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Contacting professors for PhD in the United States

Marwan Shalaby

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Hello there, 


I am thinking of applying to several top schools in the United States for my PhD. Now, I have seen everywhere applicants approaching professors early on in the application process. 

In the universities I am applying to, the admission decision is made by a committee and then the matching with the supervisor occurs later on. Does that mean that it is still preferable that I would contact the professors that I am interested to work with? 


Also, is there a specific time on which is it preferable to start contacting the professors?


Thank a lot in advance for your help.



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Probably the best way to approach professors is having studied their research and suggesting some contributions to their work, not too involved, but that at least show your interest and potential.


E-mails that are too generic are usually ignored. Even though the committee makes the decisions, individual professors are usually consulted about their preferences.


I really don't think there's such thing as a "good" time to write to professors, as long as you don't do it too late into the application process. 



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