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Nico Corr

How does one go about "cold-emailing" professors at prospective schools?

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I went to a grad school info session for a program in International Relations last week, and everyone attending was encouraged to "cold-call and email" prospective professors. We were told they love to get queries from prospective students. I'd like to do this, but I'm not sure which specific professor to contact, exactly what I should say or what kind of response I should expect to get. Is it okay to contact more than 1 professor at the same school? Does it matter specifically what concentration they are in? Will it necessarily translate into an improved probability of getting in?

Edited by Nico Corr

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Only contact them if you have a specific question to ask. And since you'll need a specific question, it probably makes sense to contact someone with whom you share research or other professional interests. Yes, you can contact more than one professor at the same school. No, a simple cold-call email isn't going to increase your chance of getting in.

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7 hours ago, rising_star said:

Only contact them if you have a specific question to ask. And since you'll need a specific question, it probably makes sense to contact someone with whom you share research or other professional interests. Yes, you can contact more than one professor at the same school. No, a simple cold-call email isn't going to increase your chance of getting in.

Thanks, this was helpful. I've pinpointed 2 professors who seem to have similar research interests as myself. I'll come up with some thoughtful questions to ask them.

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Interested in what people have to say about this. If I were a professor, I would not want to feel as if someone were e-mailing me just to increase their chances of getting in. 

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