What is the best way to schedule an office hour appointment with big-name professor?

  1. Directly email him.
  2. Email his secretary, asking for an appointment.
  3. Talk in person causally first and ask his preference (if possible).

I am in a school where some professors do not have a regular office hour, and occasionally, my email is ignored (or replied three weeks later) even if the email is short. Almost all of them have a secretary, who knows the professor’s schedule completely.

  • 4
    Then contact the secretary, she might get you an appointment or forward your email or ask said professor.
    – Mark
    Commented Oct 17, 2017 at 21:59
  • 1
    Should be similar as for a small-name professor.
    – Cape Code
    Commented Oct 18, 2017 at 12:34
  • @CapeCode Not so much. There will be administrative staff for the entire department, but in most departments only Important People get their own admin support who would know their calendars. Commented Oct 18, 2017 at 16:18

1 Answer 1


By all means, contact the admin assistant and be extra super nice and polite because they have more power than you might think. Even if they don't schedule appointments, they'll know the best way to reach him.

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