232

To me, this is such a non-issue that it doesn't warrant much of a response. So let me add a response :) I didn't mean to imply carelessness, and I am sorry if that's how my email came across. I was a bit overzealous in my email. I will address the errors in the skeleton program in my solution, as you have indicated. Thank you for your detailed response! ...


168

Back when this was something I had to deal with, I would: Always have something to do if someone doesn't show up for their appointment, or if their question gets resolved very quickly. Write brief emails to no-shows along the lines of Dear X: I'm following up on our appointment today at 14:00. I hope everything is OK with you. Let me know if your question ...


167

There is nothing inappropriate (that anyone can see here) in the way that you've written your email. The response from the professor suggests that they're some combination of (a) incredibly time-constrained, (b) sloppy and unclear in how they communicate, and (c) a jerk. It's possible (as user2768 suggests) that the essential "offense" in their ...


160

In my opinion, you should take this seriously. What you are observing is bullying. The students that are asking questions, and trying to participate, need to know that you have their back. For example, during class, as soon as students start laughing: "Excuse me, X was asking a question." "Please be respectful of other students." After ...


133

At every (US) institution I've attended or worked at, there's been an official school-wide policy that students are expected to check their school email regularly, and that sending official communications there constitutes sufficient notification. So check your school's policies; if you have such a policy, then it's certainly appropriate to remind students ...


117

A 5-paragraph email with citations for a possible mistake in an undergraduate exercise sounds, if anything, patronizing. Apologize and move on.


116

I think that your plan is based on number of possibly wrong premises. And even if they were mostly right, I doubt such a plan could have any reasonable success. Let's see my reasons. I just had a lecture from someone who has been a senior scientist (and has completed a PhD, post-doc) at a hospital for already 15 years.So I'm assuming this person is ...


112

How could I tell him to upgrade my grade and explain to him that I really deserve it and that I really need to have (19/20) so I can pass my semester? Don't tell him how to fix the error, and don't open with this being a make-or-break for passing your semester. This will probably put him on the defensive, and make him less likely to be sympathetic. In fact, ...


112

No, asking reasonable questions won't damage your reputation -- and even a few unreasonable ones won't do any real damage, especially as a young grad student. Still, I recommend that you start by asking your advisor, or someone else at your host institution, rather than jumping straight to asking this expert. If this is a basic result that everyone in your ...


106

My sense is that the vast majority would not notice one way or another but that some potential advisors might and would find it intrusive and and inappropriate. In many other cases, (like myself) professors use text-based email clients or systems that that block this kind of tracking. In these cases, folks won't think you're rude but you still won't know if ...


104

Beyond a certain point in their careers, academics (in particular tenured professors) are essentially a subspecies of managers. And managers literally receive hundreds of emails per day. Some of these indeed require a more formal response, or a lot of work before you can even compose an answer. If you get 20 emails that each require half an hour of work, 50 ...


104

More years ago than I care to remember, I changed departments and started working for a new manager (NM). At the same time, another person (AP) also joined the department. My new manager put a weekly meeting on our calendars for the three of us. We would go into the meeting, and NM would start asking us what seemed to me to be really simple questions - what ...


102

As an instructor, the best you can do is to offer your condolences and tell him to just ask you if he needs anything. For example, you could offer an extension on assignments. If he needs some time off from lectures, maybe a classmate who takes good lecture notes will agree to make a photocopy, or you could get the lectures to be recorded for him. Your ...


101

Yes, it is appropriate to ask the questioner to repeat the question, prefaced by: "I'm sorry but I didn't understand the question. Can you repeat it or rephrase it?" If you still don't understand it, you might ask someone else in the audience to restate it or rephrase it. Some people at academic conferences are not good at asking clear, direct ...


99

If your colleagues in the department—presumably also PhD students—don't understand the concept, either, it doesn't strike me that the question is truly "basic." That said, if your advisor is aware of your background, then he should know that there will be some things that might not be "obvious" to you. Now, in this case, you have already "done your ...


98

For a one-off or short-term rudeness, my policy is to respond with pure facts, served chilled. If you have a good instinct for delivering comebacks at just the right level, a hint (but just a hint) of sarcasm might work wonders. Manners are important, but it's not our job to teach the students manners - and they are rarely grateful for it, especially those ...


98

Your language isn't the problem, your email is well-written, but you've seemingly wasted the professor's time. You could have looked up the information, as they have explained: You may see course content on the department webpage. Comments suggest I'm ignoring the professor's words: you must know how to address them appropriately The word address can mean ...


97

Is hello acceptable, or should it be more formal (with or without academic titles)? This is a matter of (sub-)culture. Once you know what to expect, you can effectively communicate. This style is minimalist, but it tells you everything you need to know. If this bothers you, think of it this way: MK is not only saving their time, but they are also saving ...


95

Instead of a question that might be insulting, you should probably ask them what they've been working on for the past few years. You need to know that in any case and their answer might give you the reason that they haven't got anything out recently. There may be a lot of work in progress but not yet ready. That sort of thing can actually be an advantage to ...


93

This is unethical and unprofessional. It is simply none of your business. You are not in a position to evaluate the student. Writing to his supervisor will make you look bad. It is an insult to his supervisor. The Ph.D. degree can not be awarded to someone incompetent. If this happens, it is going to be shown sooner or later. Let future employers and ...


93

Hierarchy beats Gender in Germany In a professional context in Germany, hierarchy beats gender, at least according to the Knigge, which is an etiquette guide of nontrivial influence. This goes as far as to be gender-blind. Only rank is important. So you would address the highest ranking person first, in this case, your professor.


87

It doesn't mean anything, it's just a pleasant remark. When you are accepted or rejected for the job, you will be notified formally, not by vague remarks at the end of an interview. In the meantime, keep applying and interviewing for other opportunities that interest you.


85

Go talk to the Dean prior to the meeting, and resist the urge to "reply all" to any mail that might be even remotely contentious. Email and text messages are good for exchanging facts, such as the time of the meeting. They are much less good for dealing with disagreement or even potential disagreement.


83

No, "shouting" in an email isn't "normal". And, yes, it might imply disrespect. But I think that, given everything else you say, it is more likely that it indicates extreme PANIC on the part of the student (sorry for shouting there). But fear can cause people to act badly. Don't overreact without more evidence.


83

First, I think it may be useful to note that in academic collaborations where folks haven't met in person, misgendering often happens even to people who are not trans, due to ambiguity and cultural differences (e.g., "Jean", "Kinjal", "Xue Yi"). As such, you don't even need to bring up your trans status if you don't want to: ...


82

"You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do" --- Eleanor Roosevelt. You can relax; for experienced academics, the baseline expectation is that most new graduate students (including ourselves at that age) are/were basically incompetent. That is the reason we give you 4-5 years of training before we ...


78

Professors are people too. There are generally no magic words or special formulas for talking to professors. That said, it is understandable that people often feel very nervous in communicating with professors because how the professor responds can sometimes have a big impact on your future. Here are some ideas about what works well. Make your ...


78

Keep it short and sweet: Dear [her name], Thanks for the reminder about our project. I thought about it some more, and for personal reasons I won’t be able to continue with the work. Since you have all the data I suggest that you pursue publication by yourself or with other collaborators. And, if it matters, I do not care very much about the issue of ...


77

From my perspective of working in multiple European universities in different countries: In a "closed" conversation setting, it will exclusively depend on the people involved in the conversation. The prime requirement is to use a language that every participant understands and speaks. A secondary concern is to use a language that people are ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible