Weekly Listserv Guidelines

Weekly Listserv Guidelines

Overview

Effective in Fall 2006 a new moderated e-mail listserv (Grad List) was created to provide a direct, yet passive, form for graduate student groups to communicate with graduate and professional students university-wide at Washington University at St. Louis. The Professional and Graduate Student Coordinating Committee (ProGradS) serves as university owner of the GRAD List; the Graduate Dean and ProGradS Liaison will provide administration oversight. The Graduate Professional Council (GPC) will manage and moderate the GRAD List through designated officers. Arts & Sciences Computing Center will maintain the system; the Office of Student Records will provide public e-mail addresses. The GRAD List is used primarily for publicity of GPC and graduate student group activities of general interest to graduate and professional students. The listserv will have student opt-out and subscriber opt-in features. The existing ProGradS Committee Listserv (All Grads List), built on individual school graduate student e-mail listservs, will continue to be managed and moderated by the ProGradS Committee (Graduate Dean and ProGradS Liaison) as needed for committee, institutional and emergency messages.

Process

Arts & Sciences Computing/Ken Keller worked with ProGradS Chair/Graduate Dean Thach and Liaison/Elaine Berland to establish the listserv. ASCC has ordered, specced, and installed the listserv software and created lists requested by owner and moderator. ASCC also scripted code to auto import the list from Student Records/Office for one large list. Future coding will fall to moderator/GPC to provide if deemed necessary. At the beginning of each semester the Director of the Office of Student Records/Sue Hosack will create and submit to ArtSci Computing/Ken Keller a file containing the names, e-mail addresses, and Student ID numbers of all graduate students at WU to support the proposed GPC e-mail listserv, as follows:

  1. File will include Danforth and Medical students who (a) have an “open” program record in SIS in one of the graduate divisions at WU, and (b) are registered for classes in the current term.
  2. File will NOT include those students who have placed an Information Restriction on either their name and/or their e-mail address at webSTAC. (Under FERPA, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, the University has defined a set of data elements from the student’s educational record as “directory information.” Directory information may be made publicly available by the institution without the student’s consent; however the student also has the right to block the release of directory information. At WU, the student may place such blocks or information restrictions on their record using webSTAC).
  3. New files will be generated several times at the beginning of each semester (fall and spring only), to pick up both new and returning students (actual dates to be determined).
  4. The Director of Student Records will submit data files for the GPC listserv to ArtSci Computing using a site/procedure TBD by the Director of Arts & Sciences Computing/Ken Keller.

Listserv Composition/Opting-Out/Opting-In

Using the above e-mail information, the GPC in cooperation with ASCC will automatically generate the GRAD List for the university-wide graduate and professional student population. If an individual student decides to opt-out of receiving GRAD List e-mail, there will be a simple feature in each e-mail message to enable unsubscribe function; there will also be a subscriber opt-in function to allow WU students who are not in the public directory to add their e-mail to the GRAD List.

Currently the opt-in and opt-out rules are as follows: To unsubscribe, students should e-maillistserv@grad.wustl.edu with “unsubscribe gradlist” in the body of the e-mail. To opt-in, they should e-mail listserv@grad.wustl.edu with “subscribe gradlist” in the body of the e-mail.

Messages on the GRAD List will include a permanent tagline that will include instructions for opt-out, opt-in and response to moderator/GPC, and identification information: “This message is sent to you on the GRAD List moderated by the Graduate Professional Council (GPC) of Washington University in St. Louis. For more information, visit http://www.gradlife.wustl.edu.”

Frequency

In an attempt to establish regular communication and reduce the frequency of e-mails and clutter in recipients’ inboxes, the GPC proposes to send out a weekly e-mail. Ideally, this e-mail will go out at the same time every week (currently on Monday) for the sake of consistency. Although the GPC as well as all university-wide groups would like to have a personal e-mail about their specific events, to do so may be impractical. This e-mail will contain the events listing for a week period.

The GPC, graduate student governments and graduate student clubs within schools, and registered university-wide graduate student groups may publicize events which are open and of general interest to graduate and professional students university-wide via the Grad List. Other groups may forward request to post events which are open and of general interest to the university graduate and professional students to the GPC moderator for consideration; questions about the suitability of an event can be referred to the GPC Executive Board.

Security

As e-mails are sent via the GRAD List, no listserv recipient (other than the designated GPC executives who have specified access) is able to ascertain the name, e-mail address or school of other recipients. Further, we have configured the GRAD List to reject any replies to the listserv so an individual cannot intentionally or accidentally reply to all GRAD List recipients. Lastly, the GPC will make every effort to keep this information available only to the GPC officers (GPC President and VP of Marketing and Communications) designated to moderate and post to the GRAD List.