Monday, May 21, 2012

May 21, 2012

Good Evening Online Instructors,

This week I'd like to share with you some additional Teaching Tips on Discussion Board facilitation.  These tips come from Cheryl Anderson, our Online Health Care Management Program Chair.   Cheryl shares with us some great ideas for promoting early participation in the discussions, even participation in the discussions, and exemplar presentation in the discussions.  I hope you find her thoughts and insights as beneficial as I do.  If you have any questions or thoughts you'd like to add too, please just let me know.

Tips from Cheryl:
1.  "When the discussion board starts each week, I thank the first learner to post for being the first to post. Encouraging an early start to the discussions is a big positive."

2.  "As I am responding to posts, I will pick those who have no responses first. It seems that a discussion thread with  many posts gathers even more. This means that those who have no responses often do not get read. The same students are often in this 'ignored' group. If I start responding, there is a little momentum going forward. All students then feel included in the discussion."

3.  "I create an 'Exemplar' Discussion thread on the discussion board. I place this near the top of the discussion board. Every week possible, I invite learners who completed excellent assignments to post their assignment to this thread. I invite learners in the grade book as I am grading. It is up to the learner to share themselves. Almost all take great pride in doing this.

Posting exemplar work spurs others to see what is expected or what could be achieved. Those who are striving for excellence try to mirror this same type of scholarly work. Those that are chosen are rewarded for their accomplishments.

I post a personal note in the thread thanking each learner who shared for their nice work."

Thanks and have a great week!
Heather Thomton-Stockman
Online Instructional Specialist

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