Majority Of College Students Recommend Talking To Professors Before Attending

February 18, 2016



College tour season is just around the corner, and AdmitSee knows both parents and high school juniors must have a lot of questions. While university-run campus tours can be helpful, we have found that the majority of students think speaking to professors at their perspective colleges is a far more valuable experience. See why these successful college students highly recommend taking the time to schedule appointments with professors on your college tour!

EmmaKS9118 (Miami University - Oxford ‘19): When you make campus visits, send emails a few weeks ahead of time to the heads of your future major’s departments and introduce yourself. Ask for a meeting with them or another member of their department on the day of your visit. Get to know the professors you may be taking classes from and ask questions to get a better feel for what makes their program special, unique, successful, et cetera. For example, ask about class sizes, the angle the program takes on the subject, whether there are special internships or other enrichment opportunities, where recent alumni have gotten jobs or attended grad school. A lot of this information can be found online, sure, but it’s so much more valuable to hear the details from the professors directly.

BeleBull: I am interested in a very technical field, yet I am attending a liberal arts college. I had a ton of questions about how a Bachelor of Arts would look in my field, so I emailed a bunch of professors, inquiring about how their program prepared students for the working world. Professors are usually really nice about answering your questions and they will often refer you to other people if they don’t know the answer.

spacelover17 (Princeton ‘19): When I visited Princeton, I arranged an appointment with one of the professors there (I actually met with the department head, Dr. Bahcall) and after a wonderful conversation with her in which I learned a lot about the program, she told me to tell her when I applied and she’d mention our conversation. Of course, getting a recommendation like that doesn’t always happen, but meeting a professor in the department can really provide a lot of insights to the program at the university that brochures and websites can’t give you.

epasquale (Duke ‘19): Before I visited certain universities, I found certain programs I was interested in and sent the professors an email with specific questions I had, asking them about potentially observing or participating in their class. For example, before I visited Duke I emailed the dance department asking about their program and set up a time to meet with a professor to ask specific questions and arranged taking a class. I also emailed professors about sitting in on a psychology lecture during my visit to get a feel for what a science lecture is like at Duke.

cjjo96I met with a professor in my prospective major’s department before I applied to Barnard. She was awesome and gave me lots of really interesting and useful information. I don’t know whether that meeting had any impact on my actual application, but it definitely helped me choose to apply ED to Barnard. I think that reaching out to professor’s is primarily beneficial in helping you learn more about the school. I am sure the admissions office likes to see an email from a professor saying that you’re fabulous, but I doubt it’ll make or break you. If you want to know more about departments or just dynamics between student and professor though, its a great idea to reach out!

Whether you’re just starting your search or you’re looking for help applying, it’s never too early to make the college application process easier. Search to find students like you or contact a mentor for help with the admissions process so you can narrow down your choices and get a head start.


About The Author

AdmitSee Staff
AdmitSee Staff

​We remember our frustration with applying to college and the lack of information surrounding it. So we created AdmitSee to bring much-needed transparency to the application process! Read more about the team here.

Browse Successful Application Files

Duke ‘18

Accepted to Duke, UPenn, Florida

Duke University, Class of 2018. Currently an Economics major after starting out as a Mechanical Engineering major.
Princeton ‘19

Accepted to Princeton, Columbia, Brown, Duke, Emory, JHU, Cornell

Pre-med, musician, first-gen, scientist.
Princeton ‘17

Accepted to Princeton, CMU, Columbia, Cornell, Stanford, Brown, Dartmouth, UPenn

Current Engineering Student with a wide array of interests in sports and
Duke ‘21

Accepted to Duke, Binghamton

Aristotle said, "A friend to all is a friend to none." I disagree.

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