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Interactive Tools in Blackboard

Discussions

Adding the Discussion Board from the Main Menu

  1. Click on the Discussion area from the main course menu.
  2. From the Discussion Board page, click on the Create Forum button.
  3. Complete the template with name, question text and customize as you see fit.
  4. Click on Submit.

Adding the Discussion from within a Particular Menu Item or Content Area

  1. Enter the specific area or module from within the main menu.
  2. Then scroll over the Tools tab (top of page) and select Discussion Board.
  3. From this page you can either link to a discussion board page, select a discussion board forum, or create a new forum (choice is with you, I recommend linking to the discussion board page).
  4. Then select Next.
  5. Based on your selection, complete the template that appears.
  6. When completed, hit Submit.

Add a Thread

  1. Click on the Discussion Board.
  2. Click on the name of the forum you wish to enter.
  3. Click on the Create Thread icon on the top of the page.
  4. Give your thread a name and post your comments in the box.
  5. Finally, hit Submit.

Use Reply Feature

  1. Click on Discussion Board.
  2. Click on the name of the forum you wish to enter.
  3. Now click on any of the Threads (click on the thread name).
  4. Click on the Reply button.
  5. Enter your comments in the box.
  6. Click on Submit.

Watch Discussion Board Tutorial

One tip that I have learned through facilitating and participating as a student in online classes is asking candidates to post their initial comments to the Discussion Board Forum no later than Wednesday or Thursday at midnight.
I am finding that when I have all posts due by Sunday at midnight, many candidates do not post to the forum at all until then, which leads to a limited conversation, and many have moved on to the next Module, without reading my comments.
Kathleen Grossi, Adjunct Faculty, Education Department
I like having a HELP! This is confusing...board. I played around with what to call it but liked this wording as it does not lay blame with the student. I say on the board that students can ask anything and others can answer. I allow anonymous post and it is located at the top of my discussions page. For a new online instructor it is so important to think about wording and making sure students are comfortable and not afraid to take risks.
Loy Riley, Adjunct Faculty, Education Department

Wikis

A Wiki is a collaborative tool that allows students to contribute and modify one or more pages of course related materials.

  1. Click on the content area where you would like to add this tool.
  2. Scroll over the Tools button.
  3. Select Wiki.
  4. Click on the Create New Wiki button.
  5. Complete the Create Wiki page (name, instructions, etc.).
  6. Hit Submit.
  7. You are now brought to a create link page where the new wiki is highlighted. Hit the Next button (on the bottom right hand side of the screen).
  8. You are now brought to the final page in the process (it is again named create link), where you can customize as you see fit. Now hit Submit.

Watch Wiki Tutorial

Journals

A journal is self-reflective tool for students. Only the student and the instructor are able to add comments to journal entries. However, journals can be made public by the instructor so all enrolled users can read all entries made to the journal topic. Group journal entries can be read by all group members and the instructor.

  1. Click on the content area where you would like to add this tool.
  2. Scroll over the Tools button.
  3. Select Journal.
  4. Click on the Create New Journal button.
  5. Complete the Create Journal page (name, instructions, etc.).
  6. Hit Submit.
  7. You are now brought to a create link page where the new journal is highlighted, hit the next button (on the bottom right hand side of the screen).
  8. You are now brought to the final page in the process (it is again named create link), where you can customize as you see fit. Now hit Submit.

Watch Journal Tutorial

Blogs

Blogs are an open communication tool for students to share their thoughts.

  1. Click on the content area where you would like to add this tool.
  2. Scroll over the Tools button.
  3. Select Blog.
  4. Click on the Create New Blog button.
  5. Complete the Create Blog page (name, instructions, etc.).
  6. Hit Submit.
  7. You are now brought to a create link page where the new blog is highlighted. Hit the Next button (on the bottom right hand side of the screen).
  8. You are now brought to the final page in the process (it is again named create link), where you can customize as you see fit. Now hit Submit.

Watch Blog Tutorial

Groups

With the group tool you can create formal groups of students to collaborate on work. You can manually select group members or allow students to self-enroll. Each group has its homepage with links to tools to help students collaborate.

Watch Group Tutorial