D2L - Understanding Email

Last Updated: 08/09/2017


The Email tool allows you to send email from within Learning Environment. You can also organize received mail using folders and store email addresses using the Address Book.

The ability to compose an email message will be denoted by one of the three following icons:

Compose Message Image 1 Compose Message Image 2 Compose Message Image 2

How to Access Email Tool

Navigation Bar

Instructors who plan to use the Desire2Learn Email tool as their main means to contact students should add the tool to their course Navbar (learn about this process by visiting the Add a tool to the Navigation Bar tutorial). With the tool on the Navbar simply click on the Email tool to compose a message, as shown below.


From within the Classlist window, users have the ability to email other users. Use the user tabs to look at a specific audience (Student, Instructor, Auditors). To email from the classlist select the checkbox next to the desired users, then clicking on the Compose Message icon, as shown below.

Classlist Email Visual

*Note: Within the Classlist tool instructors have the ability to change how many users are displayed in the Classlist table by selecting display options from the corresponding drop-down menu, as shown below (maximum of 200 users per page). This feature is especially useful when an instructor wishes to email or page all students in a class from a single screen. When checking the select all checkbox, D2L will select only the users listed on the page. So, if a class has more than 200 students, instructors should copy their message as they'll also have to send it to the remaining students on the next page.

Enter Grades

In the Enter Grades section of the Grades area, users have the ability to email other users. This process consists of selecting the checkbox next to the desired users, then clicking on the Compose Message icon, as shown below.

Enter Grades Email Visual


Instructors have the ability to Email any group, while students can email groups that they belong to from the Groups section. This process consists of selecting a group or groups, then clicking the Compose Message icon, as shown below.

Groups Email Visual

Composing a Message

  1. Type the recipient's email address(es) in the To field. Click the Address Book icon at the top of the page to locate an address from your Address Book.
    • Note: Addresses will be pre-populated if the users were selected from the Classlist, Enter Grades, or Groups sections.
  2. Type a brief description of your email in the Subject line.
  3. Type your message in the large text box and add any content, if you wish, by clicking the Insert Stuff button.
  4. Attach a file, if applicable.
  5. If you are satisfied with your message, click Send.

Address Book

Recipients can be added to your email selecting them from the Address Book and then clicking the Add Recipients button.

The Address book can be filtered by selecting an option from the Filter By: drop-down menu. Some filter options are:

  • System Contacts
  • All Personal Contacts
  • Course
  • Group