LCIN Presentation: Effective Online Discussions


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a few tips for planning and facilitating online discussions.

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  • LCIN Presentation: Effective Online Discussions

    1. 1. presented by Cindy Underhill, Strategist, Learning Support Resources, Office of Learning Technology,UBC & Emily Renoe, Course Technologies Training and Support Liaison, Office of Learning Technology,UBC January 22, 2008 10am (PST) for the LCIN Spring Series Effective Online Discussions
    2. 2. Session Learning Objectives <ul><li>By the end of this session, participants will: </li></ul><ul><li>take away at least one new idea, perspective or strategy related to online discussion to apply in their own context. </li></ul><ul><li>We hope that participants will extend their personal exploration of resources, accessing the OnlineDiscussions Wiki and adding additional resources that they wish to share. </li></ul>
    3. 3. Session Breakdown Tips Resources Ongoing Discussion Grading Rubrics Types of discussion: threaded, blog, journal Creating discussion categories and topics Creating, viewing, posting and managing messages. <ul><li>Planning </li></ul><ul><li>Bloom’s Taxonomy </li></ul><ul><li>Learning Objectives </li></ul><ul><li>Presence </li></ul><ul><li>Community of Inquiry Model </li></ul><ul><li>Roles </li></ul><ul><li>Provocation </li></ul><ul><li>Good Questions </li></ul><ul><li>Case Study Example </li></ul>Recap Tools for Support Effective Discussions section 3 section 2 section 1
    4. 4. Effective Discussions Need... <ul><li>Planning </li></ul><ul><li>Presence </li></ul><ul><li>Provocation </li></ul>Slide
    5. 5. Planning… Slide
    6. 6. Learning Objectives: Course/Activity
    7. 7. Using Bloom’s Taxonomy in Developing Learning Objectives Bend, grasp, handle, operate, reach, relax, shorten, stretch, differentiate (by touch), express (facially), perform (skillfully) Psychomotor - involves perception, readiness, response, adaptation. accept, attempt, challenge, defend, dispute, join, judge, praise, assess, question, share, support, listen, attend to, react to Affective - involves emotional factors such as awareness, attention, motivation, interests and values. arrange, assemble, collect, compose, construct, create, design, develop, formulate, manage, organize, plan, prepare, propose, set up, rewrite, integrate, create, design, generalize <ul><ul><li>Creating – Is the learner composing, creating or designing something original? </li></ul></ul>appraise, argue, assess, attach, defend, judge, predict, rate, support, evaluate, recommend, convince, judge, conclude, compare, summarize <ul><ul><li>Evaluating – Does the learner assess the value of information based on established criteria and begin to talk like an expert? </li></ul></ul>analyze, appraise, calculate, categorize, compare, contrast, criticize, differentiate, discriminate, distinguish, examine, experiment, question, test, separate, order, connect, classify, arrange, divide, infer <ul><ul><li>Analysing – Does the learner break information into its components to see interrelationships and ideas? </li></ul></ul>apply, choose, demonstrate, dramatize, employ, illustrate, interpret, operate, practice, schedule, sketch, solve, use, calculate, complete, show, examine, modify, relate, change, experiment, discover <ul><ul><li>Applying – Does the learner use information in a new way? </li></ul></ul>classify, describe, discuss, explain, express, interpret, contrast, predict, associate, distinguish, estimate, differentiate, discuss, extend, translate, review, restate, locate, recognize, report <ul><ul><li>Understanding -- Can the learner explain ideas or concepts? </li></ul></ul>arrange, define, duplicate, label list, memorize, name, order, recognize, relate, recall, reproduce, list, tell, describe, identify, show, label, collect, examine, tabulate, quote <ul><ul><li>Remembering -- Can the learner recall or remember the information? </li></ul></ul>Cognitive Verbs to support measurable learning objectives Learning Domain
    8. 8. Another way to look at Bloom’s Taxonomy
    9. 9. Learning Objectives: Components <ul><li>3 Essential Parts: </li></ul><ul><li>Description of what the learner will do ( verb ). </li></ul><ul><li>Conditions under which this will happen. </li></ul><ul><li>Level of proficiency . </li></ul><ul><li>Example: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Think about one of the theoretical perspectives presented in the readings. In the discussion thread titled Theoretical Perspectives , express an opinion about the relevance of this perspective in understanding human behavior. Support your opinion with examples. </li></ul></ul>
    10. 10. Why are learning objectives important? <ul><li>Learning objectives are your guides to: </li></ul><ul><li>selection of content. </li></ul><ul><li>development of an instructional strategy. </li></ul><ul><li>development and selection of instructional materials. </li></ul><ul><li>construction of assessments/ evaluating student learning outcomes. </li></ul><ul><li>students monitoring their own learning. </li></ul>
    11. 11. Tips for Planning <ul><li>Think about how discussion fits into your course. What do you want learners to achieve? </li></ul><ul><li>Make learning objectives/ evaluation methods clear to students. </li></ul><ul><li>Consider how you will prepare students for participation. What skills/understandings do students need in order to be effective? </li></ul><ul><li>Balance workload (for you and your learners). What form will discussions take? Will they comprise the majority of the course content? Will they supplement the readings? </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid viewing discussions as an &quot;add on&quot;. </li></ul>
    12. 12. Presence… Slide
    13. 13. Community of Inquiry Model
    14. 14. Tips for Facilitation <ul><li>Summarize : pull together common threads/ areas of agreement, disagreement or emerging questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Moderate : to refocus the group, model effective facilitation, be aware of cultural references and their impact on the group. </li></ul><ul><li>Guide : content re-framing. </li></ul><ul><li>Prompt : using socratic questioning techniques. </li></ul><ul><li>Troubleshoot: technical, managerial, process. </li></ul><ul><li>Mediate: conflict, personality clashes. </li></ul><ul><li>Problem Solve : off topic posts, silent participant. </li></ul><ul><li>Reference: Facilitating Online Learning: Tips and Suggestions by Gail Mathews-DeNatale and Sue Doubler: </li></ul>
    15. 15. Provocation… Slide
    16. 16. Socratic Questioning Techniques <ul><li>Conceptual clarification questions— questions that get students to think about concepts behind their arguments: Why are you saying that? What exactly does this mean? How does this relate to what we have been talking about? Can you give me an example? </li></ul><ul><li>Probing assumptions —questions that get students to think about the beliefs that they base their arguments on:,What else could we assume? How did you choose those assumptions? How can you verify or disprove that assumption? What would happen if …? </li></ul><ul><li>Probing rationale, reasons, and evidence —questions that get students to think about the support for their arguments: Why is that happening? How do you know this? Can you give me an example? What do you think causes …? </li></ul><ul><li>Questioning viewpoints and perspectives —questions that get students to consider other viewpoints: What are some alternate ways of looking at this? Who benefits from this? </li></ul><ul><li>Probe implications and consequences —questions that get students to think about the what follows from their arguments, for example, Then what would happen? What are the consequences of that assumption? </li></ul><ul><li>Questions about the question —questions that turn the question in on itself, for example, What was the point of asking that question? Why do you think I asked this question? </li></ul><ul><li>Reference: Paul, Richard, Critical Thinking: How to Prepare Students for a Rapidly Changing World, 1993. </li></ul>
    17. 17. Case Study: Introductory Psychology <ul><li>Dr. Bill Pelz`s Introductory Psychology is a  survey course intended to introduce students  to the major concepts, theories and research findings in the field of psychology. (from Sloan-C's effective practices ). </li></ul><ul><li>Context: </li></ul><ul><li>- small community college </li></ul><ul><li>- class sizes of about 25 students </li></ul><ul><li>Focus for Case Study: student – led discussion (example) </li></ul><ul><li>- worth 50% of grade </li></ul><ul><li>- supports a culture of inquiry </li></ul><ul><li>- requires students to use higher order thinking skills </li></ul><ul><li>- matches well with teaching philosophy – highly constructivist. </li></ul>
    18. 18. Learning Objectives: Course Level <ul><li>Sample learning objectives for an Introductory Psychology course: </li></ul><ul><li>By the end of the course, students will be able to: </li></ul><ul><li>apply critical thinking to assumptions, claims, and common sense ideas about behavior. </li></ul><ul><li>analyze, synthesize and make connections between theory and ideas presented and real-world situations. </li></ul><ul><li>participate in a culture of inquiry by posing questions, supporting the discussion with evidence and facilitating dialogue. </li></ul>
    19. 19. Learning Objectives: Activity Level <ul><li>Sample learning objectives for an student-led discussion: </li></ul><ul><li>Students will: </li></ul><ul><li>Read and think about the concepts presented in the readings. </li></ul><ul><li>Analyze concepts in order to compose an original and provocative question for the class to discuss. Create a new topic thread in the discussion for each weekly unit. Post your discussion question at the beginning of the week and facilitate the discussion on your question. </li></ul><ul><li>Participate effectively in the discussion on at least 2 other discussion questions during each week. </li></ul><ul><li>Learning scaffolds: </li></ul><ul><li>Series of ice-breakers related to good question design, online discussion and facilitation. </li></ul><ul><li>Guidelines for developing a good discussion question. </li></ul><ul><li>Guidelines for facilitating effective discussions. </li></ul><ul><li>Evaluation: </li></ul><ul><li>Students are evaluated using a grading rubric. </li></ul>
    20. 20. What Makes a Good Discussion Question? <ul><li>Dr. Pelz: A good question: </li></ul><ul><li>requires respondents to use critical analysis skills. </li></ul><ul><li>encourages demonstration of both factual knowledge and comprehension of how it applies to the social behavior of people. </li></ul><ul><li>should not be a &quot;look up in the text&quot; question or &quot;what's your opinion&quot; question. </li></ul><ul><li>Your thoughts? </li></ul>Slide
    21. 21. What Makes a Good Discussion? <ul><li>Dr. Pelz: </li></ul><ul><li>3 things: </li></ul><ul><li>The quality of the question. </li></ul><ul><li>The quality of the responses. </li></ul><ul><li>The “depth” of the discussion. Are participants demonstrating higher order/ critical thinking? </li></ul><ul><li>Your thoughts? </li></ul>Slide
    22. 22. Example… <ul><li>. </li></ul>
    23. 23. Application Share (in Vista) … <ul><li>. </li></ul>Link to UBC and other rubric examples. Link to OnlineDiscussions wiki
    24. 24. Recap <ul><li>Plan effectively. </li></ul><ul><li>Be present and care . </li></ul><ul><li>Clearly state your expectations for learners and your role in the discussions. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop your skills as a facilitator. </li></ul><ul><li>Be provocative with a purpose (socratic questioning techniques help). </li></ul><ul><li>Reflect on successes and failures and use what you learn to build better discussions. </li></ul>
    25. 25. References and Resources <ul><li>Resources </li></ul><ul><li>UBCWiki: Online Discussion: </li></ul><ul><li>Planning: </li></ul><ul><li>Benjamin S. Bloom. Taxonomy of educational objectives. Published by Allyn and Bacon, Boston, MA. Copyright (c) 1984 by Pearson Education. </li></ul><ul><li>Meredith College’s application of Bloom’s Taxonomy to the design of learning objectives: (retrieved July 10th, 2007). </li></ul><ul><li>San Diego State University's Encyclopedia of Educational Technology: Search for Bloom's Taxonomy: revised. </li></ul><ul><li>Rourke, L., D.R., Anderson, T., Garrison, D.R., and Archer, W. Assessing Social Presence in Asyncronous Text-based Computer Conferencing. Journal Of Distance Education ,2001:∞ (accessed Jan. 9, 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>Best Practices: </li></ul><ul><li>Greenlaw, S. A. and DeLoach, S. B. (2003). Teaching Critical Thinking with Electronic Discussion: </li></ul><ul><li>Pelz, B. (2004). (My) Three Principles of effective Online Pedagogy. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks. Vol. 8 Issue 3: </li></ul><ul><li>Sloan –C: Bill Pelz’s Student Led Discussions: </li></ul><ul><li>Strategies for Promoting Online Discussion in Your Course: </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitating Online Learning: Tips and Suggestions: Mathews-DeNatale and Doubler: (accessed: January 7th, 2008) </li></ul><ul><li>Grading Rubrics: </li></ul><ul><li>Sloan-C: Frank McClusky’s Discussion Grading Rubric: </li></ul><ul><li>Cal State University: </li></ul><ul><li>Issues: </li></ul><ul><li>J. Freedman and M. Anderson. Lurking: A Valid Learning Style? Magna Publications’ Online Classroom: July 2007 Issue. </li></ul>