Thursday, April 4, 2013

Plans for the activity

I plan to use Google Groups as a discussion platform that connects students in my hybrid and regular MAT 120 (statistics) courses. Since this is the first time I will be using web 2.0 tools, I will be careful not to post too many things online. I feel google groups would be an ideal tool to enhance discussion between two classes. First, I would be posting a concept that was taught in class and see how students react to it. Based on students’ response I will be posting more concepts and real-world problems on the discussion board for student discussion and peer to peer learning. My challenges would be to make everyone participate and to make sure I read all the posts.

At the end of the semester, students will be asked to comment/write a reflection on their online experience. I might ask them to do this on the discussion board.


  1. Hi Sree,
    Looks like an interesting approach to connecting students from your classes. I haven't used google groups ever before, so I would be interested to lurk on your group and see how it works.

    To get students to demonstrate their knowledge of the concept, what kind of questions are you going ask? Will you design the questions based on each math topic, or will you have a standard set? Or do students have to do something else to show their understanding?

  2. It will be interesting to see if your students in the hybrid course are more amenable to the experience of responding and commenting using Google groups than your the students in the "traditional" MAT 120 course. I like very much that you are planning to post not only concepts discussed in class, but also "real-world" problems (where the interpretation of the statistical information may vary). I think it's also very smart to have the students write a reflection towards the end of the semester about their online experience -- which helps them synthesize the concepts they learned and helps you get a sense of what worked and what didn't.

  3. Thomas and Wynne both have great comments. I share too your concern about having to read all the posts. As you can see here in Comm 2.0, we ask you guys to read a few of each others' and respond so everyone has a few comments. It de-centers you as a teacher and broadens their sense of who they're responding to. (Maybe!) I'm curious to know more concretely what students will be responding to and will the purpose of their discussion be to demonstrate knowledge/understanding? To ask each other's support? To find multiple ways of solving? Looking forward!

  4. Its going to be really interesting to see student discussions on math concepts. I do believe that students will feel more comfortable or will be more open to posting their thoughts and concerns about understanding a particular concept. It allows students to take turns wearing the instructor hat, while simultaneously gaining an understanding that they might not have gained in the classroom face to face. I also believe that this approach will allow you from your interpretation of their posts, to better gauge student abilities, hence adjusting or accommodating your approach to the lessons. I agree with Thomas. The end of semester reflection gives them an opportunity to freely express what worked for them and what didn't, allowing you also to see what worked and what didn't.