- Sincerity. The initial post needs to be open ended, with a tone that genuinely seeks discussion.
- Mediate. Just like in a Face-to-Face classroom, students respond to guidance when discussing a topic.
- Balance Frequency. The more an instructor participates, the more students will. Be aware, however, not to dominate discussion.
- Links. Links help to create common ground and can act as evidence. More than 50% of social networking comments contain a link of some sort.
- Closure. Think about how you will end discussions with some sort of closure. Studies show that students learn more when they know the discussion has ended.
BONUS: Provide visuals and videos during discussion. Encourage students to create videos of themselves responding, as opposed to replying solely through text. Try it yourself too!