Groups in Discussion Forums

In a face to face class, you might divide
your students into small groups for discussions. You can do something similar with discussion
forums in Moodle by using the Groups setting. So I’ve got a forum here, but instead of
having a large, whole-class discussion, I want to divide my class into groups and have
each group discuss the topic only within their group. For this example, we’ll assume that each
group has the same topic, but you can give each group a different topic, and we’ll
see how to do that at the end of this video. First, before doing anything in the discussion
forum, we need to set up groups at the course level. In the Administration block, click Users,
then Groups. You have the option to create groups manually
or have Moodle auto-create the groups. For this example, we’ll do it manually,
which allows you to specify which students are in which group. First I’ll click create group. We’ll call it Group A. You don’t have
to enter anything else, just save changes. So there’s Group A; now I want to Add users
by clicking Add/Remove Users. That generates a list of students in the course,
and I can select which students I want to be in this group. Press the Control key as you click to select
multiple students. Then click Add. These three students are now in Group A.
Repeat the process for as many groups as you want. Be sure that each student is in a group; if
someone is left out, they won’t be able to enter the discussion. Now we’ll go to the discussion forum. In this case I’ve already set up the forum,
but you can do it either before or after you create and populate your groups; it doesn’t
matter. For this example, our forum type is Standard
Forum for General Use. You can use groups for a Q&A Forum, but that
setup is a little different and is covered in another video. The only setting we need to change for this
forum to use groups is under Common Module Settings: Group Mode, which is under Common
Module Settings. Separate Groups means that students can only
view the posts of people in their group. They are completely in the dark as to what’s
going on in the other groups. Visible Groups means that students can see
the discussions in other groups but can only reply to their group. Now let’s go back to our discussion prompt. If you want each group to discuss the same
prompt, just put it in the description as usual. However, If you want each group to have a
different prompt, you’re NOT going to put it in the description. Instead,
Save this If you want to give each group a different
prompt, click into the forum and Add a New Discussion. Enter a title and text for your prompt,
Then, if this is for Group A, select Group A in the bottom right. Submit , then add another new discussion for
Group B, Enter your subject and your prompt, and choose
Group B. And then Repeat that for all other groups. So just to review. If you want everybody to have the same discussion
prompt, then you can put the prompt in the description field
If you want each group to have different prompts, then you enter the discussion, add a new discussion,
enter the prompt, and choose which group it goes to.

Danny Hutson

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