Discussions and Reflections (and copy of Teaching License)

Discussion Participation -- 5 points total
  • Course Objective 1: Participate in an online course as a student including reflecting on participation and collaboration.
Week 1: see week's schedule
Week 2: see week's schedule
Week 3: see week's schedule
Week 4: none scheduled
Week 5: none scheduled
Week 6: none scheduled
Week 7: none scheduled

Leading a Discussion -- 5 points total
  • NACOL Standard D. The teacher provides online leadership in a manner that promotes student success through regular feedback, prompt response and clear expectations.
Week 3 lead a discussion.

Reflections -- 3 points each (9 total)
  • Course Objective 1: Participate in an online course as a student including reflecting on participation and collaboration.
Week 2: see week's schedule
Week 4: see week's schedule
Week 7: see week's schedule

Copy of Teaching License -- 1 point
  • Course Objective 6. Demonstrate you are a licensed or licenseable teacher (if you want certificate indicating you have completed this course, see Wisconsin State Statue 118.19(13)).
  • NACOL Standard A. The teacher meets the professional teaching standards established by a state-licensing agency for the teacher has academic credentials in the field in which he or she is teaching.
Week 2: Optional, submit only if you want certificate for having taken course. Certificate needed to teach online in a pk-12 public school. Send electronically as an attachment.

WHY???? Discussions and reflections allow both the online learner and instructor to interact with one another and course material. Discussions allow for discussants to reach deeper meaning of a text/subject while reflections require one to articulate what has been learned. Both are critical.

What does research and best practice say about discussions and reflections?

Develop guidelines for both and include in your Policy Handbook.

Here are some discussion "rules" to get us started. How would you change them?

Discussion "Rules"
  1. Say something of substance rather than echoing other peoples’ responses. If you wish to agree with someone, that’s okay but also add another thought to deepen the conversation.
  2. If you disagree with someone, state why and offer a rationale. Remember to address the issue, not attack the person.
  3. Add a new topic to the discussion when you change thoughts. Otherwise, reply to the post.
  4. Online discussions are not a competition to see who can post the most. They are a thoughtful, considered discussion of critical issues. State your point then back it up with information from readings, life events, etc. Push for deep understanding.
  5. Discussions take place over time, don’t wait until the last minute to make your posts.
  6. If you are going to have a long post, type it in MS Word or other word processor then paste into D2L.
  7. If you think the electronic discussions are taking too much time, bring the issue up with the group and instructor. Negotiation of expectations is typical.

Grading Criteria: Posts add to discussion, are posted in a timely manner, adhere to above discussion rules.