Faculty & Staff

Netiquette Policy

Online Access

  • Do not allow anyone access to the Sage network or any online course through your account. Make sure you log out when using public computers. Allowing anyone (parents, friends, spouses, etc.) to access the course or see other students’ work violates federal privacy laws. Do not share your password with anyone or allow anyone to use your account.
  • Students taking online and hybrid courses are required to use their sage.edu email account when communicating with instructors and classmates.

For further information reference Sage’s Information Technology Acceptable Use Policy.

Adhering to College and Federal Regulations

  • Do not post anything illegal, harassing, sexually suggestive, or inflammatory on your personal profile, course discussion boards or any other institutional portals. This includes posting racy photos and using curse words, and religious, racial, sexual, or ethnic epithets. Further, do not post anything that would violate Health Insurance Portability and Affordability Act (HIPAA) regulations, or the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations. Your comments should relate to course content and not try to influence your classmates to your political, social, or religious beliefs or values. These are academic courses, not social networking sites. If instructors see something that they think might offend others, they might remove it or ask you to remove it. If you aren’t sure about something, talk to your instructor before posting. Repeat offenses may result in further disciplinary action.

Spelling, Grammar, and Punctuation

  • Follow the rules and conventions of standard English; use correct spelling, grammar and punctuation. Avoid use of text speak such as CUL8R, LOL or emoticons.
  • Use normal capitalization. Typing in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS is the Internet equivalent of yelling at someone. Don’t do it in e-mail or in the discussion boards. Also typing messages in all lower case makes your message difficult to read.


  • Do not spam your classmates or instructor with e-mail advertisements or solicitations either through Moodle or their e-mail accounts. Students in this course have the same right to privacy as others. Also, please do not add classmates or instructors to e-mail lists for jokes, horoscopes, religious materials, commercial information, or anything else that does not relate to class work.

Formal Address and Online Discussion

  • Address your classmates and instructors by name in course communication (such as e-mails, discussions posts). For example: “Hi Ms. Smith, I have a question”… or “Tamika, I like your answer to that question.” This shows that you recognize the person at the other end of the communication.
  • Unless instructed otherwise, assume that your instructor prefers to be referred to in more formal terms, (i.e., Professor Smith, Dr. Jones, Mr. Davis, Ms. Grey).
  • Be respectful of those in the academic community. Do not make demands or threats. Think about what you want from your instructor or your classmates before you send an angry e-mail or make an angry discussion post.
  • Discuss personal matters, grades, and policy matters with instructors via e-mail, voice chat, over the phone, or in their offices, not in the course discussion boards. Refrain from posting complaints, rants, or problems about the course or your life in the discussion board.
  • Remember to identify your class/section, e.g., ENG 101-30, and the topic of your message in the subject line of your email, so your instructor can relate your question to a specific person and class.
    • Discussion Board Guidelines
      • Make posts that are on topic and within the scope of the course material
      • Review and edit your posts before sending
      • Be as brief as possible while still making a thorough comment
      • Always give proper credit when referencing or quoting another source
      • Be sure to read all messages in a thread before replying
      • Don’t repeat someone else’s post without adding something of your own to it
      • Avoid short, generic replies such as, “I agree.” You should include why you agree or add to the previous point
      • Always be respectful of others’ opinions even when they differ from your own
      • When you disagree with someone, express your differing opinion in a respectful, non-critical way
      • Do not make personal or insulting remarks
      • Be open-minded

Published: 06/12/14; Netiquette Policy – Rules and Requirements adapted from Surry College; Discussion Board Guidelines adapted from University of Florida;