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I had a PhD interview two weeks ago (engineering program). Near the end of the meeting, the interviewer (a professor) told me if I have further questions I could get in touch with him through email. Due to limited time, I didn't ask about the research he is currently working on. I have read some papers published in his group and am interested in his research, would that be appropriate for me to follow up with an email and ask a few questions about that, before they make the decision?

(An additional question) Also, normally after a PhD interview, would the professor expect me to get in touch with them and confirm my passion for their program?

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Sure thing, it is entirely fine to ask what projects could you expect to be involved in, and it is not just academia-specific.

It would be better if you came up with specific questions - at very least, mentioning that you have read the papers and are familiar with the research direction in general but would like more details is a good thing to do.

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