Tuesday, February 21, 2006

E-mail Etiquette

A friend of mine from graduate school sent me this article today addressing how e-mail lowers the boundaries between students and professors and to what extent the professors appreciate this growing intimacy. Here's a piece:

"(Feb. 21) - One student skipped class and then sent the professor an e-mail message asking for copies of her teaching notes. Another did not like her grade, and wrote a petulant message to the professor. Another explained that she was late for a Monday class because she was recovering from drinking too much at a wild weekend party."

Much of the Language Arts curriculum revolves around teaching students how to communicate effectively, and many students truly are clueless when it comes to communicating with adults via e-mail or the blog. For example, the article describes how one professor teaches her students that "the less powerful person always has to write back." This is one of those little rules that I've always abided by unconsciously but wouldn't think to verbalize to my students. In any case, the rest of the article is a good, engaging read, and it's at the following address: http://articles.news.aol.com/news/article.adp?id=20060221095709990001

Should we start addressing this more directly in the high school classroom?


Blogger Karl Fisch said...

I think this is definitely something we should consider addressing in high school, I'm just not sure where (or exactly how). I think that communication skills are changing (along with the methods), and students probably do need help understanding what is appropriate and what is not. (Well, probably not just students - we need some help as well!)And it's not just the "appropriateness" that needs to be addressed, it's showing them how to communicate well via electronic means. This might be a good discussion topic for our group sometime this spring . . .

9:27 AM  

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