Tips for finding a supervisor

Hi There, I will advice you give this article an ultimate attention on the tips for finding a supervisor.

In my previous post, I gave a broad overview of the key details during postgraduate transition. Today, we will be digging deeper into how to communicate your first email I called “letter of interest”

So, Let’s dive in without wasting much of time.

“You and your supervisor will be working closely together. Invest time at the beginning of the relationship and make a good first impression.

Before you start

Do your research. You should know:

  1. What program you want to take? Sometimes your field of study may have a different name at the university.
  2. What are the admission requirements for your chosen program? Remember some programs may have higher than the minimum admission requirement. Some programs may require additional documentation such as a GRE. Check what is required for your program.
  3. What area of research do you want to pursue? Are there professors doing research in the area of interest to you?
  4. You should identify one or two professors who are doing research in an area closely related to what you are interested in.


The more specific you can be in your first email the better success you will have. You should:

  • Read the Professors webpage;
  • Check out any online publications that are available and read them;
  • Calculate you current grade-point average;

Writing Tips

Professors get dozens of emails from potential students. If you want to get your email noticed, you must give the professor the information they need, quickly, clearly and professionally.

  • The professor is not your friend or colleague. Use proper titles – Dr. Smith;
  • Keep your email short, just three paragraphs, no more than 250 words;
  • Use complete sentences;
  • Use spell check.

Key Parts

Introduce yourself: Tell the professor in two or three sentences who you are. State your degree level and your research area. Give a clear statement indicating that you meet the admission requirements which includes your grade point average and, if required, your English proficiency test results. If you do not have proof of English proficiency, state when you plan to take the IELTS or TOEFL test.
Dear Dr. Smith,
My name is XX XX and I am from the University of XX. I am in my final year of a masters in Biology with focus on plant breeding research. My GPA is 86% and my TOEFL iBT is 100.
Make a connection and provide reasons to be considered: Use specific references to make a connection between the work that you have been doing and the research projects that the professor is working on. Important points to include:

  • Papers, journal articles, either published, accepted or submitted.
  • Conference papers given;
  • Scholarships won

My current research project for my master’s program is in canola breeding for fungus disease resistance and I have just submitted a co-authored article which was accepted by XXX. I have attached a brief research interest statement with more details. I was reading about recent work in genetically modified wheat on the website and it looks very interesting. I am interested in building upon my master’s experience and expanding my research into related areas. I have attached a copy of my C.V. for your review.
State your request; tell the professor what you are looking for.
I wish to begin a PhD program in XX in September 2016 and would be very interested in working under your supervision. I would appreciate if you could review the attached documents and let me know what the possibilities might be”. (—-source).
So, with the aforementioned tips, I believe you are head up to the personal assignments you need to do. In addition to this post, I will be hosting a webinar via Skype for a live demonstration of the search tips. I will also be giving away valuable information on different kind of letters Professors  might  require you to write-what each means and how to approach them.
In addition, I will be answering questions on admission requirements like test scores, communication etiquettes. how to communicate your interests and  commencement dates.
To be part of the webinar, kindly shoot me an email at ( so I can send you a direct invitation with my Skype ID or simply follow the blog using a valid email address so as to get  notified of future posts.
Thanks for your time and see you on the webinar.

Paul Ojo                                                                                                                                   (Founder: WhatNextMentors)
PS! My  sincere apology to those who might have subscribed to this blog for business updates on Affiliate Marketing. I am working on partitioning info posting to specially focus on the subject . Thanks for your understanding.