How to Ace Your Discussion Board Assignments

Many universities/colleges always strive to make their online discussion boards the best platforms where students and teachers can interact and share ideas freely. It’s, therefore, no secret that discussion board assignments make waves, especially in top universities and colleges.

Perhaps the best part about having online discussion board assignments and classrooms is that there’s no hand-raising, no vigorous head-nodding to agree with great points and stuff like that. In a sense, participating in online student discussion forums provide a more relaxed learning environment for students and teachers. Here, both students and teachers can share their ideas freely without worrying about their appearances or other forms of victimizations.

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As such, online discussion boards and assignments aren’t too different from other traditional degree programs. Student discussion forums have similar benefits as those who go to physical classes.

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These discussion board tips should help you get top marks in your discussion board assignments with minimal effort:

Steps to Pass Your Discussion Board Assignments

Joining and participating in online discussion board forums can actually help you learn a lot more than you would in a traditional class. At least that’s what instructors say. But even that’s only as true as the amount of effort that you put into these online discussion sessions.

Rightfully so, earning higher marks to show for your participation in online discussion boards isn’t easy. You must put in the work. Things can become even more challenging if you have discussion board assignments and have no idea how to go about them. Luckily, there are several online homework help services that you can use to up your grades.

Essay Axe ranks as one of the best online homework help services that guarantee your money’s worth. Visit essayaxe.com today and choose from a host of experienced, professional writers waiting to get started on your assignments. Essay Axe’s team of writers will ensure that you get the best homework help you need to ace your finals.

Like traditional classrooms, online classrooms and discussion boards also have certain protocols that participants must follow. As such, all participants of online discussion boards must respect these protocols and guidelines to ensure a more effective and productive forum.

That said, here are some of the top steps to use to ensure productive student discussion forums:

Do Your Background Study

As with all new assignments and tasks, you must do a thorough background study to enable you to grasp the whole concept of what your online discussion is about. Therefore, before you begin writing anything on a discussion board, ensure you go through all the learning materials.

A thorough reading of the content you plan to discuss should give you clarity on the discussion’s point of view. Doing this will add meaning and depth to the discussion posts that you participate in. In addition, it adds validity to all the points that you share on the forums.

Read the Instructions Carefully

After you’ve equipped yourself with the right background information, your next task should be to understand exactly how your instructor wants the discussion to be. Below are a few noteworthy pointers you should observe in this case:

  • Discussion type: this helps you to determine the direction of the discussion. You’ll want to know whether to compare, argue, provide a solution, or support a statement.
  • Discussion format: this stage determines whether your instructor has any specific formats to use in the discussion. This can be in the form of specific citation guidelines of other related formats.
  • Discussion elements: here’s where you determine whether there are any other specifications you need to follow, such as the word limit, the due date, specific sources, and time.

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  • Discussion criteria: this stage requires you to read on the grading scale thoroughly as instructed by your instructor. Knowing the criteria of the discussion in advance enables you to organize and divide your responses accordingly.

Write Aptly

Writing a discussion board rubric, for instance, requires you to incorporate your personal or professional experiences into your decisions. Generally, what you write in a discussion board can either add relevance to your discussion post or not make sense at all. You must, therefore, know when and how to quote ‘real-world’ experiences that allow you to think and apply different concepts apart from your online courses.

Remember, however, to use credible academic sources to help substantiate your experiences.

Use Precise Sheets

As time-consuming as it may sound, using practice sheets will eventually provide the clarity both you and your peers need. You may even need to type in your paragraphs on a word document of notepad to check their relevancy before submitting anything on the discussion board.

Doing this will provide you the opportunity to edit and possibly enhance your discussion points. It’s always advisable to proofread your discussion board assignments from a word document or notepad. It also allows you to apply appropriate grammar and punctuation before your final submission.

Write Distinctively

Generally, it’s only common sense to write your discussions in such a way that they provide food for thought for other students on the platform too. This allows you to keep everyone on the discussion engaged and challenged by your point of view.

Writing something unique on your discussion board template always catches the attention of other students and instructors as well. It can, therefore, drive more traffic and engagement into your discussion post. Additionally, you’ll come to see different perspectives on other students’ point of view.

Cite Your Sources

Anything you write on a discussion board template requires that you only use information from authentic sources. This will validate your point in the decision board and prove your arguments. Only ensure that you take points from credible sources only before you adopt them onto your writing. Doing so will help make your writing stronger in the discussion board too.

Use Assignment Help Online Services

As aforementioned, there are several online homework help assignments that you can use to relieve yourself from the stresses of writing on a discussion board. Therefore, if you ever need help with your discussion board online assignments, essayaxe.com has got you covered. Essay Axe assists students with online courses, including ones on discussion board assignments.

Discussion Board Etiquette and Tips for Success

like with traditional courses where students must follow certain etiquette in classrooms, online discussion forums must also behave appropriately. Below are a few tips that should help you to create posts and responses that guarantee you do well in your online course.

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When Posting on A Discussion Forum

Get to Know Each Other

Upon receiving an invitation to join a student discussion forum, your first post should generally be a form of introduction. Introduce yourself to your discussion board’s learning community and see if you can connect different life experiences to the course content.

Always try as much as possible to respond to topics raised in your discussion forum as it also enables you to identify with other members of the platform.

Use Simple Formatting

With formatting, it’s always best to keep things as simple as possible without compromising on the quality of your writing. You can do this by avoiding the use of fonts that may be too difficult to read. Generally, you want to ensure that everyone on the forum can read and understand your points easily and be able to follow the discussion.

Post with Clarity

It’s also best to express yourself as clearly as you can in your writing. That means the use of correct grammar, avoid using acronyms and slang and ensure that you always proofread all your writings. Where necessary, refer to dictionaries and other grammar sources to make your writing easily readable.

Avoid Jokes

It’s not always easy to know whether the person on the other end of the screen is joking or not. And that’s because you don’t always see their nonverbal communication. Unfortunately, online discussion prompts are no exception to this.

For that reason, you will need to avoid confusion in the class and risk offending others as well by avoiding jokes and sarcasm altogether when posting online.

Be Serious About the Assignment

Remember, online discussion board assignments must be taken seriously as all other courses. It’s always vital that you answer your writing prompt completely. Ensure, therefore, that you give some thought into what you want to write before you type anything.

When Responding to A Peer

Be Polite

Just because you’ll be interacting online doesn’t mean you should forget your manners. Ask for help politely, and thank your peers when they deserve it. Being polite to other students will help to create a strong community among the participants in the group and help everyone learn.

Be Substantive

Don’t start your response with insignificant statements like ‘Great post’ or ‘I really enjoyed your post’ or ‘I loved your post.’ Rather, it’s best to respond in such a way that recognizes what your classmate has explicitly stated. It’s also best to continue your response by adding to your original post or when presenting a different perspective. Generally, your response should continue, and not just to compliment the original post.

Respond to Prompts First

It’s only courteous that your first response is that of your instructor’s prompt. The instructor may request you to examine ideas and resources. Your development of connections to your course is also a vital factor to consider in this case.

Your instructor will encourage you to comment politely and supportively and course interactions with other participant’s responses in the discussion.

Provide Proof

Each time you respond to a post, it’s best to back up your statements with evidence. You can do this by including statistics and quotes from class readings or other additional research you have done on each post’s topic.

Ideally, you can do this by providing citations for books or journal articles and also post links to where others can find the information you’re referencing in your post. Remember, however, to include the work’s name, the author, and page number where you found the information.

Where to Go from Here

It’s highly probable that you probably already use online discussion boards. If so, then you can re-evaluate them and the necessary adjustments to improve your experiences. You can do with a class Netiquette Policy and involve everyone in setting a safe online learning environment for your class.

Generally, the practices mentioned above should help you create an active and productive online discussion forum.

Benefits of a Discussion Forum

With online discussion board assignments, you’ll find students reacting to content, sharing challenges, teaching each other, clarifying assumptions, experimenting, and owning new skills and ideas, among other things.

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Here are some benefits of participating in online discussion board forums:

Distance education and teachings

Distance education and teachings greatly extend classroom learning

Student autonomy:

Students have admitted to routinely discussing topics on their forums with friends, family, and colleagues outside their class before writing their comments online.

Individualization of learning:

Forum topics generally don’t have any time or length limits. Students in online discussion boards are usually free to continue their dialogs about their discussed topics outside of the discussion boards.

Encouragement of critical thinking:

Most forum topics are open-ended and specially designed to encourage students to take a stand on issues. Students must have organized thought and analysis of concepts that have been introduced in class. This allows students to add carefully considered reasons to back up their previous comments about certain views.

More democratic exchange:

As with any traditional class, there is always a group with dominant personalities and students who will feel more unmotivated and intimidated to speak. Therefore, you’ll find that discussions, even among small groups, don’t always allow equal time among students. With online forums, however, every student always has a voice that is heard by people who choose to read comments.

Flexibility and convenience:

With online discussion forums, you set your own schedule for the forum. These forums are also always available all the time, day and night, to accommodate participant’s school, work, and family demands. What’s more, you can access these forums from any internet connection provider and device across the world. Therefore, allowing students to participate even while traveling or when sick.

More time to frame responses and opinions:

Since the forum discussions occur online, students can add their input only when they feel prepared and ready to do so. Some may, therefore, choose to answer questions immediately, whereas others prefer to hear what others have to say first. Students are at no obligation to answer questions as they come. Rather, you find that most junior students prefer to lay back and wait to read the responses of cleverer, more experienced students.

Students find a context resource:

While some professions in the discussion forums may be somewhat isolated, they have their perks. For one, forums introduce students of different professions where some students can serve as resources throughout the course, and even into employment.

While some people may think that online discussion boards are a waste of time, they actually really help students and are very productive. But this is only as active as the participants in the group. Your discussion board assignments wouldn’t be as effective if you or your team members didn’t put enough effort into its success.

Alternatives to Discussion Forums

There are actually some good alternatives to online discussion boards that you can use at the college level. This can be especially beneficial for institutions that have very large online platforms. Learning activities should provide equal opportunities for interaction that also supports active learning.

Here’s a quick review of some of the best alternatives to conventional text-based asynchronous discussion forums like with discussion board assignments:

  • Piazza
  • Google Docs
  • VoiceThread

Synchronous alternatives

These online platforms are more equipped to help students to share ideas, topics, and concepts in real-time. Here’s a quick overview of the best synchronous alternatives to online discussion board examples:

  • Skype
  • WebEx
  • Blackboard Collaborate Ultra

Online Colleges with No Discussion Board

Most online schools must learn to focus on discussion board posts to improve their students’ and teachers’ interaction. Generally speaking, no institution can boast of having the best learning system if it doesn’t have an online platform where students and teachers can interact.

With discussion board assignments, for example, students can engage and share ideas more freely with teachers and receive genuine responses too. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a school that doesn’t focus on an online course platform where students and teachers can communicate and share ideas.

Having an online college no discussion board isn’t easy with the current education system we have today. In today’s job market, you also find that almost every office related job revolves around writing and communication. You must, therefore, learn to write well and present your data in an organized manner. Consequently, taking a shortcut and skipping writing and regular communications will likely hurt you in the long run.

Conclusion

From the excerpt explained above, it’s evident that Online discussion board assignments provide an excellent opportunity for students to learn from their peers. Discussion forums have created interactive and dynamic learning platforms that will eventually help you pass your course. Online discussion board assignments should help enhance a sense of community in the online world we live in currently.

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