I emailed my potential supervisor to express my interest in her works. We talked once and I was encouraged to apply to the university. Recently, I emailed her to inform her that I have submitted my application. I got a response from my potential supervisor that I am admitted. How should I thank her for admitting me?

Also, one of my recommendation letters is not submitted yet. Does that mean I am definitely admitted? Because I have to ask about financial aid and scholarships and I have no idea when or how to do so...

  • When you say "thank her for admitting me", do you think it was her sole decision? In many departments, such decisions are made by a committee; your potential supervisor may not have been involved in this decision at all. Dec 22, 2016 at 22:56
  • yes, i think it was her sole decision. As i said, I emailed her to get her attention before applying and I was accepted before my application was fully completed. Also I was informed about by my (hopefully) future supervisor herself. That's why i want to thank her.
    – Mahsa
    Dec 23, 2016 at 6:21
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    "yes, i think it was her sole decision." Don't just base on your guess. It's very strange that it's all done by one person and your application was not even complete. You can still write and thank for the good news, and ask when you should expect the formal notice from the university admission office (all questions on scholarship/aids should go to them anyway). Until then better to stay put. You can also check your application status with the admission office independently. Dec 23, 2016 at 16:54
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    Thank her by doing a good job :-) Jan 6, 2017 at 15:33

2 Answers 2


How should I thank her for admitting me?

Just like you would phrase any other similar email, within or outside of academia. There is no need to overthink this. There is no specific protocol for that, and no need for a special "thank you" email (although an answer that acknowledges that you have received the mail and are still interested in the position is definitely advisable).

Dear XXX,

I am very happy to hear this, and I am looking forward to working with you.

Can you please advise me on what the next steps for me are?

All the best, Mahsa Gamiji

As a quick sidenote to all those expressing disbelief that a single professor may have decided to accept or reject a PhD candidate: This is how it works in most places in Europe. Don't assume that admission to PhD school is organized the same as in the US everywhere.


You won't know for sure whether it was her sole decision. Even if she has a major role in the process, she probably had to influence other people in her department. Be polite and write how grateful you are to be accepted in that institution, and how eager you are to start working with her. You won'd be mistaken.

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