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Things to avoid while approaching professors

Approaching a professor is a great idea if you want to receive help with your  PHD. But you have to realize that there are some things to avoid when you want to approach a professor. Here are some of the things to keep in mind, things that you should not do!

  • Avoid asking for financial aid in the first message you send. That first message is to identify if the professor has an RA position. You don’t want to ask for financial aid there.

  • Make sure that you don’t ask information about your GPA, GRE score, etc. These tests have no influence in the overall admission experience and they will not show that much about you.

  • The first mail should be short, less than 60 lines of text. Just make sure that you are concise and to the point to get the very best experience and results.

  • Speaking about how much of a hard worker a creative person you are doesn’t help at all. You have to create the right content, as the message will speak for itself. Telling the same about the professor won’t help either. So, try to be truthful and state exactly what has to be said without sharing too much information.

  • Stating various generic statements is not ok at all. You may want to make sure that you show your true interest in the topic with a specific statement

  • Avoid using attachments in the email. You can use an URL that the professor can visit and integrate all the stuff you want there.

  • It’s important not to use the HTML encoded emails or any type of non-standard character sets.

  • Stay away from the fancy formatting or anything like that. You want to stand out with the stuff you write, not the formatting.

  • Keep in mind that sending emails more than once is not going to be ok at all. Wait for a message and take your time with this. It’s going to be incredible in the end and results can be more than ok if you just wait.

  • Avoid adding your address and other pivotal details in the signature, just add your name.,

  • Stick to being professional; don’t use a common way to approach people.

  • Avoid any grammar issues, so try to double-check your content as much as you can.

  • Don’t use templates, if the professors see a generic message that goes right to trash.

  • You shouldn’t include marks in the mail, but you can integrate them in the resume.

  • Avoid including irrelevant personal problems and experiences in your email

  • Stay away from any funding requests in the first message.

These are all things you want to avoid when you approach a professor. Make sure that you step away from any potential mistakes and proofread your content as often as possible. After all, you are only going to send the email once, so you might as well do it properly from the start. It’s certainly going to work a lot better with this approach!

To know more about prof-letting or proofing, click here.

To know more about how to approach professors, click here.