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Online Discussion Guidelines (adapted from Kim Riordan)

Discussion posts may generally fall into one of the following 3 types:

  1. Casual-friendly posts help to begin conversations and build community.
  2. Descriptive posts help to build understanding of content.
  3. Reflective-analytical posts tend to challenge thinking and content and take the learning to a deeper level.

You are encouraged to contribute all 3 kinds of posts throughout an entire discussion. Not all discussion is heavily reflective-analytical as this would tend to get quite boring. On the other hand, if all of the conversation were casual-friendly and never achieved much depth, it would not be a discussion.

In addition to considering the QUALITY of posts, also consider the TIMELINESS of both the "initial" posts and "response" posts (posts in which you respond to others in your discussion group).

To be considered fully engaged in the discussion, the participant will need to:

 
Type of PostCasual-friendlyDescriptiveReflective-analytical
Initial Initial posts should be at the "Descriptive" or "Reflective-analytical" levels.

  • Accurately reflect the content of the materials:
    • e.g., "So Bloom suggests we should be striving for higher levels on his taxonomy if we want students to reach a mastery level."
  • Identify your own experience relevant to the materials:
    • e.g., "Well, I have found when I had students create a toothpick bridge they were able to demonstrate and articulate their design choices, and why they were good or not."
  • Describe insights based on the integration of your experience and the materials:
    • e.g., "Because the toothpick bridge project was a chance for the students to create and apply what they had learned, I found they were much more engaged in the activity than if I had them do something more theoretical."


So a post may look like:

So Bloom suggests we should be striving for higher levels on his taxonomy if we want students to reach a mastery level. Well, I have found when I had students create a toothpick bridge they were able to demonstrate and articulate their design choices, and why they were good or not. Because the toothpick bridge project was a chance for the students to create and apply what they had learned, I found they were much more engaged in the activity than if I had them do something more theoretical.

  • Analyze and evaluate the materials and defend your evaluation:
    • e.g., "Bloom has "remembering" at the lowest level of the pyramid which indicates the learner would not be able to do something useful with the information. I can remember that I learned in high school biology class the following: "Kingdom, Phylum, Classes, Order, Family, Genus, Species." I remember this, but I can't tell you what I'm supposed to do with it. sad"
  • Project what your experiences mean for you in your professional or personal life:
    • e.g., "I can see that I will want to do more than just have the students memorize the material. They will need to do something useful with it to make it meaningful."
  • Identify insights and project how this could validate or change your professional or personal practices:
    • e.g., "Bloom is not suggesting 'remembering" is not worthwhile, he is suggesting if all I do is have students remember, they are are not going to have any mastery of my discipline."
  • Identify assumptions you hold that have been clarified, challenged, or affirmed:
    • e.g., "I've come to realize that my thinking was wrong regarding the notion that having the students memorize the biological classification would lead to them understanding why we have a classification. I'll need them to actually work with the classification tree to understand the relationships among the classes."


So a post may look like:

Bloom has "remembering" at the lowest level of the pyramid which indicates the learner would not be able to do something useful with the information. I can remember that I learned in high school biology class the following: "Kingdom, Phylum, Classes, Order, Family, Genus, Species." I remember this, but I can't tell you what I'm supposed to do with it. sad I can see that I will want to do more than just have the students memorize the material. They will need to do something useful with it to make it meaningful.

Bloom is not suggesting "remembering" is not worthwhile, he is suggesting if all I do is have students remember, they are are not going to have any mastery of my discipline. I've come to realize that my thinking was wrong regarding the notion that having the students memorize the biological classification would lead to them understanding why we have a classification. I'll need them to actually work with the classification tree to understand the relationships among the classes.

Response (to others)
  • Praise or criticism:
    • e.g., "I heart what you said about X, Y and Z."
  • Show a presence:
    • e.g., "I've read this and am thinking about it, not sure if I agree with you, but need to give it more thought."


So a post may look like:

"I heart what you said about X, Y and Z."

  • Recognition of agreement/disagreement (validate and explain or defend underlying reasoning or assumptions):
    • e.g., "I agree the focus of the practice should be on the client's goals."
  • Demonstrate further analysis:
    • e.g., "By focusing on the client's goals, the practice may be able to develop a positive reputation."
  • Demonstrate further insight:
    • e.g., "But now I wonder how much focus should be on the client's goals because the customer isn't always right. smile"


So a post may look like:

I agree the focus of the practice should be on the client's goals. By focusing on the client's goals, the practice may be able to develop a positive reputation. But now I wonder how much focus should be on the client's goals because the customer isn't always right. smile

  • Coherently and eloquently validate and explain, or defend underlying reasoning and assumptions.
    • e.g., "If I understand you correctly, you're suggesting an actor needs to become one with both the script and the moment in order to give a good performance. I think this means a good performance occurs when I no longer feel the actor is acting."
  • Seek to challenge and fully understand differences or similarities.
    • e.g., "But you said this can only come by working with a good director. I fail to see how a director has exclusive domain over an actor's ability to become one with the moment and the script."
  • Construct new meaning and application to professional or personal context.
    • e.g., "So what I think I need to do as a director is create an environment conducive to enabling my actors to become one with the moment and the script. This, of course, means having plenty of red M&Ms on hand. smile"
  • Identify insights and project how this could validate or change your professional or personal practices.
    • e.g., "The challenge in all of this is if I am successful in creating a conducive environment, the actors may think directors are not necessary because they won't realize what it takes to create a conducive environment."
  • Identify assumptions you hold that have been clarified, challenged, or affirmed.
    • e.g., "I had always assumed being a director meant I needed to direct. Instead, being a director means guiding the performance in its entirety."

So a post may look like:

If I understand you correctly, you're suggesting an actor needs to become one with both the script and the moment in order to give a good performance. I think this means a good performance occurs when I no longer feel the actor is acting. But you said this can only come by working with a good director. I fail to see how a director has exclusive domain over an actor's ability to become one with the moment and the script.

So what I think I need to do as a director is create an environment conducive to enabling my actors to become one with the moment and the script. This, of course, means having plenty of red M&Ms on hand. smile The challenge in all of this is if I am successful in creating a conducive environment, the actors may think directors are not necessary because they won't realize what it takes to create a conducive environment.

I had always assumed being a director meant I needed to direct. Instead, being a director means guiding the performance in its entirety.


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Last modified on 02/15/13 10:48 AM
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