Net Etiquette

How to write a respectful email to your instructor:

  1. Salutation – Dear Lisa Kljaich, or Dear Professor Kljaich (I don’t have a professorship, but no worries), or Dear Ms. Kljaich
  2. I’m in Music 200x.
  3. I need help with………[state your problem].
  4. I have looked at the syllabus and didn’t find the answer I was seeking.
  5. If your question is about a specific assignment: I have looked at the assignment [name the assignment], and I have viewed the samples given as well.
  6. Or, I read the feedback on my assignment, AND referenced the syllabus, but I have a question about [state your question].
  7. I think this is what I need to do [state your understanding], but I would like guidance.
  8. OR –  “Would you please”  [state what action you would like from me].
  9. Adding a “thank you” or some closing is customary.
  10. Your name as it appears on Blackboard.
  11. Bonus – Your email is carefully edited.




Ensure your comments to fellow students are respectful:

  1. Keep the focus on YOUR opinion. This is your interpretation, not the gospel truth.
  2. Make “I” statements: “I prefer,” “I don’t think that’s correct,” “That’s not what I found, etc.
  3. Find something positive to share – always.
  4. Avoid judgmental language:
    1. Even – there wasn’t even, you didn’t even,
    2. The truth of the matter….
    3. The facts are clear…..
  5. Build rapport: Look for things you can agree upon, or shared experiences.
  6. Bonus – use an online editor to help you submit comments that show that you are careful and took time with your words.