Since we seem to be allowing non-IT questions, I was wondering if we should also allow questions pertaining to students.

After all, seems to be a major part of our scope. Schools/colleges are also a sort of work-environment; they have similar problems.

Of course, this may open the flood gates for a whole bunch of rant-y questions by students.

What say?

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    I wouldn't say we're "allowing" non-IT questions, they're simply a necessary part of our scope.
    – Zelda
    Commented Apr 11, 2012 at 18:21
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    How about questions about working at schools or colleges (as a student employee, administrative staff, teacher, professor, etc)? In principle these should be in scope, but in practice, there are so many differences between academic and corporate workplaces that I think this site may not have sufficient expertise. Commented Dec 1, 2015 at 15:00

3 Answers 3


The premise of shrouding academia-related "work" questions under the guise of being a sort-of "workplace" seems iffy at best. They are different audiences with different goals, different process, different etiquette, and ultimately different solutions. You can't ask an academia question of a professional audience (the experts) and simply expect their answer apply to the different context. It may or may not; you simply don't know. You're asking the wrong audience.

Considering that we already have an Academia site, I would very strongly suggest keeping the two subjects separate.

  • Makes sense. I'll wait a while for the rest of the community to have its say, before accepting, though. Commented Apr 11, 2012 at 13:37
  • @Manishearth its been a year now, long enough to see what the rest of the community thinks before accepting now?
    – user5305
    Commented Apr 16, 2013 at 13:59
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    There is a spectrum, so "took place at a university" doesn't make it about academia qua academia. I worked as a technical person at a university (twice), and I had the same kinds of workplace questions and answers that I do now when working for a regular company. Even when I worked with students (infrequently), I did so in the way I work with users, interns, or contractors now. There are issues that are specific to academia, but it's a smaller set than "all questions involving academia in some way". Commented Jul 6, 2017 at 15:26

To the extent that the college and work environments are similar, the questions can be phrased to reflect that similarity, and should be allowed then, in my opinion. "How can I best prepare to get the most out of a meeting or lecture?" "What do I do when working on a class team project and someone isn't pulling their weight?" "What skills/courses are most important for job X?"

Questions that are specific to the school/college settings and don't have professional equivalents should be off topic, I think.


Some of the college/university related questions might be more appropriate for the Academia site. That being said, quite a few questions like "what major should I study" or "where should I go to college" seem to be off-topic for every site - and this one won't be any different.

  • I was more of talking about work-environment-type questions (also colleague), not on choosing stuff. Like "how should I deal with a bully", etc. This question applies to students as well, but the answer would be different. Commented Apr 11, 2012 at 4:35

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