How To

How to Tell Your Professor You’re Struggling

How to Tell Your Professor You’re Struggling – Are you having issues both at home or school and it is difficult for you to cope well with school work but you don’t know who to talk to not because you don’t want to talk to someone but because you don’t know to go about it? Is your professor a very understanding person but you just don’t know how to tell your professor you’re struggling?

Then don’t worry because most times, it happens to most people not because they don’t have the boldness but they just don’t know how to present it to look like important info.

In this article, I will be guiding you through the necessary steps that you need to get the attention of your professor. Following these steps will help you on how to tell your professor you’re struggling to ensure that you read it with understanding, but if you don’t understand it, read it over again or you use the comment box and I will have a chat with you.

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But before we continue, we all know that school can be sometimes so stressful that most people do end up having either physical or mental health issues or their guidance being down. But this doesn’t stop many of them from schooling because there is someone who is assisting them in one way or the other that they could.

And one of the people that helps you during that period, is your professor.

Yes, your professor can cover you up in your academy pursue during difficulty and good times and they also can make things hard for you. 

So you should try to be on the good page of your professor. But before you can learn how to tell your professor that you’re struggling, there are some things that you need to know. and some of them are;

How to be on the good page of your professor: 

1 Be active in school: you can’t be taken seriously if you are not serious in class or even try to be serious. most times, the way you are in the classroom with your colleagues and your professor determines what kind of response you will be receiving from your professor even after learning how to tell your professor that you’re struggling. 

Therefore, before following the steps in telling your professor about your struggling, try and show him or her that education is for you and that you seriously want to study.

This will work the magic when you finally follow the steps that are given on how to tell your professor that you’re struggling. 

2 Be submissive: Okay your background may be higher than the professor’s own but using it to rob on his or her face, will not get you anywhere especially now that you need his assistance.

Your professor is your professor no matter his stand in society, so always respect that.

When you are submissive and then follow the rules and regulations of the classroom, you will be able to have his concern when you won’t tell him about your struggling.

3 Be caring: There is how you are caring toward your colleagues both in the classroom or in the laboratory during practical and you make a good name for yourself.

Caring doesn’t have to be money, it can be offering assisted hands to someone in class or check on someone.

The way you care for someone or people most times determine how you will be treated when you are down looking for help.

As your professor, he or she does not have to come and sit with you but he or she watches and studies every one of his students either in or out, etc.

Then after creating or having the good part of you, you can proceed to how to tell your professor that you are struggling by following their few steps;

1 Email: the best way to reach your professor is through email. either the struggle you are facing is that you missed a class, a test, absent from school, etc all can be done through email.

But there is a difference between writing an email to a friend and writing an email to a professor. you can be called formal, and informal.

When writing an email to your professor, some things are not necessary to be included and some things are very important to be included. and this is where the article comes in.

When writing an email to your professor concerning one thing or the other, it will come with a lot of red flags which you will need to avoid. therefore follow these steps carefully when composing your email.

Mental Health Email template that you can follow or study.

A mental health email is an email in which you are writing to your professor trying to tell him the reason behind your backwardness. 

Dear Professor Ben,

My name is Amber, and I am one of the students in your 9:00 Introduction to Computer programming course. I have missed out on several classes as a result of my mental health during the disease outbreak and with that, it is giving me a hard time to meet up the deadlines as fixed. 

Please is there any possibility of me requesting an extension on my C++ programming language assignment? 

Thank you,


Now, this is a very short and straightforward email that is not complicated to read and understand, nor is it built or compile with the tone of familiarity in it.

This kind of email shows the sincerity that you want to study if not because of your mental health issues during the outbreak. You do not need to speak some deep or tell him or her a comprehensive list of what is happening to you.

Instead, you are telling him what is wrong and also seeking the way forward in which he can help you on the assignment you missed. 

You should allow him to be the one to asked you for more details about your health when he sees you. Is not everyone that do have the ability or the grace to sit down and write long emails. so you should leave it short and clear mere standing to read it.

After this first email, there is another email template that you can also use if your struggling has nothing to do with mental health. if your issue is about child care, then let’s see how to tell your professor you’re struggling based on the child care problem.

How To Write a Childcare Email to Your Professor

During this pandemic, a lot of children are affected in a way that they cannot return to school because of medical issues, financial crises, etc. This kind of case has made a lot of parents to be confused about what next step they should follow especially parents that are also enrolling for either their postgraduate programs or doctrine degree.

One good thing about many professors is that they have a heart just like everyone else. this means that reaching out to your professor all because of your childcare problems, a good professor will give you the benefit of doubt and ensures that he or she gives you that chance to fulfill your duty as a mother or big sister and also as a student.

This means that if you are in a tied corner of having to choose between your education and your responsibility in the family, you don’t have to be scared.

 Although is normal to be scared still, all you have to do is reach out to your professor on time, tell him or her what you are going you are going through, and also the decision that you have to take.

Also in the email, you will need to propose a way forward in which you know that it will benefit you or that you will be able to meet up.

Although, some professors will not agree with you and your decision that doesn’t mean that they will not also give you their option which you will have no other option than to try to meet up to it.

But then, how can you put up this kind of email?

How to tell your professor you’re struggling with childcare problem;

Childcare email template

Dear Professor Walker,

My name is Carolina, and I am one of your 11:00 AEC class students. Due to some issues concerning my children’s childcare. I will not be able to be available for the fixed class which was scheduled to take place on Wednesday, May 26th.

Please I will like to know if there is anything else I can do to made-up for the attendance points in which I will be missing during the class apart from collecting notes from colleagues to copy and also to read.

Thank you,


That’s it, You have info him on time which means you stand a better chance of getting considered unlike those that don’t take permission in time. 

You don’t only take permission because you want to be absent because of your children but also, you’ve told him few things that you will be doing when you finally have a chance of returning to class.

This particular action or decision shows him that you are one of the students that enjoy his classes and will not want to miss out on whatever was taught by him.

Perhaps, this is whatever professor or lecturer wants, a student who will be reading to do anything just to pass his course well like others. a student who does not take the law into his or her hands.

With this, you will either be expecting a feedback email from him soon which will consist of the way forward, or a rejection. But don’t worry because 80% of it is always positive feedback when you use the right template.

That notwithstanding, if you are struggling as a result of this pandemic or for any other reason, considering reaching out to your professor is the right thing to do.

You may be saying you don’t want to be disappointed with whatever response you will get from your professor but that’s not it. the way you present it will determine if he will consider it or not.

But in this pandemic, a lot of professors including school administrative boards are ready to accommodate all their students in any way they can, be it by extending the payment of school fees or exams date for those that missed out during the exam because of one struggling or the other.

Moreover, if you compare the two emails, you will observe that there are almost the same but a little different but they have one similarity in common and that is, “Familiarity”. 

No matter how close you are with your professor, don’t allow it to come in between when you are writing an email to him. try to be as formal as you can. 

This will determine if he should take you seriously or just read it as a normal regular email.

Using this kind of template to write to tell your professor you’re struggling does not mean that if he pardons you today and then decided to help you out that you should continue using it regularly.

Too many excuses to a professor by one student are enough to turn him off from helping you after three times of assisting. So no matter what, ensure that you try and make it up to him when he helps you the first time and the second time.

This will make him understand that you are not taking his kindness for granted, with this, he will be able or ready to help you any other time that you need his help. 

Now, after all, being said, no matter your struggling, be it because of the pandemic or childcare or anything else entirely, you can still use any of these email formats in writing to your professor by editing it and then put in words and click the send button. That’s it. Congrats you have successfully learn how to tell your professor you’re struggling. 

READ ALSO: Best Time Management Apps For Students

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