Examples and Exercises

Miriam Kinfe

Example 1: Inappropriate Student Email

Subject: [none]1

Hello Mam,2

I Adya, student of Composition on wednesday3 group at 5pm.4 I have tried a lot to submit assignment on drop box.5 But still i6 am unable to do so. Would you please help me?.7 When i click on drop box there ‘no folder found’ is displayed. I am worried about it.

Thank you8

The example above emphasizes an example of an inappropriately composed email sent to an instructor. Some problems with the email are:


  1. There is no subject as to why the sender is composing to email.
  2. Mam is in an appropriate salutation to a professor in an American context.
  3. Then, the sender introduced herself, which is good. But, she had some technical problems with capitalization (Wednesday-3, 1-6) and space after period (4,5,6,7).
  4. The main content of the message has some grammar errors and was not proofread before it was sent.
  5. The sender did not close her message appropriately (8).

Example 2: Inappropriate Student Email

Subject: [none]1

Dear Mam2,

I submit the student information.

Hurray 🙂3

The second example is a continuation of the first one. Subject line is missing, salutation is informal and closing is inappropriate, as the sender use smiley and informal language.

Example 3: Appropriate and Formal Email

Subject: Problem Submitting Assignment 1


Dear Dr. Martin,


My name is Adiya Kumar, a student in your Composition II class. I was unable to post my assignment on D2L. Would it be possible if I come to your office today, at 2 pm in the afternoon?


Also, I have some questions related to our class project. Do we choose our team members or will you assign us?


Thank you.


Adiya Kumar

In the example above, the sender had a clear subject title that addresses her reason to compose the email. Then, she saluted her professor professionally. Next, she introduced herself, and clearly mentioned her main concern. She used a paragraph break to address another concern related to the class. At last, she concluded her email by a formal salutation and signature (full name).


  1. Write an email to your professor.
  2. Write an email to a friend.
  3. What differences have you noticed?

Further Reading




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Examples and Exercises Copyright © 2020 by Miriam Kinfe is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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