Follow-up and reminder emails to professors can seem intimidating to write; you need an answer to a question or request, but you don’t want to seem pushy or demanding. Well, just like yours, professors’ inboxes are full of email; sometimes your message might slip through the cracks, or the professor read it and meant to reply, but something urgent came up–so gentle reminders are perfectly acceptable and even helpful. As a general rule of thumb, wait at least 48 hours to send a follow-up to a professor, and if you email on a Friday afternoon or weekend, wait until at least Tuesday afternoon before reaching out again.
Subject: Follow-up about [Reason for Follow -up]
Good afternoon Professor* [Last name],
I hope all is well. I wanted to follow up on my email from [when you sent it] about [what your concern or question is]. I understand you have a busy schedule, but I wanted to see about [whatever you are following up on].
I greatly appreciate your time. Thank you again in advance for your help with [question]. I look forward to hearing from you soon!
Subject: Reminder about [Reason for Reminder]
Good morning Professor* [Last name],
I hope all is well. I know you have lots of things going on, but I just wanted to remind you that [whatever you are reminding of] is due/needed by [date]. Thank you again for taking time to complete [request]. Please let me know if you have any questions or need additional information.
Thank you again!
*Use the title they use for themselves. If they haven’t specified, “Professor [Last Name]” is preferred.