E-mail Literacy in Higher Education Academic Settings

Sümeyye Konuk


The research purpose was to identify (1) the problems encountered by academic and administrative staff in emails received from students, (2) positive and negative qualities of the authentic emails of higher education students, (3) functional explanations of the academic email, (4) the problems encountered by students in emails received from academic and administrative staff, and (5) higher education students’ email writing awareness. An exploratory sequential mixed design was used. The study group consisted of 15 staff and 1064 higher education students. The qualitative data were collected from staff interviews and 80 authentic emails of students. And a survey was prepared based on qualitative data and then quantitative data were collected. The problems encountered by staff are style, carelessness, articulacy problem, spelling and punctuation problem, email incivility. The negative qualities of authentic emails are as follows: not using institutional username, formal language, paragraph structure in the email body, salutation, closing statement, contact information; username without name and surname, blank subject line, spelling and punctuation problems, sloppy wording, lack of self-introduction. Non-descriptive, late, and short answers, not getting answers, sloppy answers, emails with negative feelings disturbed students. Students’ awareness of writing academic emails displayed a more positive picture than the emails they wrote. Items in which students’ awareness is weak are as follows: trying to reflect their feelings to email, using punctuation marks to convey the feeling, writing email for long and complex matter, using paragraph structure, adding contact details, CC - BCC. Research results were discussed with relevant literature.


Academic Writing, Email, Email Literacy, Netiquette, Higher Education

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijels.v.9n.3p.29


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