web access button
Request Space

WebCT Student Orientation
Check Browser
Help Guide
WebCT Login


Private (group) Discussions (either scroll down through page or select from one of the following choices)
About Private (group) Discussions
To Create a Private Topic
Assigning Group Members

Compose Message
Discussion Rubric (sample)

Threaded & Unthreaded Views
Download the Text Based Version

Laulima Based Tutorials
WebCT Based Tutorials

> Exporting Existing WebCT Quizzes/Surveys & Importing into Laulima Tests & Quizzes Tool

Stay tuned for additional tutorials!

> Adding a Syllabus
> Adding a new course section (organizer page)
> Adding a single page (single page link to .pdf, .html, .doc, etc.)
> Adding a URL (link to an outside resource site)
> Adding the Student Presentation Tool
> Adding the Assignment Tool
> Adding a TA
(teaching assistant)
> Adding a co-designer
> Adding Guest Accounts
> Adding a PowerPoint presentation (for Windows)
> Adding a PowerPoint presentation (for Macintosh)
> Adding a PowerPoint for Downloading

> Narrating PowerPoint & Processing in Impatica
> Adding a Quiz or Survey

> Importing and Uploading a Quiz via Respondus (for Windows)
> Importing and Uploading Games/Self-Test via StudyMate (for Windows)
> Importing and Uploading a Multiple Choice Quiz via MakeQuiz (for Macintosh)
> Manual Grading of a Quiz
> Assessment Strategies
> Viewing Quiz/Survey Statistics
> Adding a Score (grade) column
> Adding a Final Score (grade) column
> Downloading and Importing e-packs
> Creating and Restoring a Course Backup
> Fast Uploading of multiple Files with WebDAV
> Exporting/Importing the Student Database
> Exporting Final Grades to Banner
> Word 2000 & 2003
> Private (group) Discussions

About Private (group) Discussions:
The Discussion Tool (part of the basic course template) is used for class communication and interaction. Instructors have the ability to create their own Topic areas, post a message and have students reply. By default Discussion topics are "public" meaning they are viewable and accessible to everyone in the course.

Private Discussions on the other hand are topic areas that are viewable and accessible to only a select group of student(s). This tutorial illustrates how to create and set up a Private Topic area.

To Create a Private Discussion:
Log into the course and select the link for “Discussions” (often located under the Course Menu or inside "Communication Tools").

Graphic Image

The Main and Notes Topic areas are a default and cannot be deleted. To add a new Discussion area, select the "Create topic " button.

Graphic Image

Enter a title and click "Create".

Graphic Image

Once a topic area is added it is considered "Public", everyone in the course can view, access and post a message to it. To make this topic area private select the checkbox under "Private" and click "Update".

Graphic Image

Assigning Private Members:
To assign members to the topic area select the checkbox next to the topic title, on the right select the button for "Manage members".

Graphic Image

Select the button for "Select members".

Graphic Image

Check off student names, INCLUDING yourself and click "Update".

NOTE: if the instructor is not selected as one of the private members he/she will not be able to access or post to that topic.

Graphic Image

Private members should now able to enter the topic area (it is a blue text link). If the topic area is black, not a link, then you will need to "Manage members" again and include yourself as part of the group.

Graphic Image

Compose Message:
To compose a message enter the topic area by clicking on topic title.

Graphic Image

Select the "Compose message " button.

Graphic Image

Enter a Subject (for example: Group A Project Directions) and the message (for example: expectations of group participation/interaction, grading criteria, directions and/or a question). Click "Post" when done.

NOTE: many instructors adopt a grading scheme for postings/interactions whether they are private or public - the following link is a sample Rubric one could use/modify to assign discussion scores (created by Fort Hayes State University): Discussion Rubric

Graphic Image

Select the "Update listing" button to refresh the screen and view the newly posted message.

Graphic Image

Threaded/Unthreaded Views:
There are 2 ways to view a message (this is the same for messages posted to the Mail Tool), Unthreaded and Threaded. One can jump between these views by selecting the "Threaded" or "Unthreaded" buttons located on top of the message table.

Unthreaded view will list all messages in chronological order as seen in the following screen shot. To read the message one would click on the message title.

Graphic Image

Threaded view will list messages based on subject header as in the following screen shot. To view the message one would OPEN the header or folder first by selecting the green arrow next to the subject title, then click on the message contained inside.

Graphic Image

Once a message is opened select to reply by either clicking "Reply" (message is returned to the Discussion topic) or Reply Privately (message goes to the persons WebCT Mail inbox and is not viewable within the topic area).

Return to Main Tutorial Menu

Site managed by Linda Mcconnell
University of Hawaii, Distributed Learning & User Servers
Last Update:10/9/04