Talking to or emailing a professor....

<p>I haven't been able to visit a school I am interested in, so I was thinking of contacting a professor there (so, I can at least show that I do care about the school), but I'm not exactly sure how to do it. Sending an email would be the best, but I don't know what to say exactly....</p>

<p>Can anyone give me some advice on what to ask (that can't be found on the website)?</p>

<p>Don't bother. Most schools don't factor demonstrated interest. The ones that do aren't going to be tracking a random e-mail to a random professor. You'll be wasting your and the professor's time.</p>

<p>Try to see this from the Professor's point-of-view. Your question can't just satisfy you (for the sake of admissions), it has to be something that you're really interested in. They don't want questions from a HS senior, especially when you approach this as "I just want to show I'm interested in your school." They're too busy for that! </p>

<p>Your question, if you actually ask it, should be a legitimate one, nothing generic or contrived. And you need to show you've done your homework, that you're really know enough of what you're talking about to ask it.</p>

<p>Ask them how to get into their school.</p>

<p>What limabeans says is great advice. I've been contacting college professors for a high school research project and was surprised at how many got back to me. You could ask them a question about something you're interested in that pertains to their areas of teaching, and perhaps ask about the programs that they offer there (that isn't obviously stated on the website). Make it personal, and use correct grammar and proper writing skills.</p>

<p>But don't bother asking them questions just to look good to admissions. Not only will you be wasting your time since it's unlikely the professors will let admissions know about your contact, but you'll also be irritating the professors because it's usually very obvious when someone is asking questions to look good instead of out of interest. For instance, students who are asking questions out of interest don't have to ask Internet strangers about what to ask.</p>

<p>Uh...I just meant it so that I have something to back up my reason for Why ______ besides the fact that I like blah major there. I'm not looking to...get the professors to help me get in or something (is that even possible?).</p>

<p>If you have an actual question, such as "do undergraduates get the opportunity to do research", "does your department have an office that facilitates summer internships", or "what do your graduates do after they graduate", then send an e-mail to the undergraduate program director of the department you are interested in. All majors have an undergrad. director; sometimes it is a regular faculty member, sometimes it is an adjunct. In any case, it is usually someone who has an interest in undergraduates and their questions.</p>

<p>But don't send a note that is general and constitutes a waste of a faculty member's time.</p>

<p>EDIT: To find out who is the undergraduate program director, look at the web site's listing of faculty by department.</p>