Inbox full yet? Even though we just got more capacity so those “your mailbox is almost full” messages have retreated for the moment, many of us still find it difficult to manage student email traffic, especially when we have more students than ever, and especially frustrating when many of their questions could have been answered by reading the syllabus. What’s the solution? In-class tutorials on the use and abuse of e-mail? A syllabus quiz to motivate comprehension of course basics? What about having students read and discuss an article by a professor who banned student email altogether? That’s what the author of this recent piece in Inside Higher Ed did, with pretty interesting results, culminating in the question, “Do we really want to graduate a generation of students who can’t decide for themselves what warrants pressing the send button?” My takeaway is that whatever policies we land on—about email or turning in late work or use of devices in the classroom—giving students a chance to think and talk about the issues behind the policies can create powerful buy-in and help develop important professional capacities.
Oh, and did I mention the CELT Conference on October 1-3? You don’t need to register for the conference as a whole or for most of the sessions, but check out the schedule now so you can plan what you’d like to attend. I especially recommend the Awards Luncheon and Keynote with Dr. Jillian Kinzie on Wednesday October 1 from 11:30 to 1:30 in the BMU Auditorium and her workshop for faculty on Friday October 3 from 12 to 1:30 in Colusa 100A.
It’s been great seeing a few more of you here in the Faculty Writing Community in MLIB 548. Join us?
*Authored by Dr. Katherine McCarthy.