Getting Started with Interactive Tools
Discover the differences among Blogs, Journals, Wikis, and the Discussion Board and how to use each tool effectively in your course.
Discussion Board Forums and Threads
Building a sense of community among students is crucial for a successful online experience. The Discussion Board is an important tool for interpersonal interaction and can replicate the robust discussions that take place in the traditional classroom. Discussions can serve a range of purposes.
A blog—a shorthand term that means web log—is a personal online journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public access and use. Most blogs also have some kind of commenting system, so that people can respond to and interact with one another. Blogs encourage students to clearly express their ideas and addresses the need to expand various aspects of social learning. Moreover, they are an effective means of gaining insight into students’ activities and provide a way to share the knowledge and materials collected.
The Journals tool offers students the opportunity to reflect on course content and communicate privately with you. You can use the tool to gauge understanding and guide students in their knowledge acquisition. Your journal comments can help students refine their writing and ideas.
Wikis are essentially very simple online databases, collaborative collections of information that use interlinked pages to present and organize the data. One main benefit is they can be easily updated and expanded to include new content, or edited to correct errors.