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Approach to contacting Research supervisor


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What is the best way to approach a potential research supervisor? During undergrad, I would spend some time reading up on the supervisor's research and include a few lines in my email indicating my interest in that particular project. However, people have told me this approach is not the most efficient. I will spend hours reading about research that I will not be contributing to further before I am able to find a supervisor. Would it be appropriate to email a supervisor asking if they have any research projects available for students before I spend time reading about their work further? Or would this come across as ingenuine? 

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31 minutes ago, chilli said:

What is the best way to approach a potential research supervisor? During undergrad, I would spend some time reading up on the supervisor's research and include a few lines in my email indicating my interest in that particular project. However, people have told me this approach is not the most efficient. I will spend hours reading about research that I will not be contributing to further before I am able to find a supervisor. Would it be appropriate to email a supervisor asking if they have any research projects available for students before I spend time reading about their work further? Or would this come across as ingenuine? 

It can come across as ingenuine. But also really increases the risk that you end up going back and forth talking to them about a project you have zero interest in. Or worse, end up working on something you didn’t realize you have no interest in. That’s just as much a waste of your time and everyone else’s, potentially more so. 

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