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Students and teachers discuss email, possible complications

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Scroll Archive

BYU-Idaho students and professors are finding that communicating through email has become the more convenient way to relay information to one another.

“The Internet makes everything convenient,” said Anne Papworth, a faculty member in the Department of English. “One of the things I see is I’ll get emails very late at night. There is a sense of convenience and timing that the Internet gives, but there is no absolute way to send feedback when emails are sent so late.”

Papworth said students have the perception that just because they notified their professors through email, everything is all right.

“There are two problematic emails that I receive,” Papworth said. “The first email is the ‘I don’t feel very well,’ and the second is the ‘I missed class. Could you tell me what I missed? Would you reteach the material?’”

Sixty-one percent of American workers who use the Internet say email is very important for doing their job, 54 percent say the same about the Internet in general, according to the Pew Research Center.

“Students don’t have much appreciation to the time it takes to answer all the emails that I do,” Papworth said. “Over the last ten years, I have noticed that I spend more time responding to emails.”

Among adults employed full-time or part-time, 46 percent say their employer blocks access to certain websites, the same percentage says their company has rules about what they can say or post online, according to Pew Research Center.

“The hard part about staying focused on homework is trying to stay on the school website and not just going to other things,” said Emily Deimler, a freshman studying elementary education. “I have to keep telling myself not to open another tab until I finish what I’m working on.”

Papworth said she does not keep her grades posted constantly because when students are in the work field, their boss or supervisor will not be constantly monitoring their progress.

“I find that students seem to lose motivation when they don’t know how they are doing consistently through grades posted on I-Learn,” Papworth said.

Papworth said she purposefully does not post to I-Learn because she wants to give feedback to her students and discuss what they find face to face.

“It really depends on the situation when needing to meet in person,” Papworth said. “I feel that when students send emails they are putting the learning on the teacher. When students ask quick questions and want to come in and discuss, the students put the learning on themselves.”

Papworth said about 75 percent to 80 percent of students who email her use great email etiquette. Good email etiquette gives students credibility, and teachers’ willingness to respond is greater when it is used.

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