Tips for Emailing Professors

The subject line: Be as specific as possible. You might include your name, student status, and ‘research opportunities’. You might use the subject to ask about a specific time frame. Such as “Are you available the week of 10/1 to discuss undergraduate research opportunities?”

Salutation: Your email should be professional and use either “Dear Dr. Xxx” or “Dear Professor Xxx”.

Body: The first email should be brief, about 7-12 sentences. The structure should consist of three main parts: 1) Who you are and your goals, 2) State your interest in the professor’s research and how research in this field (or research in general) relates to your goals, 3) Ask to schedule a meeting.

Closing: Be sure to thank professors for their time and use “Sincerely” for the closing


Find additional email tips click here.


Example Email

Subject: Student in Biology interested in Research Opportunities

Dear Dr. Xxx

I am a second-year biology student and I am very interested in becoming involved in research in ecosystem ecology. I have reviewed your faculty profile and I am interested in your work. I am particularly interested in your work with nitrogen cycling in grasslands. I would like to get involved in this area of research because it will help be prepare for pursuing a graduate degree in grassland ecology.

I would appreciate the chance talk with you about your research and about possible research opportunities in your lab. Thank you for your time. I look forward to hearing from you!