Revising my grading rubric for discussion forum participation

After three iterations of the course I’m teaching, I’m revisiting and potentially revising the grading rubric I’m using to assess learner participation in discussion forums.  Back in August, I described the types of discussions in which my students in COSC 1401 Introduction to Computers are asked to participate and posted the grading rubric for assessing their participation.  I have been using that rubric the last three terms (I’m teaching primarily 8 week terms; two last fall and one so far this spring).  But, it’s not quite a perfect fit to how the discussions have progressed and how I want to grade them.  So, I’m revising.  I’m interested in your thoughts on this rubric. Read more

Leveraging Quality Matters Certified Courses

Short version: An institution that facilitates and supports Quality Matters (QM) centered reviews of online courses could leverage those courses by licensing a QM certified course from the faculty developer on a semester-to-semester basis and distribute that QM certified course to any faculty – including or perhaps especially adjuncts – teaching the course.  For me, that would be a win-win-win solution for the institution, the faculty developer and all other faculty teaching the same course.

Long version and a few issues are described below.  After I explain all of this, please comment and tell me what sort of things I don’t know about QM or licensing issues etc that preclude an institution from doing this ;-) Read more

Assessing Online Discussions

I recently re/developed the rubric I use to assess learner performance in the online discussion for my “Introduction to Computers” course; I wanted a more generic approach suitable for many of the discussions in the course – particularly with the course going through a Quality Matters review.  I developed a holistic rubric with two primary criteria supported with a number of descriptors at each level of proficiency. Read more

Facebook Meme as Online Class’ Personal Introduction Assignment?

Lostock GralamTeaching an online class, I’m always looking for ways for students to introduce themselves in a method other than a discussion board post.  They typically don’t write anything spectacular, and after all is said and done, it is text.  I have seen folks use, and other online tools to have students create media that introduces themselves in some way to their classmates.  Tonight, I encountered a Facebook Meme that AJ (@sorry_afk) posted.  It was interesting enough that I decided to follow along; I don’t do that very often.  As I was finishing it, I thought this might be an interesting activity for students to do as a first activity in an online class.  For it to work though, some intentionality would have to be inserted.  My result, at least the image, for the meme is to the left, and the modified list of instructions for a first assignment are below.  The original that AJ posted to FB is at the bottom.   Read more

VWER: Future of Education in Virtual Worlds?

VWER January 6, 2011 Meeting(cross posted from

I attended the Virtual Worlds in Education Roundtable (VWER) Annual “First Meeting of the Year” for 2011 this past Thursday.  I believe this is the third year the VWER’s new year has begun with a panel discussion.  The stated focus of the discussion was on the Probable, Possible and Preferable Futures of education in virtual worlds.  Of course, the majority of the discussion focused on the first two.  The discussion was moderated by (using Second Life monikers) AJ Brooks and included Buddy Sprocket, Fleep Tuque, Anthony Fontana, Wainbrave Bernal, and Kenny Hubble.  So what’d the panel have to say? (with my thoughts mixed in throughout.) Read more

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