Revised November 2017
- Mass email is generally defined as unsolicited email sent to more than 50 students. The same message may not be sent multiple times to fewer than 50 students to circumvent these guidelines.
- Mass email should only be sent to students to make significant announcements regarding registration, important deadlines, fee payment and other need-to-know information. Email should be compelling, brief and to the point.
- Routine information about campus events, activities, programs, etc., may be included on the Current Students website rather than in mass email.
- The Office of Institutional Research approves requests to send emails to students when they will be asked to complete a survey or participate in research based initiatives. IR helps define the parameters of the population for the survey and determines the sample size. Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval is also required if the survey is part of an academic research project.
- Emails soliciting support for or against an ASBSU candidate or ballot initiative are prohibited.
Responsibility for Approval
The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management oversees mass email sent to students to ensure that communication is consistent, accurate, and coordinated. This includes the responsibility for reviewing and approving content and sending regular updates and announcements. All unsolicited mass email to students, with limited exceptions (see below), must be approved in advance by the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management. The Vice President can approve the request to be sent:
- one time only
- on a specified routine basis
Mass Email to All Currently Enrolled Students: Complete the Mass Email Request Form at least one week prior to the intended send date. The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management will notify the requester via email if the request is approved. The Office of the VP SAEM will obtain the email addresses and send the email.
Mass Email to Targeted Group of Students: Complete the Mass Email Request Form at least 10 working days prior to the intended send date. In addition, submit a Student Records Query Request to the Office of the Registrar. The turnaround time for queries is typically 10 business days. The Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management will notify the requester and the Registrar’s Office if the request is approved.
Mass Email to Recruit Student Research Participants: If your request to email students involves asking them to complete a survey or participate in research based initiatives, please submit an IR Data Request Form to the Office of Institutional Research. Additionally, if the survey/research email is part of an academic research project, you will need to contact the Office of Research Compliance for Institutional Review Board (IRB) review after IR approves your request. Then, once you receive IRB approval, IR will provide you with the appropriate contact list.
Mass Emails from Student Organizations: If you are a student requesting student information for your recognized student organization or on behalf of your affiliated national organization, submit your request to the Student Involvement and Leadership Center by filling out the Query Request for Student Organizations.
The Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management delegates the authority to approve and send unsolicited mass email to students under the following conditions:
- College Deans to communicate with students enrolled in their colleges.
- Department Chairs to communicate with students enrolled in their academic departments.
- Instructors and academic departments to communicate with students in their majors.
- Instructors to communicate with the students enrolled in their classes.
- Student organizations to communicate with their members or other interested individuals on their own email list.
- Emails related to student organizations or Associated Students of Boise State University (ASBSU) official business sent by Student Involvement and Leadership Center to student organization officers and advisors.
- Emails that request student participation in surveys and/or research approved by the Office of Institutional Research. Survey/research emails that are part of an academic research project also require additional approval from the Institutional Review Board (IRB).
- Every attempt must be made to protect recipients’ privacy (i.e., blind copy recipients rather than publicly listing email addresses).
- All mass emails must be related to university business.
- Student email addresses provided for an approved mass email must only be used for that purpose.
- Email lists are provided with the understanding that the sender accepts responsibility for proper use and care of this information. This information is not to be released to other university or non-university parties without the approval of the Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management.