The Discussion Assignment Simulation

Art museum2Imagine you are teaching an asynchronous, online, art history course where the students are new to online learning. Your course design stipulates that the culminating activity is the product of a group project where the students must create a product which communicates the time, literature, political history, and music of the period and the influences and manifestations of these elements in the art of the time.

Palloff and Pratt (Laureate Education, 2011) note that the collaborative, social constructivist approach, is the most successful method for distance learning. For this reason, many courses are designed with group projects as part of the curriculum. Since the course you are assigned to teach requires a project, and as your students are new to online learning, how best can you support them? After reviewing the Palloff and Pratt’s (2007) chapter “Promoting Collaborative Learning”:

  • Choose two measures that you think will be the most helpful to supporting new online students to successful, instructive and meaningful online group work.
  • Describe how these measures will support the new learners as they progress through the course
  • Comment on how the assessment plan will promote individual learning as well as a cohesive group.

Click on the linked rubric below to view the assessment criteria for this discussion. Check back during the week to view your classmate’s comments.

Week 7 Discussion Rubric


Laureate Education (Producer). (2011). Assessing interaction and collaboration in online environments [Video file]. Retrieved from
Palloff, R., & Pratt, K. (2007). Promoting collaborative learning. In Builing Online Communities: Effective Strategies for the Virtual Classroom (pp. 157–184). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Retrieved from