The purpose of this resource is to model an example of how to convert a worksheet style face-to-face tutorial/seminar/practical to an asynchronous online format. 

This may involve students individually working through the worksheet which may require them to:

  • solve calculation and process problems
  • analyse data and/or
  • summarise and explain findings.

Students learn through exploring problems, proposing and testing conjectures, developing solutions and explaining their ideas.

face to face vs onlien

Approach

A significant change in facilitating these activities online is based on the asynchronous approach, moving the class from a 1 or 2 hour block of time to running over multiple days. This approach provides students set times during the week to try questions individually, ask questions about concepts they find difficult, engage in 'peer instruction' to discuss concepts with other students, receive clarification and explanations from tutors and to review their own answers against a provided solution. For facilitators, this change means they will need to engage with the class at multiple set times during the week, for shorter durations to support student engagement and provide feedback. 
 
The approach includes creating a discussion board for each group, providing students with access to the worksheet to attempt the questions individually and then giving them the opportunity to post any questions to the appropriate thread and optionally respond to other students questions. The tutor would respond to the questions and at the end of the week provide solutions for students to review their own answers against.

This approach will be new for most students, facilitators will need to provide guidance for students in how to engage in this environment, including:

  • The timeframe for asking questions, receiving tutor responses and when the solutions will be posted.
  • How to post questions about handwritten working/diagrams (photos).
  • Giving all other group the opportunity to attempt questions by not posting full solutions.
  • How to engage with other students to discuss concepts.
  • How to draw on the course materials for help in how to develop answers to the set questions.
  • When to expect responses from their tutor/facilitator
  • Where to find help   

Note: Marking does not need to be enabled but could be considered to encourage students to engage with the group discussion and help achieve the learning outcomes.

Preparation

  1. Create a digital copy of the worksheet (view an example worksheet) and upload it into the weekly/module folder within Learning Resources in your Learn.UQ (Blackboard) course site.

Tip: If your files are quite large or include images, you can break them down into multiple smaller files (i.e. part 1 and 2). Refer to the Create a Small File Size guide.

  1. If required, create a group/s containing the students who will be participating/contributing online and advise students of their allocated group. Alternatively you may be using tutorial/seminar/practical groups that are already available in Learn.UQ.
  2. Enable Discussion Boards for each group you created or alternatively in the required  tutorial/seminar/practical groups.
  3. Create a forum template for each weekly tutorial with a thread for each worksheet question. Copy the forum into each group.

worksheet thread examples

Ensure you include the following information in the forum description:

  • The worksheet will be located within the Learning Resources folder in Learn.UQ (Blackboard).
  • Students can access their group discussion board in their Learn.UQ (Blackboard) course site. Note, this discussion board is separate from the course discussion board.
  • Student question posts will be required by a set time to allow the tutor/faclitator time to review and answer questions.
  • Student may respond to other questions posed by their peers by the deadline. This encourages students to consider different approaches and explain their ideas, as well as reducing the reliance on tutors. Articulating their understanding of concepts will also benefit the students understanding and learning. 
  • Tutor/facilitator question responses will be posted by a set time and the thread will not be monitored after a set time.
  • Remind students that staff will not be monitoring the discussion boards 24/7 and will review the boards at the specified times.
  • Advise students that they should subscribe to the forum to ensure they are notified of posts when they occur.
  • Set expectations around student behaviour, language and fairness, and refer students to the UQ Student Charter for these expectations. This includes not posting questions solutions to give all students an opportunity to try questions themselves.
  • Recommend to students to include photos of the parts of the calculation they are having difficulty with in their post.

Example forum description:

Hi everyone,

This week you will be attempting the Descriptive Statistics II questions. Start by downloading the worksheet (located within the Week 3 folder in Learning Resources) and attempting the questions on your own. If you encounter any problems or require clarification, please post your questions in this thread by 11:59pm AEST on Wednesday 11 March. You can also respond to questions posed by your peers and are encouraged to post images showing where in the calculation you are having difficulty.

Ensure you click on the forum Subscribe button to be updated via email of any new posts. This thread will not be monitored 24/7 and question responses will be posted by 12pm AEST on Thursday 12 March. The answer sheet will be posted by 5pm AEST on Friday 13 March. After this point, this thread will not be monitored. 

It is expected that you will adhere to the UQ Student Charter at all times while posting in this thread and allow all students to attempt the questions before the worksheet solutions are posted on Thursday. 

Best of luck,

John

Delivering the Activity

What staff need to do:

  1. Navigate to the appropriate forum and thread on the review day (i.e. Thursday morning).
  2. Respond to student questions and write a short summary post of all discussion that occured over the week, including common incorrect answers and why they were incorrect by the deadline (i.e. Thursday, 12pm AEST). 

Tip: Instead of responding individually to student questions, where possible make a post which summarises common themes within multiple student posts, acknowledging students by name.

What students need to do:

  1. At the start of the week, download the worksheet from the required folder within Learning Resources.
  2. Attempt the questions individually and post any questions or photos, including where you got stuck, in the thread by the deadline (i.e. Wednesday, 11:50pm AEST). 
  3. Optionally, they can respond to other questions posed by their peers by the deadline. 
  4. Self-assess against the solutions and ask for explanations of any solutions they don’t agree with or understand.

Post-Activity

What staff need to do:

  1. Post the worksheet solutions, including annotations to show the step-by-step process (view an example worksheet solutions) and note that you will no longer be monitoring this thread.
  2. Check:
    • if every student was as involved as expected.
    • whether the facilitator feedback and guidance produce the desired effects.
    • if students experienced any difficulties with technologies or course materials that you should address before the next week.
    • if there are any unanswered student questions.

What students need to do

  1. Review tutor feedback and view the worksheet solutions posted by a particular date/time (i.e. 12:00pm AEST on Thursday).
  2. If needed, attempt the questions again once the answer sheet has been posted and student questions have been responded to by the tutor. 

Troubleshooting

What if students are having technical issues?

  1. Provide the student with a link to the Using the discussion board guide for more information.
  2. Refer the student to AskUs for further assistance.

What if a student posts in the wrong thread?

  1. Contact the student and ask them to post their reply in the appropriate location with clear instructions.
  2. Remove the student's post from the thread.

What if there are no student posts in the thread before Thursday?

  • Email the group to encourage students to share any questions they might have before the deadline. For more information, refer to the View group enrolment and tools guide. 

What if a student posts an inappropriate response?

  1. Screenshot the post with the student's name.
  2. Contact the student to inform them of the UQ Student Charter.
  3. Remove the student's post from the thread.
  4. Send the screenshot to the Course Coordinator for further escalation.

What if a student posts the correct solutions in the thread?

  1. Screenshot the post with the student's name.
  2. Contact the student to inform them of the UQ Student Charter.
  3. Remove the student's post including the worksheet solutions from the thread.
  4. Send the screenshot to the Course Coordinator for further escalation.

How do students communicate the difficulties they are having with hand-written calculations and diagrams?

  • Students can take photos of their calculations and include them in their posts.