No response from Professor; how should I remind him about writing a recommendation for me?

  • I'm applying to a BS/MS program and I'm gathering recommendations. I'm an international student from China and I was transferred to my current college last year.

    Two weeks ago, I went to see my professor during his office hours to ask if he could write me a recommendation letter. He agreed and told me to email him.

    I sent my request a week later and it was just a general email asking for recommendation (without mentioning when I'd visited him).

    I still haven't got a response from that professor. It's possible that the professor didn't recognize me in the email, since I sent that only one week after going to his office.

    Should I leave him a reminder in a follow-up email? Or should I do so in person?

    If you're on campus, stopping by might not be a bad idea. It indicates that you believe the letter is important enough for you to ask him about the update.

    If the professor didn't recognize you *from the name you signed at the bottom of your email*, what makes you (or him, for that matter!) think he is able to write you a recommendation letter? How does he know you - in what capacity have you worked with him?

    I approved and slightly edited a suggested edit on this. But why would someone edit it 2 1/2 years after the original post? And why isn't that more obvious in the review process?

    @FredDouglis I'm very sorry. I'd noticed the date of this question, but the question was so full of waffles and unnecessary details, that I thought editing it would be a good idea.

    @SohaFarhinPine no problem, I wouldn't care except that by being last to edit, it made it look like I was the one who resurrected it. But I don't see much point....

    @FredDouglis Nobody actually cares for such petty things...

  • I would send an email along these lines (taken from Cindy Au on Quora):

    Dear Professor [Professor's name],

    The deadline for submitting letter of recommendation for [name of program/ fellowship] is quickly approaching. I would like to inquire if there is still any document I can supply to make your writing easier in addition to what we discussed during office hours 2 weeks ago.

    I understand that this is a very hectic time in the school year and thus can't thank you enough for your time and support.

    Respectfully yours,

    [Your name + ideally a link to some website containing your photo]

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Content dated before 6/26/2020 9:53 AM