Having discussions in class is one of the most common and embedded methods in university teaching. Discussions can allow for deep and active learning and stimulate critical thinking through interaction, peer to peer learning and the exchange of ideas.
But what constitutes an effective discussion? How can we set up for different types of discussions?
This course will provide an overview of how we can effectively plan and facilitate in-class and online discussions to enhance student learning. It will explore pedagogical approaches underpinning discussions, facilitation techniques and a range of activities that can be employed to achieve vibrant discussions.
We invite you to share your experiences and best practice tips on this topic to get this discussion rolling!
This course will run from Monday, 25 March to Thursday, 28 March 2019 through this blog. There will be 4 blog posts, one per day, that will take about 15-20 minutes to work through.
- Day 1 – Intro to the discussion approach – the what and why
- Day 2 – How to facilitate effective face to face discussions
- Day 3 – Facilitating discussions in online environments
- Day 4 – Broader facilitation challenges and solutions
Karlene Dickens is a Learning Technologist with the ANU Online Team. Karlene loves the fluid and dynamic nature of facilitating group discussions and is continuously inspired by the transformation and growth that occurs for both the group as a whole and the individuals within it. Karlene has facilitated numerous groups in diverse settings both face-to-face and online, including corporate, community and university environments.
Rebecca Ng is a Learning Technologist with the ANU Online team. She describes herself as a “partial cyborg” as she believes that technology has changed the way she thinks and approaches her daily life. More importantly, it has changed the way we perceive and learn. Hence, she is interested in researching new pedagogical approaches that can effectively integrate different technologies to support higher education.
Technology-Enhanced Learning in Higher Education Certificate
Go here to learn more on getting recognised for your participation in coffee courses.
All are welcome
We welcome all staff, including tutors, demonstrators, professional staff, and academics at the Australian National University and beyond to join us for this course. ANU staff can enrol on HORUS for recognition for completing this course (look for a course called “Facilitating Effective Discussions ” in the Training Catalogue.)
Please feel free to contact EdDesign@anu.edu.au with any questions.
A quick reminder about the blog
We’ve added a new feature to the blog, where you can subscribed to get notifications by email of responses to your comments. This is an option you can choose when making a comment, and will hopefully help to support more effective discussions. We’d love to know your thoughts about it!