Internal - Faculty & Staff

Using Discussion Forums for Assessment

The Advanced Discussion Forum activity module enables participants to have asynchronous discussions. There are several forum types to choose from, such as standard forum where anyone can start a new discussion at any time; a forum where each student can post exactly one discussion; or a questions and answer forum where students must first post before being able to view other students’ posts. A teacher can allow files to be attached to forum posts.

1. Assessment Tool

Discussion boards can be used as assessment tools. For example, you can create a forum that requires students to respond to a question. Along with posting their own response, students are also required to provide feedback on the response of at least one of their peers.

2. Clear Expectations

Provide clear expectations for how discussions will be assessed.

3. Analyze Contributions

Analyze students’ contributions to a discussion to assess the students’ depth of understanding and conceptualization of ideas. Analyze:

  • the types of questions posed by the students
  • the types of responses given by the students
  • the depth of the observations between teacher and student and student and student