Discussions allow the user to create a learning Activity in which students can respond to a prompt and interact with other students as part of focused conversation threads. All course members can add to and access the thread unless it is organized by groups, in which case each student can access only their group's threads.
With the Activity Editor:
- Use the Filter by group icon to make and/or review activity settings that apply only to specific groups (if groups have been created in the course).
- Preview the activity.
- Save changes.
- Depending on the type of activity you're editing, the Activity Editor can include up to four tabbed screens. The Discussion Activity editor contains three tabbed screens.:
- Use the Activity screen to add/edit basic content that, information, and metadata about an activity that is visible/accessible to the students (e.g., activity titles, thumbnail images, introductory content, instructions, attachments students need to complete the activity).
- Use the Settings screen to configure the way you want the activity to work for the students (e.g., gradebook settings, objective mastery and badge details, visibility, access).
- The History screen only appears when changes have been made to an activity since its creation. Use it to review changes and restore previous versions of the activity's content.
Some cards in the Activity Editors are collapsed by default; to expand them, click the arrows.
Use the Activity tab to:
- Provide the Title.
- Provide a Thumbnail image to represent the activity by clicking the plus sign next to the thumbnail.
- Recommended file type: PNG or JPG (Pearson Connexus converts all files into PNGs.)
- Ideal size: 400px x 400px (Pearson Connexus automatically resizes images, so uploading images smaller than 400px x 400px may reduce quality.)
- Create descriptive Content about the activity using the rich text editor. This content always appears at the top of the activity.
- Select Add Activity Instructions to open a rich text editor to create instructions. Students can access this content by clicking a pencil icon at the top of the activity.
- Select Add attachment to provide files for students to review before starting the activity.
If you choose to set a Due date (not available for continuous courses), you can specify:
- The Due date and time.
- Whether you want to Allow late submissions, and, if so, what the Late rule and Grace period rules are.
- Whether you want to:
- Allow users to edit own posts.
- Allow instructors to delete posts.
- Make this a Non-threaded discussion.
- Allow students to create new threads (not available for Non-threaded discussions).
- The desired Student grouping for the activity from the dropdown. Select Manage groupings to edit, delete, and/or create new groupings. Learn more: How do I create and manage groups?
Gradebook and submission
If you choose to make the activity Gradable, you can specify:
- The activity's numeric Weight in category; this number defines how much impact this activity's grade has on the final grade, relative to the other gradable activities in the same category. (Weight in category is not available in courses using Multi-Outcome Scoring.)
- The desired Score entry type (Points, Rubric, Percent (%), or Letter grade):
- The Grading category you want the activity to be a part of. Grading Categories allow you to apply different grade settings to groups of activities within the same course.
- The grading Period you want the activity to be a part of. Separate grading Periods allow you to divide grades by date range without building additional courses in Pearson Connexus.
- Whether you want the activity to be considered Extra credit.
In Multi-Outcome Scoring courses, Gradebook and submission allows you to align activities with Scoring objectives and requires you to use Points as the Score entry. Assign the desired number of Pts possible for each objective that you want aligned.
Select Choose Objective to align the activity with one or more objectives. Objective mastery will only appear in core courses or courses that objectives have been added.
Visibility and access
With Visibility and access settings, you can choose to:
- Make the activity visible to:
- Students, teachers and observers: This is the default setting for activities intended for students to complete.
- Teachers and observers: This setting works well for Lesson Guide materials that observers like parents, mentors, etc. need access to. A map icon appears next to these activities in the Activities pages for teachers and observers.
- Teachers only: This setting works well for Lesson Guide materials that only teachers need. A map icon appears next to these activities in the teacher Activities page.
- Check the Hide from student's table of contents and to-do list box. Note that it is still accessible with course links and bookmarks unless otherwise restricted.
- Check the Block access until student completes other activity box.
- If it appears, you can check the Require passing score if gradable for mastery(optional).
- Select Choose Activity, and select the activity or activities that you want to make access dependent on.
- Check the Block access until student masters objective(s) box, select Choose Objective, and select the objective(s) you want to make access dependent on. This option only appears for core courses with objective mastery.
- Check the Block access until a specified date box and enter the desired date and time. This option does not appear for continuous courses.
- Check the Student must enter a password box and enter the desired Activity password in the field. This is different from assessment-specific passwords, which must be entered each time a student attempts the assessment and are managed in the assessment Advanced options card.
- By default, students must enter this password only once and can access the activity without entering the password thereafter.
- Also, you can check the Require password each visit to override the default if needed.
Select Choose Badge to select one or more badges that you want automatically awarded to students who successfully complete this activity.
Admins can create custom Metadata fields for activities in their domain. This content is only visible to teachers, course authors, etc. and provides further insight into an activity, such as:
- An activity Description for course authors.
- An idea of how this activity fits into the goal of the course or the Big Picture.
- Essential Questions that should be answered by the activity or that students should keep in mind as they complete it.
- Any relevant Vocabulary.
- Associated Resources.
Some of the fields under Metadata ask for content that, if set up by your system admin, can be used to make an activity searchable in the Digital Library. Contact your system admin to find out if there are fields in your domain that can be used this way.
Advanced gradebook options
Manage Advanced gradebook options (only appears for gradable activities), like:
- Define advanced gradebook options.
- Defining the minimum Passing score (%).
- The assessment's Score can be dropped from calculated course score (unavailable if the activity is marked as Extra Credit in Gradebook and submission).
- To Include this activity's score in the final grade calculation.
- To Require a passing score for course credit.
- To Treat as zero in gradebook until this activity is scored (unavailable if the activity is marked as Extra Credit in Gradebook and submission).
Advanced activity options
Manage Advanced activity options, like:
- Completion requirements. You can set the activity to Mark as completed when the student:
- Views this activity for a specified time
- Submits this activity
- Receives any score
- Receives a passing score
- If the Student must complete this activity before continuing to the next one.
- Changing the activity's folder Location using the dropdown.
- Giving the activity a new Activity ID in the field.
The History tab records changes made to the activity and allows you to retrieve previous versions:
- Select the version you want to restore.
- Preview the content.
- Select Restore.
Pearson Connexus does not itemize changes to all settings, but does track them. Users can access them by selecting the Details link that appears at the bottom of the history table.Additional Articles: