How to Thank Your Favourite Professor


A great professor will have a lasting impact on your time at university, perhaps even the rest of your life. However, many professors may never know how important they’ve been to their students. You can change this by thanking your favourite professor through a formal email that expresses your gratitude — here’s how.

1. Sum Up Your Thoughts in a Short Subject Line

Make sure your professor knows what the email is about by including a relevant subject line. Professors are busy people — knowing what an email contains helps them decide when to read it.

2. Address Your Professor Correctly

Find out what title your professor prefers. If the professor has a doctoral degree, this is likely “Professor” or “Doctor.” Otherwise, it will likely be “Mr.” or “Ms.” However, you may be on a first-name basis with your professor if you’ve developed a close relationship.

3. Write a Personalized Message

Make it clear exactly what you’re thankful for, whether that’s guidance, mentorship, or a particular opportunity your professor provided you with. Avoid writing a generic message — instead, include specific examples of how the professor has supported you. This will show that you’re genuine about your appreciation.

4. Talk About the Future

You may also like to talk about how the support you received from your professor has influenced your future career path or further studies. If your professor could be a useful contact, you may like to express a desire to stay in touch.

5. Be Brief

The last thing you want is for your thank-you email to take up an unreasonable amount of your professor’s time. Instead of going into a lot of detail, stick to the key facts to be as concise as possible. A maximum of six short paragraphs is ideal.

6. Sign Off Appropriately

End with the professional closing phrase of your choice. Options range from the standard “Sincerely” or “Kind regards” to those that continue expressing thanks, such as “With appreciation” or “Yours in gratitude.”

7. Proofread Before Sending

Just like you proofread papers and other assignments before you submit them, you should proofread your thank-you email. In fact, it’s a good habit to proofread anything you write before sending it, no matter how. Since you put a lot of effort into writing the perfect thank-you email, it’s important to check it to ensure it expresses your thoughts as you wanted and has no errors that may look unprofessional or may lead to a misunderstanding.

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