Memo to Evan Crisp – Joyce Wu


To:               Evan Crisp, UBC Student 
From:         Joyce Wu, ENGL 301 Student
Date:           November 22, 2019
Subject:     Best Practices in Writing an Email to Professor

Thank you for sharing your concerns and reaching out for advice. The following tips are useful for composing effective email correspondences to professors and are listed here for your reference. 

Best practices for writing successful emails to professors:

  • Including a concise and meaningful subject line to help inform and persuade busy professors to open and read the email content. 
  • Identifying yourself and your needs clearly for professors to provide adequate support in your favour. Some common information professors look for when they receive email requests from students are student name, student number, course number, section number and type of request. Requests with strong rationale are desired.   
  • Using formal language with proper email etiquette not only shows respect and appreciation for the professor’s time and support but also makes the email message more professional.
  • Being mindful of the tone and writing from the professor’s point of view to minimize misinterpretation due to missing vocal cues, facial expression and body language.  
  • Double checking the preferred email address for correspondence and accuracy of recipient’s email address. Some professors prefer to receive emails from academic and professional email addresses. 
  • Including contact information in the closing paragraph or have the information in a signature block.

Email is a valuable tool and is used for many purposes. Applying these tips when composing an email to the professor can increase the likelihood of getting the results you want. If you have any questions, please email me at

Best Regards, 

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