BUILDING AN ONLINE LEARNING COMMUNITY
Participants will understand: 1. Blogs and discussion boards can be an effective medium for sharing information on a variety of topics. 2. The importance of expressing and sharing practical easy to implement learning strategies among colleagues. 3. Sharing interpretations of concepts with others often clarifies and deepens understanding.

 

Related Misconceptions:
1.    Online learning environments cannot effectively facilitate learning.  2.    Student and teachers cannot effectively communicate in a virtual learning environment. 

 

Essential Questions
Overarching Questions: 1. How can the increased use of social networks be used by educators to build virtual learning communities? Topical Questions: 1. How can a virtual learning environment be used to supplement the face‐to‐face learning experience? 2. How can open ended questions or prompts be used to promote discussion in a virtual learning environment?

Performance Task
 

Building an Online Learning Community (group activity)
Designing Performance Assessments – GRASPS Model
Goal: The goal is for participants to recognize the value of promoting discussion in a virtual environment. Role: Your role is to contribute comments/questions(prompts)/responses that will facilitate a discussion within an online environment. Audience: The audience is your fellow workshop participants. Situation: The challenge is to become more aware of the necessity to facilitate discussion rather than assuming it will happen automatically. You are tasked with facilitating the discussion by responding to one or more of your fellow participant’s questions with both a comment and an additional question. You are also challenged to see the value of the discussion platform from both the student and teacher perspective. Product Performance and Purpose: The product will be discussion board postings which model authentic discussion that demonstrates using open ended questions to promote conversation. Standards and Criteria for Success: Each participant’s postings should be well thought out and thought provoking. Use the rubric provided to evaluate your participation.

 

This performance task addresses the following standard(s): Communication and Collaboration Use of digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. a. Students interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media. This performance task addresses the following facet(s) of understanding: Application ‐ promote conversation in a new setting Empathy ‐ be attentive and responsive to other’s opinions/thoughts Explanation ‐ demonstrate an understanding of digital literacy Interpretation ‐ acknowledge a personal responsibility for the promotion of digital literacy Perspective – evaluate the discussion process from both student and instructor viewpoint.

  Six Facets of Understanding 

 

Module II – Facilitating Virtual Discussion

 
Group Activity: Post your comments to the discussion board topic "What role should instructors play in creating digitally literate students?" Comment on at least one of your fellow participant's responses. Ask at least one of your fellow participants a question designed to elicit a more in depth response, further explaining their initial comment.
 

 

Participants are required to respond to at least one question posed by a fellow participant. It can be any question, not necessarily a question specifically directed to you.
 

 

Independent Activity: Self-evaluate your discussion board participation using the assignment rubric included. Submit the completed rubric to the instructor as an email attachment using the mail tool.

 

   

  Overall

0
Unwilling to experiment using an online communication platform.

1
Exhibits a willingness to   communicate using the blog platform.

Score

Building An Online Learning Community

         

   
Technology Use

1
Demonstrates an inability to use the discussion tool.

2
Demonstrates an ability to effectively use the discussion tool.

3
Demonstrates an ability to effectively use the discussion tool. Demonstrates a willingness to assist others with the use of the tool.

Score
 

 

 
Content

1
Comments do not adequately respond to discussion prompt(s).

2
Posts are a clear indication of reflection on the assigned topic(s). Demonstrated an ability to effectively utilize prompts to facilitate discussion.

3
Posts are a clear indication of reflection on the assigned topic(s). Demonstrated an ability to effectively utilize prompts to facilitate discussion. Scholarly references are included to support the shared viewpoint.

Score
 

 

 
Effectively Conveys Message

1
Commented and responded minimally, as required.

2
Demonstrated the ability to make thought provoking comments and responses.

3
Recognized the necessity to make thought provoking   comments and responses, as well as ask questions in order to sustain discussion.

Score

 

                         
 

 
Grammar/Spelling

0
Numerous errors found in grammar, spelling or usage that distract the listener/viewer.

1
A few errors found in grammar, spelling or usage that distract the listener/viewer.

2
No errors found in grammar, spelling or usage that distract the listener/viewer.

Score
 

 

 

Total Score

/12