Email Guidelines for Graduate Students

In an increasingly connected society, it is important for students to maintain professionalism in all communications with faculty members, advisers, colleagues, and other professionals. Please follow the guidelines below when you are constructing professional and academic emails from your NYU email account:


  • Begin your email with a salutation. If you are emailing a faculty member, you should address your email “Dear Professor [name here]”.
  • Close your email with a signature. Please note that this is different from your email signature that is included in every message.
  • Include a meaningful subject line.
  • Make sure to read your NYU email regularly. You will receive many important emails from the department and from the school, including instructions for registration, graduation dates, financial aid notices, important events and requirements, and more.
  • Make sure your emails are written as concisely as possible, while still adhering to proper grammar and sentence structure.
  • When writing longer emails, use spaced paragraphs, and/or organize your email using lists or numbering.
  • Read over your email before sending to make sure there are no errors. Ensure that the correct person is placed in the “To” field.

Do not:

  • Use slang, inappropriate language, emoticons, or texting abbreviations.
  • Use excessive capitalization, underlining, or bolding. These elements will change the tone of your email, and may make the email sound as if you are shouting or reprimanding the recipient.
  • Unsubscribe from your program’s list serv(s). You will miss out on important information.

Other resources:

General email writing guidelines

General email etiquette

Email etiquette for students 

Job hunting and email etiquette

Email guidelines for the job search