Academia varies more than you think it does
Academic customs and procedures vary greatly across countries, universities, fields, subfields, workgroups and so on. Therefore always consider that what you assume to be general in your question or answer is not. It is very helpful if your question includes at least your field and your country.
"Here's my situation, any suggestions?" is not an answerable question
Sometimes questions on Academia.SE involve a user describing the situation they find themselves in, and asking a very general question (e.g., "any suggestions or advice?"). Instead of asking questions like this, you should highlight the specific question you want answered.
For example, ...
Give yourself time to proofread before submitting
Even if what you want to ask weighs heavy on your heart, don't just get your feelings out there. Collect your thoughts, consider what we need to know about your situation (and, more importantly, what we should not know, for instance specifics that could identify you), and ask a nicely formulated question in ...
Write one question per post
If you have several questions about a problem or situation, but the questions can be asked independently, please split them up into multiple posts.
There are several reasons for this:
From Meta.SE: "That way it's easy to select a correct answer. If you ask several questions in one question you risk having answers that are both ...
Make posts better, but don't impose your personal style
Usually we try to leave style up to the author of the post, and edit mainly for spelling/grammar, clarity, and readability (e.g. break up walls of text).
If you have a preferred style for your own posts, that's great, but it's not necessary to impose that on other users' posts.
Don't take constructive feedback personally; see if your post can be improved with some editing
Stack Exchange is designed around being helpful, and the people here who are volunteering their time to answer questions are doing it because they want to answer them, and be helpful.
Close votes or other suggestions are not judgements on you, your character, or ...
Remote teaching, studying, and exams
General and Other
Tips for transition to online classrooms given university shutdowns in response to COVID-19
How to get students to use the course forum?
What makes an online course a valuable learning experience for a student?
How much work is preparing a MOOC-ish course
How should faculty implement STEM classes that ...
Avoid edits to "on hold" questions that will never be reopened
Editing a post that is "on hold" pushes it into a review queue for reopening.
If you make cosmetic edits to a post that is "on hold" and is irredeemable (is inherently off topic for the site and won't be reopened), then it just wastes reviewer time: people have to review your edits if you have ...
The mechanics of moving comments to chat
If a post received twenty comments in three days, an automatic moderator flag is raised.
Moderators can move comments to chat only once. After this, they can only delete comments.
Comments moved to chat are not deleted, just less visible. Chat is public and permanent¹. Information is not lost there.
Chat allows for ...
Edits bump posts
Keep in mind that edits bump posts back to the front page. It's not a big deal to bump recent posts, and also not a big deal to bump old posts if it's only a few.
But if you ever have the urge to edit 100 old posts all at once, it's probably a good idea to ask about it on meta first. Many users don't like when the front page is full of ...
The answers to many problems depend on individual factors to some extent and you (or the reader) has to be the final judge whether an answer really applies to their problem. This is inevitable and not a problem per se. However, if we expect potential answers to be dominated by such individual factors, we put the question on hold. There are two main ...
Add Missing Body Questions
Sometimes, an asker will put a question in a title, but never actually put the question in the body, treating the two as though they were a single piece of prose.
For readability, it is best that both the title and the body be able to stand alone. Thus, it is good practice to add such a "missing body question" into the ...
Think about how to make your question a useful ongoing resource for the internet
This generally means thinking about what is general about your question. You may have a problem that is highly specific to your situation but think about how can it be generalised so that the answers will be helpful to others.
Basically, stack exchange is here to make the life ...
Leave the problems you're not certain how to fix alone.
If a post has multiple things wrong with it, some may be easier to fix than others. Fix only the problems that you are certain that you have a good solution to, and leave the others for later.
Doing this makes an incremental improvement and easy approval. If your edits stretch too far, however, it ...
"I couldn't find a better SE site for this question" is not necessarily a reason to ask it here
The help center describes what kinds of questions are considered on-topic here, as well as some kinds of questions that are outside the scope of this site (as defined by the community).
We welcome your on-topic contributions. But, if you ask a question that is ...
What I look for in answers: (i.e., what I typically upvote)
A neutral, down-to-earth tone
A fresh take on a question (i.e., don't make your answer start with "I agree with XY")
Substantial answers (very short answers are not typically very useful to me)
A user that, based on her/his bio and SE habitus, seems trustworthy to answer the question
Sources, if ...
Fix all the problems in the post
Try to fix everything that is wrong with the question all at once. For example, if you are editing a question to fix a grammar error, also check if maybe some tags are not applied correctly and remove those, remove thanks and greetings, etc. (See the help center). If the author of the post has provided new information in the ...
Don't engage in edit wars
If your edit is rolled back (either by the original author of the post or another user), don't get in an edit war.
If the edit is minor, let it go.
If the edit is substantial and you think the user may have reverted your edit accidentally, or without understanding why you have made it, you can leave a comment explaining your ...
Be aware of culturally different spellings and word usages
It is well known that there are different, but correct, spellings for certain words. Examples are color and colour, behaviour and behavior, analyse and analyze. An editor should not change the author's version of the spellings to their own.
However, it may be acceptable to make the spellings ...
Other questions and resources pertaining to the COVID-19 crisis
In this time of crisis, would the journals Nature and Science prioritize papers about COVID-19?
Has the rate of papers uploaded to arXiv changed due to Covid-19?
How does the COVID-19 crisis affect durations of peer review and editorial handling?
Acknowledging local government for ...
What exactly is a shopping question?
A shopping question is a question that appears to seek help choosing, finding or assessing
an individual journal,
an individual publisher,
an individual university,
an individual academic program,
an individual field,
an individual research topic,
an individual funding agency,
a commercial online service,
In some fields like computer science, conferences act as publication venues: you submit papers, they get peer-reviewed and disseminated. In most fields this is not the case and publishing your work in written form and presenting it at a conference are two different things.
The duration of the peer-review process varies greatly across fields, ...
Don't run, Walk!
Gaining reputation may be something really interesting for the low-experienced users. They may try to add to their reputation by posting numerous questions or answers which do not have any meaningful content. This may probably reduce their reputation or cause down-votes to their posts. If you take a look at users with higher reputation, you ...
Graduate Admission and Studies
How should I deal with discouragement as a graduate student?
How does the admissions process work for Ph.D. programs in the US, particularly for weak or borderline students?
Graduate school admission with a degree in a different field
I've been admitted to multiple PhD programs, how should I choose between them?
Suggested edits by editors with <2k rep
If you have less than 2k rep, all of your edits have to be reviewed by multiple reviewers. Also, further edits to the post are blocked until your edit has been reviewed and either applied or rejected.
That is another reason not to suggest a huge number of edits all at once, and to make an effort to fix everything ...
Look before you leap.
The best way to avoid having your questions placed on hold is to know what a good question looks like. And the best way to find out is to look at good questions. Click on a tag related to what you want to ask, and see what's already there—and what's been highly upvoted.
I don't know if this question asks about what we should look for or what we are looking for. I ran this query and extracted the answers that received 100 votes or more*.
Here are the links to the best voted answers to date in decreasing order of vote count:
To contact a site moderator, you can
Reply to a message received from the "moderator message" system. The only "trick" on the mod message system is that the messages need to be done in turns, alternated between mod team and user. That means that if the mod team does not send a reply back to the user, the user will not be able to message the team again. The ...
Use tags that are relevant to your question
When tagging your question, go by what the question is actually about, not by what it is only related to. This way, you can help future users to find questions addressing their problems.
For example, almost every question on this site is somewhat related to research, because that’s what academians do. If you are ...