You can choose to evaluate user’s individual messages and have Learning Environment automatically calculate a topic score for each user, or you can assign a topic scores directly to each user. If you choose to assess individual messages, you can specify how you want the system to calculate each user’s overall topic score.
Once a topic is configured for assessment, you can assess users from two places: inside the topic while reading messages, or on the Assess Topic page. Assessing users from within the topic lets you read users’ messages in context and evaluate as you perform other reading-related tasks (approving messages, marking messages read, replying, etc.). Assessing users from the Assess Topic page enables you to see topics scores for all users and view all of a user’s messages together on one screen.
Note If a topic uses message approval, you must approve a message before you can assess it.
|To assess||In||Do this|
|Individual messages||The Grid Style message list||Open the message you want to assess, then click Assess at the top of the message.|
|Individual messages||The Reading Style message list||Click the Assess link below the header of the message you want to assess.|
|The topic as a whole||The Grid Style message list||Open any message by a user you want to assess, then click Assess at the top of the message.|
|The topic as a whole||The Reading Style message list||Click the Assess link below the header of any message by a user you want to assess.|
Tip If the Score column is empty on the Assess Topic page, click Display Options on the action bar, select Score Value or Percentage, and click Save.
Tip On either tab, you can search for specific users by typing all or part of a user’s name or user ID in the Search For field and clicking Search. You can also filter the view to display members of a specific group or section using the View By drop-down list.
Note If the user’s messages are displayed across multiple pages, be sure to save the page before navigating to another page of messages. Any new message scores entered are lost if you change pages without saving.
You can also enter comments in the Feedback field.
You can link a topic’s score to a grade item in your course’s grade book so that users’ scores are automatically transferred to the grade book. This enables you to factor the topic score into users’ final grades for the course. It also enables you to display the result to users; users cannot view their topic score directly through the Discussions tool, but they can view their grades in the grade book.
On the Assessment tab where you configure a topic for assessment, select the grade item from the Grade Item drop-down list, or click the New Grade Item link to create a new grade item for the topic. See Setting up assessment for more information about configuring a topic for assessment; and see creating grade items.
Note Only numeric grade items can be linked to discussion topics.
You assess topics linked to grade items in the same way you assess stand-alone topics, by assigning a score to each message or to each user for the topic overall. However, Learning Environment will not update the grade item until you release the score to the grade book. This prevents inaccurate grades from being displayed before you are finished assessing users.
When you release the topic score, Learning Environment updates the grade item in the grade book. Any additional changes you make to a user’s score are automatically sent to the grade book.
Tip You can also release a user’s score in the same place that you enter it by selecting the Graded check box.
You can associate a discussion topic with a competency activity to tie the topic’s assessment to a set of learning objectives and a competency you want your users to master. Discussion activities are evaluated using a rubric.
Message ratings can be effective in shared discussions where a lot of messages might be posted over a long period of time. Message ratings enable the community to collectively assess the value of each message, which helps significant messages gain prominence as they collect the highest ratings over time. This helps everyone find messages that are regularly referenced as classic contributions, and helps new users focus on the most important messages posted in the past. Your rating is anonymous.
A message's average displays above the message and you can search for messages based on their average rating, which makes it easy to locate the best or most insightful in a topic.
Users also need the permissions Rate Messages and See Average Message Ratings.
Some of your courses may use message ratings. Each message’s Average Rating is displayed as a row of five blue stars. The filled-in stars indicate the average rating.
Tip You can search by average rating to find the highest rated messages. In a big discussion, this is a good way to find the best messages.
Click one of the orange stars.