Graduate Programs Discussion Boards

Graduate Programs Discussion Boards

Discussion Boards (DB) are a key component of online learning. They foster active participation of learners and dialog with fellow learners and instructors. Graduate-level courses require learners to create original posts to course DBs and to engage in dialogue by responding to posts created by others throughout the course. Original posts and responses should be substantive, and if references are made to the works of others, APA guidelines for in-text citations and references apply.

Minimum Weekly DB Expectations

  • Post an original and thoughtful Main Post to the DB prompt.
  • Respond to at least 2 other posts from learners and/or the instructor (Response Posts).
  • The first contribution (Main Post or Response Post) must be posted before midnight (Central time) on Friday of each week.
  • Two additional responses are required after Friday of each week.
  • For DB assignment prompts with a Part One and Part Two, Part One should be addressed in the first week of the unit with a Main Post and minimum of 2 Response Posts, and Part Two should be addressed in the second week of the unit with a Main Post and a minimum of 2 Response Posts.

More on DBs

At the end of each unit, DB participation is assessed based on level of engagement and the quality of the contribution to the discussion. DBs allow learners to learn through sharing ideas and experiences as they relate to course content. Because it is not possible to engage in two-way dialogue after a conversation has ended, no posts to the DB are accepted after the end of the unit. Learners must demonstrate an appropriate depth of understanding of course content to receive credit for having submitted substantive posts. Typically, this is achieved with 5–6 strong paragraphs for Main Posts and 2–3 strong paragraphs for Response Posts.


Consider a situation in which communication has not been effective in your organization.

  • Why did it fail?
  • How badly did it fail?
  • How could the leader have improved the likelihood of effective communication?


Using a situation in your organization, propose a communication that incorporates pre-announcement, communication during the event or project, and communication afterward.

  • What key things would you include as the leader of the organization? Why?
  • What role would motivation theory play?
  • How would you use the effective domain in planning communication?
  • What role would problem-solving processes play?
  • What do you recommend to leaders, concerning internal and external communication planning?
  • Cite your sources. Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of other plans that are proposed.