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Structuring online discussions


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Structuring online discussions

  1. 1. Structuring Online Discussions<br />Janet Lenart, RN, MN, MPH<br />BNHS, School of Nursing<br />University of Washington, Seattle<br /><br />
  2. 2. Structuring Online Discussions<br />Created for health professionals who are using online technologies to teach others.<br />By Janet Lenart, RN, MN, MPH<br />Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing<br />University of Washington, Seattle WA 98136<br /><br />May 26, 2010<br />This project is supported in part by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) grant Faculty Development: Integrated Technology into Nursing Education & Practice Initiative<br />Grant number U1KHP09543<br />
  3. 3. Structure versus moderation of online discussions <br />Structure: a variety of elements that are organized into a cohesive whole to support the interaction; the nuts and bolts.<br />Moderation: facilitation of interaction that encourages dialogue and creates a learning community; the heart and soul.<br />
  4. 4. DiscussionStructure Moderation<br />
  5. 5. Structuring Online Discussions<br />
  6. 6. Who<br />Your decision <br />Recommendations<br />Number of students in a discussion?<br />Group students randomly or using criteria?<br />10 to 12 students maximum<br />Your course objectives and student characteristics will guide you in deciding how to group students.<br />
  7. 7. What<br />Recommendations<br />Your decision <br />Will you require participation in the discussion?<br />What percent of the course grade is appropriate?<br />What grading criteria will you use?<br />Requiring participation is essential to creating dialogue and a learning community.<br />One study demonstrated that 20% resulted in more frequent and meaningful participation than 10%. No additional benefit at 30%.<br />See the next slide for a grading rubric example<br />
  8. 8. A grading rubric<br />(Rovai, 2004)<br />
  9. 9. When<br />Your decision <br />Recommendations<br />Frequency and number of postings to be required?<br />Deadlines necessary for postings in order to create a conversation?<br />Specify the minimum number of postings and the maximum number of words (e.g. 200 to 300 words). Encourage additional posting but grade based on quality not quantity.<br />Give deadlines so a dialogue will be created (e.g. post by Wednesday and respond to peers by Friday). <br />
  10. 10. Where<br />Recommendations<br />Your decision <br />Where in the course will the discussion exist? E.g., a separate discussion each week throughout the course, or only in specific weeks?<br />Your course objectives, credits and content will guide you in deciding whether to create a new discussion every week or less often. To create a learning community and facilitate peer-to-peer learning, a discussion for the whole duration of the course is advised.<br />
  11. 11. References<br />A grading Rubric is found in Rovai, A. P. (2004). A constructivist approach to online college learning. Internet and Higher Education, 7, 79–93.<br />