This is a confusing time for everyone. It’s ok to ask questions!
1. Start with the syllabus
- Even with recent changes, the syllabus is still the best place to start, but also check Carmen or your OSU email for new versions or updates.
- Search keywords using “Control-F” to quickly find answers.
2. Do your research
- Before asking questions of your professor or TA, go through your course material to try to find answers.
- Take notes as you search so you can keep track of where you looked for help.
- Use outside reliable sources (other textbooks, help videos like Khan Academy, etc.) for additional explanations.
3. Ask questions respectfully
- Show respect for your professor by contacting them in the way they requested in the syllabus and addressing them as “Dr. ____.”
- Remember that they are people too, and are likely just as stressed as you are. They also may be juggling job and family, and could be dealing with illness.
4. Be clear and specific
- Make specific and short subject lines to emails.
- Keep emails brief and easy to read. If you have multiple questions, consider using a bulleted list or requesting an online meeting to ask your questions.
- Remember to include an actual question, not just statements. Be clear about what you need.
5. Don’t wait too long
- Start your assignments as soon as you get them so you can ask questions well before the deadline.
- Allow at least 48 hours for professors to respond to emails before following up.