Blogs

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Blogs are a useful tool to encourage student interaction and contribution to the course. It is different from the Discussion tool as discussions are interactions of equals, but a blog is "owned" by an individual. While others may comment, the main voice in a blog is the individual user's. This is a good option for sharing student contributions with the entire course. It is also possible to keep the blog conversation private between the instructor(s) and the student.

There is no direct grading mechanism in the Blog tool, but a column can be entered in the gradebook where grades can be added for Blog postings.

NOTE: Slowness has been seen in larger classes where students are making blog posts often. It is difficult to put a specific number on it, but probably 100 students who are each posting weekly could see the Blog page take a couple of minutes to load towards the end of the semester. Once the page is loaded, the individual blogs open quickly.

Contents

My Blog Settings (Profile)

Each person can create a Profile that shows on all his/her blog posts. This Profile is not the same one as the Profile that can be created at "My Workspace." The Blog profile allows for a photo and any information you want to provide. This profile is unique to the specific course in which it is created. If you have a Blog in a different course, you will need to create the profile in that course also.

  1. Click Blogs in the left menu bar.
  2. Click My blog settings at the top of the page.
  3. "URL for my picture" - Information for adding your photo can be found in the Edit Your Profile tutorial.
  4. Use the Content Editor to enter any information you want to provide about yourself.
  5. Click Change settings

Add Blog Entry

  1. Click Blogs in the left menu bar.
  2. Click Add blog entry at the top of the page.
  3. "Title:" - Enter a title for your blog posting.
  4. Using the Content Editor, compose your post.
  5. Choose who can see this entry
    • "Only site administrators and I can see this entry" - this posting will only be viewable by instructor-type roles and the author.
    • "All members of this site can see this entry" - viewable by everyone enrolled in this course.
    • "This entry is publicly viewable - this post is viewable to anyone who has the link to it, whether or not they are enrolled in this course. The URL can be sent to people outside the system and they can view the posting. The posting can also be found with an internet search engine.
  6. Click Publish entry

Manage Blog Entries

As Instructor, you have the ability to edit, remove, view comments and leave a comment on all blog postings.

  1. Click Blogs in the left menu bar.
  2. You see all blog entries listed by the person's name. Click the hyperlinked name of the person to view his/her postings.
  3. At the bottom of the posting, you see several links:
    • "Edit entry" - You can edit the content of the posting and change who can see the entry. Click Publish entry.
    • "Remove entry" - In response to the "This will permanently remove the entry" message, click OK.
    • "# comments" - View comments posted by others to this post.
    • "Leave a comment" - Make a comment that can be viewed by all with permission to view this post.
    • "Permalink" - this option only functions for the owner of this particular blog. If you click "permalink" on your own blog, it will open a screen with only your blog post(s). This is useful if you want to send someone a link to your blog posting, but not everyone else's. Of course, your blog must be set to "publicly viewable" for this to be useful.

Subscribe to a Blog

On the main list of "All the blogs," each person's blog has the Rss-feed.pngicon at the far right side of the screen. This icon allows you to subscribe to a blog using a Feed Reader such as Google, Outlook, etc. When you click the icon, you will be given the choice to subscribe using the Feed Reader of your choice. Click Subscribe Now.

Blog Permissions

Permissions for all tools have been set to most common usage. It is highly recommended that you do not alter these Permissions without a consultation with LSS staff. Altering Permissions may have unintended consequences.

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