Sample emails to your dissertation supervisor

Sending good emails to your supervisor can sometimes be a challenge. We have created sample emails for different situations that you can use when writing to him or her.

Making an appointment

Dear Dr. Janssen,

The college has informed me that you will be my supervisor. I would therefore like to make an initial appointment to discuss my dissertation idea with you.

I look forward to hearing from you as to when you would be available to meet with me.


Bas Swaen

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Asking questions

Dear Prof. Smith,

I have encountered several difficulties while working on my dissertation. Could you please answer the following questions?

  • I have found only limited literature on the concept of “social enforcement.” Are you familiar with any authors who have written on this topic?
  • Measuring “social enforcement” in the literature has proven virtually impossible. At this point I would like to use “social control” as a starting point for the concept. What are your thoughts on this?

I would like to make an appointment to discuss these questions with you. When would be convenient for you?


Bas Swaen

Confirming agreements

Dear Dr. Janssen,

I am writing in follow-up to our meeting on Monday. Could you please check the notes I have prepared concerning what we agreed and confirm that they are accurate?

Thanks in advance for your response.


Bas Swaen

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Sarah Vinz

Sarah's academic background includes a Master of Arts in English, a Master of International Affairs degree, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. She loves the challenge of finding the perfect formulation or wording and derives much satisfaction from helping students take their academic writing up a notch.