Educational Opportunity: Getting students to think critically about subjects is one of the biggest challenges in higher education. The FBF Discussion Assignment tool makes discussing arguments critically and in a nuanced manner easy, structuring the process.

Solution: A tool which lets teachers set up an elaborate discussion process in which students debate the assigned issues extensively. 

The teacher specifies the instructions, the things students should pay attention to when discussing the topics or rules for comment formulation, as well as the number of fellow students’ uploads each student needs to discuss. These settings allow for controlling the complexity and difficulty of the assignment.  

Students upload their work containing the material to be debated. This can be in any format, from documents to video/audio or even websites. 

Students can then use the social interface in the tool, as well as annotations, to discuss as required. To enable even deeper social learning, an additional step of open discussion can be added. This allows for a class-wide sharing of ideas, and is also done according to pre-written instructions. 

A final reflection step with a set word limit requirement lends additional benefits, requiring students to be mindful of the ideas they have discussed and the implications, as well as their overall learning process. 

Furthermore, individual deadlines can be set for the different steps, and progress is easily supervised with integrated, real-time analytics about student’s actions. Finally, the discussions in progress can always be viewed by the teacher, who can also weigh in with ideas or comments. 

To conclude, “Discussion Assignment” makes debating ideas and critical reflection engaging and fun, while also greatly simplifying it.

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