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Creating Top Hat Discussion Question

How to use Discussion Questions to facilitate different pedagogical outcomes

Discussion questions allow you to ask students subjective and interpretive questions that may not have a simple or absolute answer — gaining real-time feedback during lectures by allowing students to seek clarification and facilitating dialogue between students. This question type is designed for free text responses. There are specific options and settings that can affect the outcome of the interaction in the classroom. This document will present the options and clarify the outcomes that they may facilitate.

Example

Discussion Example

Response Options

Discussion Options
Responses can be seen by Participants are anonymous to Discussion Style
Everyone No one Open Discussion — Students will be able to see each others' responses and see who said what.
Everyone Participants only Open Discussion (students cannot see names) — Students will be able to see other students' responses, but will not be able to see who said what. You can still see which student submitted what.
Everyone Everyone Anonymous Discussion — You will not be able to see what individuals answered, and this discussion cannot be graded. Students can see other students' submissions, but not who said what. The anonymous setting cannot be changed after the discussion is created.
Professor only Participants only Answer Submission — Students will not be able to see other students' responses.
Professor only Everyone Anonymous Submission — You will not be able to see what individuals answered, and this discussion cannot be graded. Students cannot see other student' submissions. The anonymous setting cannot be changed after the discussion is created.

Character Limit

A discussion response from a student can be a maximum of 5000 characters. This equates to about 250 words or one typed page.

Assign Grades

Grading options allow you to assign points for both getting a correct answer and/or for participating in the question. Note: grading is not possible when a question is designated as anonymous. Should you choose to award participation grades for a discussion these will be allocated automatically to any student who responds to the discussion, regardless of the quality of their response. Alternatively, on account of the subjective nature of Top Hat discussions, should you choose to award correctness grades for a discussion you will want to manually award these grades after the fact. 

Correctness: There may be times when you want to assign points for correctness alone. If you are presenting a large number of questions, you might need to assign participation points to all questions.

Participation: There may also be times when you want to assign participation points alone. If you want to measure the level of understanding among all students and don't care whether they get the correct answer but want to know that each person responded, participation points can do just that.

Both: There may be times when you want to provide points for both correctness and participation. If you want to encourage students to try and/or ensure that each student is participating, you can split points between both. The default value is .5 points for getting the answer correct and .5 points for participating in answering the question.



Keywordstop hat, discuss, options, design, outcomes, pedagogy, active learning, brainstorming,Doc ID132916
OwnerTimmo D.GroupInstructional Resources
Created2023-11-20 13:34:19Updated2023-11-21 09:16:07
SitesCenter for Teaching, Learning & Mentoring
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