USFMobile Push Notification Messaging Guidelines

Below is guidance for owners and delegated users of push notification messaging channels when generating new push notifications messages for USF faculty, staff and students.


These guidelines must be adhered to when creating and sending new push notification messages to students, faculty, and staff via a USFMobile channel and ensure that:

  • All messages are appropriate, informative and relevant to that channel;
  • All notifications are relevant to USF students, faculty, and/or staff;
  • USF notification frequency to students, faculty, and staff is managed and targeted so as not to overwhelm audiences with excessive communications.


Push Notifications are short messages sent through an online platform called the Modo App Center and received via the USFMobile app on an individual’s personal phone/mobile device.

Channels are a medium for sending targeted push notification messages to a specific user group within the USF community. Some channels require potential recipients to opt-in; while others (for example: New Student Orientation channel) target messages to all users of a specific USFMobile App persona(s). USF students, faculty, and staff may opt-in to receive messages from the specific channels. For example, a faculty member could opt-in to Bon Appetit’s channel to receive information about campus events hosted by Bon Appetit, as well as notifications about special opening/closing hours. 

Only Channel Owners and their delegates are authorized to create and send messages. These owners should be faculty, staff, or vendor representatives of USF. The USFMobile team will create the channel and delegate the responsibility for a channel to owners; and owners are solely responsible for ensuring the content, timing, and frequency of messages are appropriate and adhere to these guidelines. 

How do I request a new opt-in channel and/or access to send messages to a channel? 

Submit a request to the ITS Help Desk: 

  • In the Service Now ticket, include:
  • Subject “USFMobile: New Opt-In Channel”;
  • The goal of the channel;
  • Justification for the channel (i.e., why should these messages be sent using push notifications rather than another form of communication such as email);
  • A draft name and an identifiable purpose;
  • Identify the target audience of USF students, faculty, and/or staff;
  • The applicant should indicate that he/she has read and understood that all messages must meet all requirements stated in this document.

Your request will be considered within 30 days of receipt by the USFMobile Team (made up members from OMC and ITS), and in consultation with the requesting division. If approved, ITS will work with you to create the final opt-in channel and delegate channel ownership to the appropriate users.

Procedure to Send Push Notification Messages

Once delegated as a Channel Owner, that user will be given access to and training on the Modo platform by the USF ITS Mobile team.

All channel owners must adhere to the USF Electronic Communications Policy.

Note: The maximum number of push notification messages that can be sent out per day per opt-in channel is 1.

Message Criteria

All messages must meet these criteria: 

  • Related to USF – Should be directly related to USF and its body of students, faculty, and staff. For example: “Are you a new student? Join the University Ministry tomorrow for our New Student Retreat. Registration is open until 2:00 pm today!
  • Actionable – The notification and information are related to an action the student could take. For example, “Spaces are still available. Register Here!"
  • Relevant to the channel – A channel must only send notifications that are directly relevant to that channel. For example, the Bon Appetit opt-in channel should not send a push notification message about an upcoming University Ministry event.
  • Time-sensitive – Each notification should have some urgency to it or be time relevant and should reference a specific date. Note: No message duration should exceed a 1 day or 24 hour period. *In exceptional circumstances, a channel owner can provide special justification to create messages with a duration beyond the above stated time limit. For example, the Bon Appetit channel owner may send the following message with an extended duration: “Special hours on Monday, Feb. 17, President’s day: ... “.
  • Optional: Messages may include related resources. For example, a relevant hyperlink or image.

Examples of types of notifications that do satisfy the policy

GoUSFca Channel

  • Reminders to attend GoUSF virtual workshops
  • Reminders about Benefit enrollment deadlines
  • GoUSF Wellness events (GoMoveChallenge)

Examples of types of notifications that do not satisfy the policy

Bon Appetit Channel

  • The daily menu
  • Emergency notifications – these are handled by Public Safety in a different system
  • Communications to prospective students – these are handled by SEM via Slate
  • Individual one-off personal communications
  • Academic related communication, as these are handled by Canvas