Dear students: teachers say email etiquette has room for improvement

Recently, McNicholas students have neglected email etiquette when emailing their teachers. Students have been omitting a greeting and writing messages similar to texts or sending emails without checking spelling. In order to send professional, effective emails, senders must follow a short set of rules.

  • When emailing a teacher or other professional, include a formal greeting.

Be sure to use a title and a name before getting to the point. Address him or her with a proper heading, and avoid expressions like ‘hey.’

  • Be clear, concise, and respectful in the body of the email.

Since tone is difficult to convey through an email, reread to make sure nothing comes across as demanding, angry, or careless. It’s important to remember that these are not texts to friends and should be written differently. “Address them as you were face to face, with respect, almost overly respectful,” Director of Educational Technology Katie Ritter said.

  • Before sending, review everything for spelling.

Microsoft Outlook checks automatically as the email is being typed. Do not ignore the red underlines.

  • Make sure the email is being sent to the correct person or people.

Students need permission to send emails to the entire school. A group can be created on Schoology to get a message to a club or team that does not need to go to the entire student body. If this would benefit a group or club, a student in the group can ask Ritter or a club moderator to set up a group on Schoology. Announcements can also be sent to Mrs. Jane Ray to include in the daily student announcements, also found on Schoology.

  • Do not be demanding.

Teachers receive emails all day from students, colleagues, and parents, but they cannot be on their computers 24/7. They may not immediately respond and being demanding certainly doesn’t help ensure a quick response. “Whether it’s about a grade or an upcoming assignment, if you’re asking something of an elder or a teacher, it needs to be polite,” science teacher Lauren Wulker said.

For more tips, visit Microsoft Outlook’s website and McNick’s Acceptable Use Policy.

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