For some reasosns, I needed to email our professor in the name of the whole class as class representative. When I got the reply, I had to check if everyone in the class was OK with it. This has some time, about a week. Do I need to apologize for the late reply and explain this? Or do I just reply without minding it?

1 Answer 1


A week is very reasonable for a reply by email [*]. There is no need to apologise.

It may be useful to explain that everyone in the class agrees to "the thing". Most professors would be able to deduce from that information that you have consulted them and that this took some time. This is the second reason you do not need to apologise.

[*] obviously this depends on the urgency of the matter, but in general replying within a week is considered "fast".

  • 3
    However, including a polite apology doesn't hurt: "I apologise for not sending this message earlier, but I had to wait for agreement from all class mates."
    – user9482
    Feb 21, 2022 at 8:57
  • 1
    Apologising too much or too early usually indicates insecurity. Many professors and teachers prefer to see professional, independent students. Sincere apologies are always good, but "political" apologies are often worse than no apologies, when none are necessary. This may strongly depend on the culture. But no one expects apologies about a late reply when the reply is actually early by most people's standards.
    – Louic
    Feb 21, 2022 at 9:55
  • 1
    There is a cultural aspect. In my experience, you should err towards more politeness and formality in India.
    – user9482
    Feb 21, 2022 at 10:59
  • I would not generalize the expectations like so. It sounds pretty unreasonable to ask a question pertinent to the next week's class only to receive an email with the response at 8am the very same day that class takes place.
    – Lodinn
    Feb 22, 2022 at 11:28
  • @Lodinn If the situation you describe was what happened, OP should not have left out that essential information. My reading of this question is therefore that this is not an urgent matter, and the footnote to my answer clearly states that it does not apply to urgent matters.
    – Louic
    Feb 22, 2022 at 13:05

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