with a bit more clarity, I could start working on the third section of the assignment.

In case you want me to pay a personal visit to your office for the same, please allot me a time slot for the same. It is going to be very generous of you to help my cause. Thank you for your valuable time.

Best Regards

Emily Warner

Sample Email 3 : Writing an email to a teacher about an assignment

When students are submitting their assignments to the teacher, they may find it difficult to compose the email message. This is because students may be unsure as to how they can write a formal email to the professor. But if students do not add text to the body of the email and simply send an email with the attachment, it may seem unprofessional. So, it is imperative that students should know how to compose emails while submitting assignments.

This is how a student can compose an email for the teacher to submit an assignment

Subject: Submission of the semester I political science assignment


Dear Ms. Rose

A very good afternoon

This is to inform you that I have completed my political science assignment that you had assigned to the class last week. I am attaching the PDF file of the completed assignment in this email. I express gratitude for your generous guidance and effort in making this assignment for us.

Also, please feel free to suggest any changes in the assignment or to share any feedback related to it.

Sincerely,

Ben Warne

To encapsulate, writing an email to a teacher requires formal writing skills as well as time management skills. Students should maintain the difference between writing an email to a friend and writing a formal email to a teacher. In these times of virtual learning, emails will play a vital role in acting as a communication bridge between you and your teachers. When you follow the above practices for writing an email to a teacher, you can impress the teacher with your professionalism and sincerity. Besides, the above guidelines will ensure that the conversation remains clear, transparent, and free from misunderstandings or misinterpretations.

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