22 August 2006

Student email

Should the University still provide students with email?

The University Information Management Systems Committee (UIMSC) decided at its meeting on Thursday 17 August 2006 to press ahead with the investigation of giving up hosting email for students. Instead, students will be asked to supply their email address on enrolment much as they supply postal and residential addresses and contact phone numbers now (which they should keep up to date through OSIS).

During a recent activity in the Division where students were asked to supply a contact email address, over 75% of 200+ participants nominated a non-UC student email address. Anecdotal evidence suggest many students don’t use their UC student email address, and of course when students leave they lose the address anyway, so can’t be contacted via their UC student email address for any follow-up communication.

It is expected that students who don’t have email addresses will be encouraged to set one up with any one of a number of free services like GMail, Yahoo! or Hotmail.

Students who check their email on campus might also find they are using up their traffic cost quota where before when the University provided the email account traffic was free. A working party is to be established to address this and other issues that might arise, and to consult widely with stakeholders to inform progress on the proposal.