If you use your email to communicate with students in a class, you will need to create folders or tags to track such emails. You probably will also have to create email groups for various classes. Students or you may also delete such email messages by accident, or misplace them at locations where you would not be able to find them at a later date. You may find a need to dig out some emails and resend if any of the above happened. To avoid all such time-wasting busywork, you might want to consider using your learning management system to send email instead.
With OpenClass, you can send email to students by clicking the “email” button on the course menu. You will then be able to choose the users to send the emails to.
With CourseSites, you can send emails to them in any of the following three ways:
Use “send email” under “course tools” to send emails to everyone or selected users.
Use “announcement” tool under “course tools” to create an announcement. When you do so, remember to check the box beside “Send a copy of this announcement immediately” to create the email message while keeping the announcement in the course. The benefit of doing this is that you keep your email message within the course as an announcement in case students ignore their emails but come to the learning management system to retrieve course materials.
Use the Grade Center to send email to particular students. As you grade their work, you may want to communicate with them about certain problems, and you do not need to get out of the Grade Center to send an email to them. Remain in the Grade Center, choose the student(s), and click on the “email” button to send an email to them. This will save you quite a bit of time that could be wasted switching back and forth from the Grade Center and the Email tool. This works best when you are grading student work or checking their performance within the Grade Center.
Check this video for a demonstration of these three methods if needed.
We often hear that students are not reading longer email messages. Besides, email messages may mess up your formatting. For these reasons, if there are documents that you would like students to spend substantial time reading, consider posting it as a document in your course site, while using announcements/emails to notify them of the availability of such documents, and where they are.