The student and faculty guide to collaborating in Slack

Use this template to create your own community guidelines and preserve productivity

An illustration of students and faculty working from home
Image Credit: Robert Samuel Hanson

Adapting to a virtual learning environment can pose a bit of a learning curve for professors, faculty and students alike. Many of our own customers have suddenly found themselves transforming Slack into their distance-learning hub, where they manage everything from student services and classroom lectures to academic operations, right down to student government.

To make this transition smoother and help everyone grapple with the realities of the new digital campus, we’ve put together this basic template on how to best communicate and collaborate with each other in Slack. Feel free to copy and update these guidelines and share them with your staff and students. We highly recommend pinning your post to a #team or #announcements channel so that it’s maximally accessible.

Guidelines and best practices for collaborating in Slack

Set yourself up for success 
  1. Fill out your profile and upload a profile picture so people can recognize you in Slack
  2. Manage your notifications to reduce information overload and maintain your focus
Etiquette and community guidelines 
  1. Mind the channel: Review channel purpose and topic before chiming in
  2. Understand public and private channels
  3. Be a good citizen of Slack: Ask and answer questions, assume best intent, try not to sidetrack conversations
  4. Respect online hours of operation (for example, for #office-hours channels) and encourage posting asynchronously to keep conversations moving 
Team communication best practices 
  1. Format messages so that they’re easier to read
  2. Use emoji reactions liberally to acknowledge messages while keeping channels tidy 
  3. Don’t forget to take it off Slack sometimes: Meet face-to-face using voice and video conferencing apps or Slack calls 

*Use this post as a template: Copy, update and share it with your team in Slack

Join us on Wednesday, March 18, for a free webinar tailored to all of you who work in higher education. The session is called “Create your digital campus with Slack.” Register now.  

For more tips on working and learning remotely in Slack, check out these resources:

If you’d like some personalized help around using Slack with your suddenly remote team, we’re happy to hop on a quick call with you. Click here to schedule a time.


Slack is the collaboration hub, where the right people are always in the loop and key information is always at their fingertips. Teamwork in Slack happens in channels — searchable conversations that keep work organized and teams better connected.