I just finished my PhD and am starting an adjunct position at a local community college. I was responding to my first email from a student when I came across a problem I’ve never had before: I don’t know how to sign my email.

Some options I’ve considered are:

  • First Name: this is how I’ve signed every academic email my whole life.
  • First Name Last Name: I have signed business, legal, or other official letters like this, and I suppose since this is my first job I could sign it the same way?
  • Professor Last Name: this makes the most sense because that’s what I want to be addressed in the classroom, but I have never seen a professor write their title out like this.
  • Initials: I always thought professors signed their emails like this to shave precious seconds from their inbox time, but I’m now suspecting it has more to do with avoiding making the decision of how to sign.

I’m sure the best answer isn’t going to be one of the above suggestions. No matter what I pick, I want to be consistent, so there’s no confusion as to how I should be addressed.


Edit: this is in the US.

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