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I am an international student who just came to this country. I always worried about writing emails to my professors, because I think my English is rude. I would like to be more polite, for example, I wrote to a professor for auditing a class, the professor wrote me back and told me the course schedule, he said if I am free at that time, I could certainly audit it. I think the professor is very kind and want to thank him, so I am about to write:

Dear Professor XXX,

Thank you for your kindness! I think for sure I will go!

Yours sincerely, XXX

My question is: Am I being rude? How can that email be more polite?

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  • I think that's fine. Your meaning and intention are unambiguosly conveyed. If the professor is the lecturer of the said class I might phrase it like "I will surely come [to the class]". Or even, "See you there!" The latter is a bit more informal, and may not go well together with the more formal tone of the rest of your message. – Jyrki Lahtonen Jan 12 at 6:08
  • Thank you Lahtonen! – wenqksoq Jan 12 at 6:37
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There is nothing impolite in your writing. Indeed it is more polite than many native English speakers would be.

Remember, it is unlikely that you are the first foreign student at your university. Don't worry about minor errors. You will improve faster if you use English confidently when possible.

I do notice that you tend to use lots of exclamation marks in your writing. Try to only use them for things that are actually surprising. Moreover "Yours, sincerely" is a quite formal way to end a letter. This formality contrasts with the informal and friendly style of the content. Try to avoid changing from formal to casual in the same letter.

  • Thank you James, that really helps a lot. – wenqksoq Jan 14 at 5:18

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