How to write a good discussion post. What should I include in a follow-up post? How to write discussion posts in 6 easy steps:
What is a Discussion post: In online classes, discussion posts are the main way students get to interact with professors with the course’s ideas and lessons. The intended purpose is to demonstrate an understanding of the course guidelines presenting a cohesive argument with effective evidence to back it.
Write an Online Discussion
Initial post: an initial post is your first response to a question posed by the professor.
Answer the question: Always start with this if possible. Give a clear answer to the question.
Give evidence: Explain your point of view, and use evidence from your text, notes, or outside research to support your point.
Explain the connection: Describe how your evidence proves your point. Don’t assume it’s obvious.
The post might introduce a question or idea that others can follow up on. Make sure you have answered the initial question first!
Example of a discussion post
Question from the instructor: Does brain size matter? Explain why or why not, using evidence from this week’s readings.
Student 1:  If you’re wondering, “Does brain size matter?” Yes, I would agree. There is evidence from numerous studies that shows a connection between IQ and brain size.
 Witelson (1999) measured the parietal lobe, which is involved in logic and mathematical reasoning, and discovered that it was 15% larger in Einstein’s brain than in other adult males’.
 This is supported by the fact that Einstein’s intellectual abilities (logic/reasoning), which we know to have been much stronger than those of the average person, were linked to the region of the brain that was larger than usual.
In addition, Salat (2019) examined the volume of various brain regions using MRI scans.He discovered that adult memory functions were significantly influenced by the size of the cortical and hippocampal tissue. Both findings demonstrate that the quality of a function depends on the size of a particular brain region as well as how that region is distributed across the brain.
What should I include in a follow-up post?
The most important thing to keep in mind when writing follow-up posts is that you need to contribute something new to the conversation rather than just stating your agreement or disagreement with another person’s article.
Give your reasons for agreeing or disagreeing, along with your own arguments and proof.
Adding to what has already been mentioned Consider “Yes, BUT…” or “Yes, AND…”
Ensure that your post has the three components I outlined earlier:
Example of a follow-up post
J. R. Skoyles 1999. Not IQ, but expertise capacity has increased as a result of human evolution. Psycoloquy. 10. From http://cogprints.org/6348/1/Skoyles_ Human evolution expanded brains expertise not IQ.pdf, retrieved on August 5, 2009. (002).
 Claim/Answer to the query
 explanation of how a proposition is supported by evidence
 in response to an earlier post
Student 2:   I concur with Student 1 that brain size matters.   The study of Einstein’s brain, however, didn’t completely satisfy me; it appeared to have been conducted more for personal reasons (as it involved Einstein) than to support a hypothesis.
 The researchers’ strategy in the MRI study Student1 referenced was far more compelling because they compared multiple subjects and examined a particular brain function. This idea is backed up by compelling evolutionary evidence.
The human brain has grown to be larger than that of homo erectus, according to Skoyles (1999). He thinks that because humans are bigger, they can gain competence over time. He uses the term “expertise” to refer to the abilities and knowledge needed to carry out crucial tasks like gathering and hunting.  Therefore, having a larger brain is related to both better intelligence and human survival in addition to intelligence.
Online discussion dos and don’ts
Do: Check in frequently to the discussion—not just when it’s time to post. You will be able to stay informed and up to date on the course material in this manner.
To support your postings, use details from the course notes and relevant texts.
Unless the terminology is special or unique, use your own words instead of quoting.
Reference your sources.
When you are composing your posts, try to make references to what others have stated.
Noting the opposing side of your argument demonstrates an open mindset.
Utilize topic lines wisely. Could a reader infer the subject line’s content with any degree of certainty?
Before posting, try reading your posts out loud to spot typos and errors.
Don’ts: submit comments like “Great point” or “I agree” without elaborating on the preceding author’s point and giving additional thoughts or information.
Don’t upload everything at once. If you write a lot of posts quickly, it will be clear that you haven’t been reading.
Don’t let other people’s comments affect your emotions. React to the concepts and contention, not the individual.
It is similar to using APA in a paper as to using APA in discussion threads. Your discussion posts can be thought of as a brief APA paper without a cover page. Both in-text and in a references section of your discussion post, you must cite your sources. Check out our in-text citation page on the APA guide at http://guides.rasmussen.edu/apa/intext if you need assistance formatting in-text citations. Your discussion post’s references section will appear at the conclusion.
Recognize the discussion posting’s objectives.
What is a discussion forum?
The discussion forum is where you will write to explore your own development and understanding of a topic or project. Then, engage with your fellow students to share knowledge. This guide can help you to both write a discussion forum post and respond to others’. Write great discussion board posts by following these steps:
Carefully read and undesratnd the discussion instructions.
Link to how this post is related to your learning about in your course.
Have course materials to complete the forum.
Identify all the key terms in assignment directions.
Highlight all the action words in the assignment.
Note the word count or citation format required.
Review the grading rubric.
Complete any supplemental reading for the week.
Complete a paragraph for each part of your discussion board post instructions. For example, if the discussion board prompt includes two bulleted items or two questions, you should write two fully developed paragraphs in your post.
Does your post contain a fully-developed paragraph for each of the questions or action words in the discussion instructions?
Did you include concepts, ideas, or information from the course readings into your post wherever possible?
Did you correctly cite your sources in APA, MLA, or Chicago style as you used them?
Does your post meet word count requirements?
Did you review your writing for correct grammar, punctuation, and spelling?
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