There are an estimated 4.2 million email users worldwide and, according to Statista, that number is constantly growing.
As email users are increasing, email etiquette is decreasing. Email has many purposes, like communicating with supervisors and professors, staying up-to-date with campus events, applying for scholarships and jobs but the only way to receive that information is to read emails.
Etiquette can be known as the code of polite behavior, and the first rule in email etiquette is checking and reading them. The second rule is using a professional email, introducing yourself and using the recipient’s correct title.
Email is a form of formal communication in comparison to texting and direct messaging on Instagram. Professors have between 45 and 150 students and won’t recognize the email from “firstname.lastname@example.org” with no clear subject line.
The third rule is reading your email for punctuation, grammar and spelling issues. Not only because college students should proofread everything they write, but it’s difficult to read tone via email. If it sounds rude out loud, there is a chance it will sound rude to professors. Like tone, jokes might get lost in translation.
The fourth rule is responding, especially if the sender is expecting a response. Responding to emails even if they were mistakenly sent so the sender can send it to the correct person serves as polite email etiquette. There is no reasoning behind this, it is just having manners.
The fifth rule is allowing the recipient time to respond. Both professors and students have busy schedules so allowing 24-hours for a response before sending additional emails is being considerate of the person’s time, but if it is important then it should be included in the subject line.
Don’t expect a response from a professor at 1:50 a.m. and don’t send an email at that time anyway. I’m sure students would be unappreciative of their phone going off before they have to wake up so email during business hours.
If professors want students to respond to their email over the weekend then professors should respond over the weekend too, especially if assignments are due over the weekend.