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How to Write a Letter to the Dean of a School


There are many reasons to write a letter to the dean of a school. Whether the purpose of your letter is reinstatement, admission or seeking funding for a program, one of the most important aspects of writing the letter is the tone. The tone should be extremely professional, due to the elevated position of the dean at a school. Give well-researched reasons for admission or for funding, including facts on performance that can be measured, tangibles rather than just good intentions.

Format the letter according to MLA guidelines. The date is first, right aligned. Double space, and then include the dean's address. Double space again, typing the salutation. The greeting should be very formal, as in "Dear Dean Smith," followed by a double space.

Introduce the letter by directly addressing the purpose of the writing. If you are writing to be reinstated to an academic program, begin with that: "I am writing concerning my recent academic probation." Or, if you are seeking admission into a program: "I am writing to you concerning my interest in the English Master's program at the University of South Florida." The first paragraph should make explicit the reason for your writing the letter.

Write the second paragraph with the intention of explicating why your request should be granted. To reenter a program, make clear your plan to improve your grades or attendance. In your time off, you should have done some activity, volunteering or working, to prove you are ready for returning. On the other side, if you are trying to enter a program, you should make clear what qualifies you for the program.

Compose a closing paragraph that summarizes your positive qualities and the point of your writing the letter. Do not simply reiterate what has been said before, but try to close the letter on a positive note. The closing paragraph is meant to sell you and persuade the dean of your argument.

Construct the closing of the letter. After the last paragraph, double space. Your closing should be formal; "sincerely" is the most widely accepted closing. A comma will follow the closing, and then four spaces. After the four spaces, write your name followed by any title (such as M.A. or Ph.D.). Then, type your contact address following MLA guidelines.

About the Author

Megan Weber began writing professionally in 2010. Her expertise is travel, specifically through Europe and the United Kingdom, and literature. Weber has a Master of Arts degree in English from the University of South Florida and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Wittenberg University, where she graduated with honors.

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