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Tips for Effective Online Communication

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Author cupharmacy | Publish Date August 10, 2015

By Michael Kazanjian and Lisha Bustos

Since CU's iPharmD® program relies heavily on electronic communication between students and faculty, it understands the online community well. With nearly 20 years’ experience in this realm, the program and its staff have developed tips for effective online communication that students and faculty alike will find helpful. The following offers a common sense guide to effective online etiquette.

It can be challenging to empathize with the people you’re talking to online. So, before posting any kind of online content, think about what you’re saying and ask yourself if you would be comfortable if someone posed questions or comments in the same way.

When corresponding in an online course (i.e. email, discussions) please demonstrate the following behaviors:

  • Be courteous and professional
  • Be clear and concise. Avoid sending multiple emails to your instructors or peers in a day and make sure to include all pertinent information in the message.
  • Don't post insults, invective, or other personally disrespectful comments, or post deliberately provocative or manipulative material intended or likely to elicit emotionally charged responses.
  • Be careful in the use of sarcasm and irony.
  • Give people the benefit of the doubt, and if you are misunderstood, don't get defensive.
  • Remember that demonstrating some patience in responding to discussion posts or when sending emails encourages more contributors with a wider variety of ideas and perspectives to participate. This will also give your instructors time to respond to your email in a more thorough and thoughtful manner.
  • Prior to posting a comment or question, write your response in draft form, save it and review again later, edit and then send. This is especially helpful in “touchy” situations.
  • Consider your audience -- before corresponding in any form (i.e. discussions, emails) online, think about what you're saying and ask yourself if you would be comfortable if someone posed questions or comments in the same way.

For additional tips and hints on using a Discussion Forum visit Netiquette.