Visiting a school in the US with an F1 visa and contacting your professor

Visiting a school in the US with an F1 visa and contacting your professor

Some F1 students have a hard time connecting with this person, and sometimes this is partly because they don’t pay attention to some basic aspects that guide good communication. Here are some tips for contacting your professor via email. Following them will help reduce miscommunication.

Fill in the subject

Don’t forget to fill in the subject line of the email. You do this for several reasons. First, an email without a subject line may simply go to the professor’s spam folder. Also, an email without a subject line looks unimportant and sometimes suspicious. Without a header, this email can be ignored, unread, and trashed.

If you are applying for a scholarship or other type of aid, this is the topic. If you’re going to be the professor’s assistant, this is the topic. If you are going to be their research assistant, this is the topic. Keep the email subject short, clear and recognizable.

Use clear language and good grammar

Some students began texting professors the way they would text someone on their phone. Do not do this. Use a proper salutation, such as “Dear Professor Smith.” Once you get to the body of the email, be sure to use paragraphs and complete sentences and words within those paragraphs.

If your English is not very good, then get help writing the letter and ask someone to read it before you send it. By the way, don’t create the letter in the email. First, use a typing program, proofread and spell check it, and then insert it into the email. You can also attach it to the email, but make sure you also put the text of your letter in the body of the email. The attachment may not open or may be skipped entirely.

Explain who you are

Most professors receive many messages from many students. To avoid confusion, you should explain who you are and your relationship to the person you are writing to. Don’t go on forever. Say enough so that the person reading it understands your relationship with them.

Ask questions clearly and concisely

If you have questions, then go to the point and ask them. It’s a good idea to use bullet points to separate each question. They make your questions easier to read and they will grab the reader’s attention.

Provide them with contact information

Provide the professor with your contact information. If you use an instant messenger or something similar to SKYPE, be sure to include your online name or address. Of course they will have your email address, but giving them a few choices if they need to contact you can be helpful and can save time. It also tells them that you want to communicate with them. This is usually taken as a good sign by the professor.

Finally, if after two weeks the professor hasn’t responded, you might write a polite email asking if they received your first email. Sometimes emails get lost, trashed, or simply forgotten.

When applying for an F1 visa, you need to make sure that you follow all the steps correctly.

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