It's likely that you will want to add content as the teaching semester unfolds. There are some issues you should be aware of here. Furthermore, there are some 'tips and tricks' in releasing content to students that can increase student interest and application.
For elaboration on these points, see Managing content during the semester (PDF 65KB).
There is much more to online discussion than setting up some topics and waiting for students to post messages! The effective use of online discussion requires consistent and skilled facilitation. It may also require considerable time for the teaching staff - often more than is expected.
For information and advice on moderating online discussion, see the following resources:
The Virtual Professor: Using Discussion Forums (Kate Britt)
Effective Online Facilitation - from the Australian Flexible Learning Quick Guide Series
Also see Managing discussion categories, topics and threads (PDF 91KB) Quick Guide.
Chat sessions with 4-10 participants are quite manageable, however large groups can be very difficult to manage and are not recommended.
Managing the Chat and Whiteboard tool for teaching (PDF 99KB) Step-by-step guide.
If you have chosen to provide the email tool for students then it is likely that some will use it - instead of ordinary email. This means that you will need to check two email systems during the semester, which not all users will want to do. To overcome this you can set up MyLO email to send incoming emails to your ordinary UTAS email account.
Authorised by the Associate Director, Service Delivery & Support
31 May, 2011