Monday, January 24, 2011

Discussion Boards in Blackboard

This tutorial will demonstrate how to create and administer Discussion Boards in Blackboard 9.1. To learn more about Blackboard, view the Discussion Baord section from the Blackboard User Guide.

Creating a Discussion Board

From any Content Page, you can click on the Discussion Board link.

Alternatively . . .

Click on the Tools menu and access the Discussion Board.

Create Forum

You can create a new Forum (or discussion board) or select an existing one. Notice,  you are given statistics on the number of participants in each discussion board.

Enter Forum Information

Be sure to write a meaningful name and description of the discussion board, especially if you have created more than one.

Forum Availability

Set availablity settings.

Forum Settings

Allow anonymous posts
Allow students to remove own posts
Allow students to modify own published posts
Allow post tagging (only instructors can tag post, but students can view them)
Allow students to reply with quote (like email)
Allow file attachments
Allow students to create new threads
Subscribe - Allow students to follow each other (like Facebook or Twitter)
Allow members to rate posts
Force moderation of posts (instructor controls posts... until they are OK'd by instructor, they are not seen by class)
Grade - Grade threads or forums . . . or don't grade at all.

Create Thread

You can create multiple threads within a forum. A thread will usually constitute one topic/assignment.

Thread Actions

Click on the chevron (circled) to access thread options.

Creating a Message

Each thread must start with a message (call to action). This lets the students know what to do in the thread. The thread will typically start with a question/scenario or comment, then invite others to respond.

Grading Discussion Board

If you selected the GRADE option, you will also see the Grade Forum (or Grade Thread) button on the screen.

Enter Grades

You can click on the posts to view all of the entries for each student. Click grade to enter the grade.

Submit Grades

When you grade, Blackboard will generate statistics in addition to allowing you to see student entries. Click edit grade to enter final grade.

Edit Grade

If you've attached a rubric, you will be able to view it while grading. Otherwise, enter numeric grade and provide written feedback for the student. Grading notes are used to enter periodic comments (perhaps weekly) to remind yourself of entries the student made in the discussion board. This is helpful if the discussion board project will last for multiple weeks.

View Discussion Boards Demo

This short clip (turn the volume up) covers discussion boards. The URL to share the link with students is:

If you need further help, please call the 24 hour Blackboard helpline at 202-274-5665 or toll free: 877-736-2585. 

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