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Online Discussions, Guidelines and Suggestions


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Basic guidelines and suggestions for online discussions.

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Online Discussions, Guidelines and Suggestions

  1. 1. online discussions
  2. 2. <ul><li>Online discussions serve the same purpose as discussions held during face-to-face classes. These discussions allow us to question and investigate concepts and ideas relevant to the course, to share ideas and experiences, and to come to a better and more thorough understanding of those concepts and ideas. </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>One goal of online discussions is to reach a shared meaning. In other words, we may try to reach a consensus, or we may simply want to be able to identify multiple, and often opposing, facets of a topic. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Ask questions </li></ul><ul><li>Respond to questions </li></ul><ul><li>Share your knowledge and expertise </li></ul><ul><li>Provide suggestions </li></ul><ul><li>Give examples and non examples </li></ul><ul><li>Support the postings of others in the class </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Question is thoughtful, directly related to the content and reflects analysis of content. Subsequent question(s) move the discussion forward, encouraging others to analyze and support their points of view </li></ul><ul><li>Question helps deepen understanding of the topic. </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>What are the strengths & weaknesses of…? </li></ul><ul><li>What do we already know about…? </li></ul><ul><li>How does…tie in with…? </li></ul><ul><li>Explain why…. </li></ul><ul><li>Explain how…. </li></ul><ul><li>How does…effect…? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the meaning of…? </li></ul><ul><li>Why is…important? </li></ul><ul><li>What would happen if…? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the difference between…and…? </li></ul><ul><li>How are…and…similar? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the best…, and why? </li></ul><ul><li>What are some possible solutions for…? </li></ul><ul><li>Compare…and…with regard to…. </li></ul><ul><li>How does…effect…? </li></ul><ul><li>What do you think causes…? </li></ul><ul><li>What is a new example of…? </li></ul><ul><li>How would you use…to…? </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Thoughtful responses examine and analyze major points and provide comparisons with other ideas. </li></ul><ul><li>Suggestions of analogies or metaphors help in developing a better understanding. </li></ul><ul><li>Personal experiences, prior learning, or interpretations contribute real-life examples </li></ul><ul><li>Additional resources (e.g., websites, books, journal articles) related to the question or comment help further our knowledge </li></ul><ul><li>Practical advice helps us see the topic in context. </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>Post often to discussions, but don’t dominate the discussion. Everyone has something to say. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t wait until the last minute to post. Distribute your posts throughout the discussion period. </li></ul><ul><li>Support your opinions with examples or quotes from other resources. </li></ul><ul><li>Tie in your own experiences. </li></ul><ul><li>Remember to post your questions, too. Or ask others for more information. </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>Try to refrain from using abbreviations. Even common acronyms may not be understood by everyone. </li></ul><ul><li>You may want to type your responses in a word processor, then copy and paste in a message. That way, you can check for spelling and grammatical errors prior to posting. </li></ul><ul><li>Express your ideas fully, but brevity is also important. We all engage more with shorter postings rather than large blocks of text. </li></ul><ul><li>Remember to separate paragraphs with blank lines, use an easy-to-read font, and maintain good text/background contrast so that your posts are easy to read. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Participate! </li></ul><ul><li>Remember that you will need to write a reflective journal entry on five (5) of the discussions, so you want to engage in the discussions so that you can write meaningful and insightful journal entries. </li></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>I try to respond to student posts during each discussion. I don’t respond to every posting, but do add comments and questions throughout the week based on how the conversation is progressing. </li></ul><ul><li>I read all of your posts and will post grades for the discussion within one week after the end of the discussion. </li></ul>
  12. 12. <ul><li>You have the opportunity to earn two (2) points for five discussion topics, for a total of ten (10) points. </li></ul><ul><li>To receive two (2) points for a discussion, your postings need to be thoughtful, substantial, high quality, and add to the discussion. If your postings tend to be superficial, simply agree with prior postings without adding further insight or detail, or do little to move the discussion forward, you will receive zero (0) points for that discussion. If your postings lie somewhere in-between, then you will receive one (1) point for that discussion. </li></ul>