Student interaction and Community Best Practices

What Is It?

This addresses the opportunities students have to interact with the content, their peers, and their instructor, and how well the course design encourages students to become active learners and contribute to the online course community.

Who Can Use It?


How Do I Do It?

  1. At the beginning of the course, the instructor should provide an opportunity to have students self-introduce to develop the sense of community
    1. Create an Ice Breaker forum that allows students to introduce themselves and interact. Pose a few questions to create community such as where students are from, why they are in the program, etc.
    2. Create a blog where students can post personal information about themselves that others can react to. The blog can be used for reflection through the remainder of the semester as well.
  2. Provide information about being a successful online learner/student.
    1. If applicable, provide a self-assessment for students to determine how well they are prepared for the course.
    2. Post a Q&A about the course requirements that is open to students. This can be a forum or questions that are compiled into an FAQ for all students.
    3. Create a video outlining what you see as the most important aspects of being a successful student in your course. This will help you build a rapport with your students as well.
  3. Navigation throughout the online components of the course is logical, consistent, and efficient.
    1. Make sure that the course modules/weeks are organized the same so that students have a consistent view of the weekly requirements.
    2. Organize discussions so that they have a consistent look and structure.
    3. Provide a naming convention for items in your course. For example Week Two Discussion One [Name of discussion] and Week Two Discussion Two  [Name of discussion].
  4. Learning activities facilitate and support active learning that encourages frequent and ongoing peer-to-peer engagement.
    1. For every activity have a statement of the task to be completed where the desired outcomes are clearly stated, appropriate to the task, and reasonable.
    2. Provide any rules for collaboration including assigned roles, benchmarks, and expectations for participation in the discussion description.
    3. If using video or other multimedia to support your discussions, make sure to summarize the points students should look for in the video.
  5. The course learning activities help students understand fundamental concepts, and build skills useful outside of the course.
    1. Learning activities should help students understand basic concepts, but should also give students an opportunity for more detailed exploration an to use higher level skills.
    2. Try to relate learning activities back to real world observation, application, and problem solving. One simple way to analyze this for any assignment is to relate the assignment back to Bloom’s Taxonomy action verbs to determine which level most accurately describes the assignment.



Article ID: 104398
Mon 4/6/20 9:42 AM
Mon 7/25/22 2:35 PM