Monday, June 11, 2007

Be Sure to Provide Specific Instructions on How Students are Expected to Interact Online

Why? We may assume that everyone knows how to interact in online communication but realize that many users are self-taught. Consequently, you should provide a handout on netiquette or create course specific policies for online communication. If you google “netiquette” you will find more than enough variations of netiquette rules. We prefer “course rules on online communication” so you can shape specific attitudes and establish a tone for all online communication. One that we encourage you to use to require students to change the subject line for all replies to a sender. All subject lines should include a few pertinent words to indicate the content of the correspondence. If you don’t do this, all responses in a Thread may look exactly the same and force you (and everyone else using the Forum) to blindly go through each response. All of us have had to go through our in-box looking through numerous emails with the same subject. Clearly and explicitly post your expectations for online communication for discussion boards, email, and chat.

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