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By Allan
Jeong
Copyrights
20012006
jeong@
coe.fsu.edu

The
Forum Manager (version 3.26)
.
ForumManager is a Microsoft Excel program that downloads threaded discussions
from Blackboard 6.x or higher when using Internet Explorer 6.x or higher
. Once downloaded into Excel, users can navigate and read the threaded
messages offline (see below), and use the "Count postings"
and "Performance Analysis" tools to analyze each discussion and students'
performance in the discussion. For example, ForumManager counts postings
per student, number of threads, average length of discussion threads (view),
percent of messages posted as replies, number of replies elicited by messages
posted by the student, number of times the student reciprocates a reply,
number of different days the student posted to the discussion, percentage
of messages posted with userspecified
keywords and phrases such as 'however', 'but', '?', 'if' (view).
To conduct more advanced analysis and to sequentially analyze, visualize,
and identify patterns in the way students exchange tagged
messages and responses, download the
Discussion
Analysis Tool .
Program Features:

Download a Blackboard discussion forum and its message index into MS Excel.

Download a message text for each message listed in the message index.

Navigate through the downloaded message index to read the message texts
in Excel and offline!

Compute number of messages posted per student. Use this to compute student
participation scores and to create small weekly discussion groups that
are balanced by level of student participation.

Compute standard deviation in the average number of postings per student

Compute the number of messages that received at least one reply

Measure the level of student interaction by computing the percentage of
messages in forum that received at least one reply.

Measures the length of a discussion by counting number of message threads.

Measures the width of a discussion by computing the average thread level.

For each individual student, compute number of messages posted, number
of messages posted in reply to other students, number of replies elicited
by the students' messages, number of times the student reciprocated replies,
and number of different days during the discussion period when the
student posted a message(s) to the discussion.
Other Features Coming Soon!

Sort students by total number of postings to determine your most active
and inactive students. Use this data to assign and balance groups by participation
level.

Generate student participation reports that can be individually and automatically
emailed to students.

Harvest messages that have been labeled
or tagged by the students or the instructor (e.g. ARG, CHALLENGE, EVID,
EXPLAIN, etc) to review how students are contributing to the discussions.

Display frequencies of postings across designated labels (e.g. number of
arguments, evidence).

Count number of observed twoevent sequences/interactions based on labels
(e.g. ARGEVID)

Mask all students' names with pseudo names to protect confidentiality when
using the discussions to conduct research

Ability to download discussions from WebCT
Last Updated: March 4, 2006
