CN engages learners through social and engaging learning. This article will guide instructors to set up a CN course for social discussion.
STEP1: Select A Course Category
When you first enter your CN course, you will be prompted to select a course category. CN will automatically connect your course with other courses that belong to the same category. You can add multiple categories.
The purpose of setting up a Course Category is to connect with similar courses. This will give your students an opportunity to network and communicate with Global Classmates. Read more about Global Class.
Note: You can always modify the course category from Settings >> Global Class Settings.
If you want to connect your course to specific courses, you and the collaborating instructors should select “Other” and define a unique course category.
STEP2: Select A Pre-defined Post Visibility Setting (optional)
By default, there is no pre-defined post visibility setting. Students must select a visibility setting for each of their posts.
You may go to Settings>>Post Settings, and select a default post visibility setting (such as This Course) for your class.
This way, your students won't need to select a post visibility setting each time. But they will still be able to change to another setting whne needed.
STEP3: Define Discussion Topics
Hashtags help students easily find posts on a specific topic. As a course instructor, please encourage your students to use hashtags to label their posts. To do so, you want to define a few course discussion topics, and you may add more as the course progresses.
Hint: When defining discussion topics, you don’t need to include the hashtag (#) in front of the terms. Just simply type each term in and press Enter to save it into a little block. After you submit the entire form, the topics will automatically turn into hashtags.
From the Instructor Suggested Discussion Topics section, you can edit these topics anytime and download hashtag-based analytics.
STEP4: Set up a Course Seeds Goal
The Anar Seeds point system motivates students and tracks their participation. You and your students can click the Course Anar icon on the top bar to view the course Anar Seeds table. We recommend that you take a screenshot of this table and include it in your syllabus to help students understand how to accumulate seeds.
As the course instructor, you may modify the Anar Seeds table, set up a course Anar Seeds goal, and use Anar Seeds for grading.
Hint: You don't have to edit the default Anar Seeds table. You may slightly modify the seed allocations and the minimum word count for creating a post and a reflection.
200-300 seeds is a good Anar Seeds goal in general. If you want to create an assignment in your LMS (Canvas, Moodle, Blackboard, etc.) and let CN send seed points back to your LMS’ Grade book, please check the following guides to set up:
Guide for Canvas: https://support.thecn.com/hc/en-us/articles/235467027
Guide for Moodle: https://support.thecn.com/hc/en-us/articles/235466887
Guide for Blackboard:https://support.thecn.com/hc/en-us/articles/115003568227
STEP5: Create A Few Starter Posts
For example, create a welcome post to introduce CN, share a CN tutorial, and encourage students to populate their CN profile/ePortfolio.
You may also create a poll to survey students’ learning backgrounds and help them get to know their peers.
Create a few course-specific posts to model what you hope your students post in CN.
Hint: Discussion in CN is more student-centered and informal in nature. You don’t have to (we also do not recommend that you) apply a sophisticated assessment structure and monitor every single post.
STEP6: Use the Task tool to give discussion prompts (optional).
If you use the full CN (see how to switch between CN Post and full CN), the CN Task tool can be used to deliver discussion prompts, which guide students to think deeper and articulate specific topics. Note, discussion prompts can be given through other means, such as a Page or Assignment in your LMS (Canvas, Moodle, Blackboard, etc.).
This Task example is from professor Joseph Choe Kin Hwa's Strategic Marketing course offered at Berjaya University.
STEP7: Give Students Badges and Recommendations/Compliments (optional)
Once students begin posting, you may browse their content as your time permits (you can use the CN mobile web app), rate their posts, make comments and, more importantly, award them badges and give them recommendations/compliments. You can award a student a badge in a few seconds. Writing a recommendation/compliment takes only two clicks.
Award badges and give recommendations/compliments from a post:
Award badges and give recommendations/compliments from Course Roster:
You can also go to the Badges page from the left course menu to use advanced badge-awarding methods.
1. CN Post Faculty Experience Sharing Documents -- Learn how other instructors use CN for social discussions
3. CN Netiquette lesson -- Share a guideline with students to create a positive social learning environment