Connecticut State University System Email Policy
Email as an Official Correspondence
- Purpose of this Policy
There is an expanding reliance on electronic communication among students, faculty members, and other employees throughout the CSUS motivated by the convenience, speed, cost-effectiveness, and environmental advantages of using email rather than printed communication. Because of this increasing reliance and acceptance of electronic communication, email will, from this point forward, be considered an official means for communication within the CSUS. Therefore, official notifications may be communicated via email.
No section of this policy is intended to supersede language or agreements reached pursuant to existing collective bargaining agreements.
This email policy is not inclusive of all aspects of email, rather it provides guidelines regarding email as an official means of communication including:
- University and CSUS office use of email;
- Assignment of email addresses;
- Use of and responsibilities associated with assigned email addresses; and
- Expectations regarding use of email.
- University and CSUS office use of email:
E-mail is an official means for communication within the CSUS. Therefore, the universities and the System Office will send communications to students, faculty, and other employees via email and will expect that those communications will be received and read in a timely fashion.
- Assignment of email addresses:
The information technology department at each CSUS university and at the System Office will assign each system employee and student an official email address. It is to this official address that the universities and the System Office will send email communications. This official address will be the address listed in the University’s Global Address List found in the Exchange/Outlook Address Directory and will be the official email address included with personal information within the administrative computing system.
- Redirecting of email:
Faculty and staff members will not be allowed to enable automatic email redirection to another email address. Those persons who use manual email redirection from their official address to another email address (e.g., @aol.com, @hotmail.com) do so at their own risk. It is the responsibility of the individual faculty or staff member to take whatever steps may be necessary with his or her personal email account to allow for the receiving of email forwarded from the official CSUS email account. These steps may include, but are not necessarily limited to, adding the official email address to a ‘safe-senders’ list and/or adjustment of any spam filters. Redirecting email does not absolve anyone of any responsibilities associated with communications sent to his or her official email address. The University will not be responsible for the handling of email by outside email providers.
- Expectations regarding use of email:
It is recommended that faculty members check their email at least as often as their most frequent class meets, in recognition that certain communications may be time-critical. Other employees should check their email regularly consistent with their work patterns.
- Educational uses of email:
Faculty members may determine how email will be used in their classes. It is strongly recommended that if faculty members have email requirements and expectations, they communicate such to their students by specifying these requirements in their course syllabi.
- Appropriate use of email:
In general, email is not appropriate for transmitting sensitive or confidential information unless an appropriate level of security matches its use for such purposes.
- The confidentiality of student records and information is protected under several federal and state laws, including the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (“FERPA”), the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (“GLBA”), and various statutory protections relating to health and counseling records. All use of email, including use for sensitive or confidential information, must be consistent with applicable law.
- While members of the CSUS community are encouraged to utilize electronic mail, it is expected that email will be utilized in a responsible manner, and that users will exhibit common sense, common decency, and civility. While debate concerning controversial issues is to be expected and encouraged, email discourse should not become a vehicle for intimidation and harassment.
- Users of electronic mail should be aware that CSUS is a public agency subject to the Connecticut Freedom of Information Act and draft their email communications accordingly.
- Other forms of communication will be utilized if required by law or operationally preferred.
The Council on Information Technology will review and revise this policy as needed. Staff and faculty members having questions or comments about this policy should contact the Chief Information Officer at their respective university or the System Office.
Effective Date: 08/01/2009