Learners' Help Book

Netiquette Guidelines

Netiquette is Internet etiquette, or guidelines and good practices for online communication in emails, discussion forums, and chat rooms. Please practice the following guidelines when posting to your course.

General Guidelines

  1. Format your text so it is easy to read. Try to use standard paragraph spacing, indentation, and legible font. Try to be consistent with your formatting, including font size, color, etc.
  2. Be concise and to the point in your communication. Limit discussion forum posts to a few paragraphs. Proofread and edit your work before posting.
  3. Avoid the use of ALL CAPS as this may be interpreted as shouting by other readers. Using only lowercase letters can also make your text more difficult to read. Overall, use good punctuation and spelling. Use emoticons sparingly, if at all.
  4. Avoid "texting" abbreviations, such as "OMG" or "IMHO".
  5. Respect the privacy of communication within a course. Do not publicly forward the comments of fellow learners to others outside the course.

Forum Guidelines

  1. Give your post a unique and descriptive title.
  2. Formulate your initial responses carefully and re-read everything before you submit. Use the spell check button in the editor. You may need to click on "show editing tools" on the tab at the top of the editing box in order to see the spell check tool and other editing tools.
  3. Be a good "listener". In other words, read and re-read your fellow participants' posts before making a response so you can be sure you really "heard" and understood their insights.
  4. Avoid ranting about a topic or a person. Practice civil discussion.
  5. Stay on topic in a discussion. If you want to talk about topics unrelated to a discussion, use the Global Cafe in your course.
  6. Respect the fact that participants have varying degrees of sensitivity, and that even some well-meaning constructive suggestions or comments may be misconstrued as public criticism. Thus, please refrain from sharing comments in ways that might be misinterpreted, or do so privately when appropriate.