Document 192357

Technical English
How to write an email in English Formal email (company) Important v Messages should be polite, using polite sentences.
v Use formal language.
v Messages should be clear and concise. Try to keep it no longer than ten lines if
v Messages without any title or subject may not be opened and could be disregard and
considered as spam or virus.
Subject and Beginning 1. Give a title to the message in the subject line. Subjects should be short, concise and
formal and aptly describe the content of the email.
e.g. Order No. 2348X
Delayed Shipment
Laboratory Equipment Order
2. Start the message with greetings (“Dear…” optional).
- If you do not know the recipient’s name, use “Sir”, “Madam” or “To whom it may
- If you do not know the recipient but know their name, use their surname with a title
(Mr, Mrs, Ms, Miss).
e.g. Dear Mr Smith, (British English)
Dear Ms. Jones: (American English)
- If you are familiar with the recipient, you can use their first name.
Body 1. In the introduction, give a clear indication of what the message is about.
2. Write full details in the following paragraphs. For each subject or idea, write a
3. In the conclusion, make sure to indicate what should happen next.
Attachments v If the message contains any attachment file, make sure to refer to them in the body of
the message.
v The title of the file should be clear and describe its content to avoid being considered
as a virus. The title should not be too general.
End 1. End the message in a polite way, using a formal ending.
e.g. Yours sincerely,
2. Include full name (first name and surname) at the end of the message.
3. If you need to give details of your job title, department, etc., put them after your name.
Technical English
Informal email (friend or family) Important v The language of the message depends on how familiar you are with the recipient. For
close personal friends, immediate family or partners, the language can be very
Subject and Beginning 1. Write a short phrase for the title in the subject line. The subject must clearly relay the
reason for the email.
2. Start the message with “Dear (name)” or a casual greeting. You can also start directly
with the name of the recipient.
e.g. Dear Amy,
Body 1. Introduce the body of the message with a question about the recipient’s health.
2. In the introduction, mention the reason for writing an email to the recipient.
3. Write about the main subject of the email in the following paragraphs. If writing about
several subjects, make sure to write a paragraph for each subject.
4. In the conclusion, ask the recipient to write back.
End 1. End the message with casual salutations.
e.g. See you,
Best regards,
Best wishes,
Love, (for close personal friends and family)
2. Include first name at the end of the message.
Technical English
Resources v Centre for Independent Language Learning:
v eHow Tech:
v Carmen Luisa’s ESL site:
v English for Techies:
v Using English:
v Study British English:
v Edit Avenue:
v Buzzle: