Forums are one of the most powerful and versatile activities in CC. A well-run forum can stimulate a thoughtful exchange of ideas, motivate students to be involved, give the shy students a voice or act as a team workspace. In online courses, the forums may be the primary method by which you, the Instructor, build that sense of community which is so crucial to retention. Forums can be set up with groups, forum posts can be graded, and students can submit attachments to forum posts and replies.
See the faculty guide>Forums>Using Forums, for a thorough introduction to the different ways to use forums, how to write effective forum questions and a description of the 5 forum types and when to use each.
1. Log onto Cougar Courses and go to your course.
2. In the Contents area at the top, click on the topic where you would like to add the forum.
3. Once selected, scroll to the bottom of the topic.
4. Click the Create Learning Activity link at the bottom left of the topic.
5. In the list of Activities, click on Forum.
6. Enter a descriptive Name for the Forum.
7. Enter a Description of your forum and your forum prompts. You can use the HTML editor toolbar to format the text, add images, tables, links, etc.
Hint: Include specific instructions for the students in this section, regarding the subject
of the forum, the grading criteria and number of initial posts and replies you expect,
as well as the due dates for each.
Note: If using the Q & A forum type you must enter your prompts using the Add a Question button. (see Q & A forums below).
8. Select the Forum type. See the faculty guide>Forums>Using Forums for a description of each type.
• If you are using groups, refer to the Using Forums document and carefully read the forum descriptions and tips. Different forum types handle groups differently.
• If using groups with the Q&A forum type, see Using the Q & A Forum with Groups below for setup instructions.
9. Attachments: Determines whether students can add attachments to their post, and limits size and
number of these attachments.
10. Word count: Specifies whether the word count of each post is displayed, or not.
11. Subscription mode: Determines whether participants will receive email copies of forum posts.
12. Read tracking: If enabled, allows users to track read and unread forum messages.
This section can be used to warn and block students from posting more than a given
number of posts in a given time period.
This section allows you to determine how student posts are graded and to restrict grading to posts submitted within a date range.
Aggregate type: The aggregate type determines how the ratings for all of a student’s posts within the forum are aggregated into one score. You can rate each post, using a dropdown just below the post. The dropdown will display all points to the maximum assigned.
13. Select one of the aggregate types.
14. Restrict ratings to items with dates in this range: When selected, the rating dropdown will not be available for posts outside of the specified date range, preventing the instructor from assigning points for "late" posts. Students will still be able to view the forum and post outside of the range.