The University should change its email address format

Passed: November 2019 (19th)

What do you want? / Why do you want it?

It has come to my attention, especially after being a School Rep, that email addresses really make certain things about you stand out e.g. 'll' start email addresses point out that you have come from a deprived background/that your parents have not been to university/ that you have gotten into university with a lower grade threshold. Also, certain email addresses point out if you have engaged in a foundation year, or if you have gotten into university via an unconventional route -e.g. Bradford transfers in the School of Medicine.

UoL email formats inform you of when you started at university - which can mean that if you have had to resit/take years out - this becomes quite apparent to other people and it provokes people to ask questions that can be upsetting - 'How come your email address is um13?' for example. I feel as though - although not bad - this way of structuring email addresses can really give a lot of information about the person's background away and it is not necessarily things that the student may wish to share. I feel they should have the option to disclose whether they are from a deprived background, if they have gotten in with a lower grade threshold, had to resit/take years out etc. It should not be disclosed for them from the get-go.

I am also aware that it will be a complicated process to change current students’ email addresses, however, I think it is beyond worth it. When I discussed this with a high level academic in my school last year, I was told that it was something that has been brought up many times by many students before. If it has been brought up before and students are made uncomfortable by it -why should this not provoke change? It would be great if we could just have our name or initials and a random number or something as such which will not disclose anything - I am aware that a lot of other universities have email addresses that are student names followed by @institute.ac.uk. Perhaps Leeds can also adopt something similar to this?

Expires: November 2022 (19th)

Submitted By: Ash Sharma

Officer: Education

Area of Work: Access to Education

Updates

June 2020: Unfortunately there are no major updates to this work over the summer as a result of lots of LUU staff being furloughed (ongoing), as well as the LUU building and campus being closed. As staff return to work and the new Officer team settle into their roles this will be picked up again.

January 2020: Planned meeting with Director of Student Services delayed.

December 2019: Director of Digital, Academic Representation Team, Political Engagement Team and proposer all met to discuss and outline possible next steps. Proposer and PET working to gather student testimony on the issue. If you're a student who has been affected by the current email address format and would like to be involved in this work please get in touch with LUU.PET@leeds.ac.uk

December 2019: Proposer, PET and Director of Digital meeting to discuss 9th December.

November 2019: New Policy