How to Write a Discussion Board Post: First-Rate Guidelines for Students

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discussion board post

Teachers often advise their students to get a thorough understanding of the classroom content with the help of a discussion board. This space is created to boost cooperation and let the students take part in discussing different questions and topics relevant to their studies. It is a great tool for students who do not feel comfortable giving answers verbally. Instead, they learn how to write a discussion board post effectively and show that they have mastered the course content in writing.

One of the common uses for discussion boards is to enable the students to use hyperlinks to the corresponding content from the Internet resources. Usually, there is no synchronization in discussion boards, and that makes them different from the classroom environments as the opportunities for conversation are unique.

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Actually, a discussion board post is just one more type of academic assignment. Students have to get used to it and understand which approach is the most productive and suitable for them. When learning the specifics of writing effective discussion posts, they learn how to be active in the online discussions and share their fresh ideas with the professor and classmates. The ultimate goal of such tasks is not only to get a tick that the task is done but also to make a valuable contribution to the overall discussion.

What You Should Do Before Actual Writing:

  • Study the question or prompt given by your professor. Take notes of the requirements on referencing, word count, deadline, and special instructions added to this particular task. For example, is it a single question to be answered or a series of questions that you need to connect?
  • Make a schedule. Time management is the key to timely submission. Having a schedule, you will not waste your time and forget about the dates set as deadlines for the assignment or its parts, such as the post itself and comments to the posts of other students.
  • Narrow down the ideas. You have to stick to a key idea and be sure whether you give your arguments for or against a particular issue or approach.

What You Should Do When Working on Your Discussion Board Post:

  • It is always recommended to read through the posts of other students before you get down to writing yours. You will be better informed about the ideas of your peers, and it will even be possible to refer to some of their statements.
  • Do not type your answer on the discussion board right away as it is possible to submit an incomplete draft by accident. Use MS Word or any other application to be sure that you can complete your writing, edit it, and only then make it visible to everybody.
  • Your readers will be thankful if you would make your text structured. Headings and titles are welcome.
  • Do not start your post too abruptly. Let your ideas flow smoothly. Your readers should not feel overwhelmed, so give them some time to get into the topic.
  • Mind the audience of your post. It should not sound too informal as you need the reaction from your professor, not only your peers.
  • Sound professional and avoid jokes. You do not want your peers to misinterpret your ideas. Out of the face-to-face environment, the funny things may seem to be rude.

What You Should Do When Giving a Response to a Peer’s Post:

  • Mention the names of your peers in every response.
  • Avoid sounding too dominant. Let other students know which ideas you find interesting in their posts. Ask questions if you want to keep the discussion going.
  • Remember that you respond to a post not to convince someone that you are right but to make the discussion active and productive.
  • Show respect to the ideas of other students. Avoid confrontations.
  • Respond to a post, quoting the brightest ideas from there.
  • Try to sound specific instead of being general in your ideas.
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What Are the Features of a Perfect Topic for Discussion Board Posts?

Our professional discussion board post writing service has prepared a series of advice for those who want to excel in this type of writing. So, a great topic for the discussion board post should:

  • Be relevant to the content of the course.
  • Show that you have an insight into the learned content.
  • Encourage interaction.

Stage 1: Get a thorough understanding of what discussion posts aim at

It is natural that the professor and students in the classroom choose a relevant subject matter for every discussion. Online discussion posts offer the same interaction that takes place in the virtual classroom. You do not actually speak, but your keyboard lets you share your ideas with your peers.

Make sure that the language and the tone of your posts are conversational. Treat your response to a post as a bridge to a real-life conversation and enjoy your participation.

Stage 2: Get ready

Get a specific point in your post. Do the required research, read all the materials, and collect your thoughts to present your point of view in a comprehensible and well-grounded manner.

Stage 3: Be careful with the instructions to your particular discussion post

Are you sure that you have read the post you have to comment on? Check twice. Then you should re-read the guidelines to your writing assignment to learn whether it is a personal response, a task to react to someone’s writing via mere repeating the same ideas, or it is a combination of both.

Start commenting only after you read all the discussion prompts and a list of points to react to. Reading all the materials after you know the task, you will be focused on the essential points instead of getting a general idea.

Stage 4: Focus on a specific point

Try to get a clear idea of what you would like to tell your professor and peers. Do not go beyond the limits. All the ideas you give should be relevant. What will give you the highest grade? If you manage to connect real-life, theoretical knowledge, and your own ideas, you will get positive comments from your peers and a good evaluation from your professor.

(Hint: In case you need some clarifications about the topic for discussion, you can contact your professor and get all the answers. The only thing is to do that in advance.)

Stage 5: Collect the materials and evidence that support your idea

No matter how strong your idea is, it requires theoretical backup in the form of a piece of news, course materials, research, or even a case from your own or someone else’s experience. If your post comprises some of those backup materials, it will look stronger. If you select such materials before writing, you will just get them from your list and integrate them into a newly-written text to demonstrate your insight into the topic and your in-depth knowledge.

Proper citing is a must-have for every reference in your post. Do not think that when referring to someone else’s writing in your discussion post you can simply borrow their ideas. If you cite some materials without mentioning the author, title, and date of the source, you will be blamed for plagiarism. Discussion post citations should not be formal, but they cannot be missed out.

It will be easier for the forum members to respond to your post and give answers to the questions you ask if you do proper referencing.

Stage 6: Proceed to writing

Now it is time to write an actual discussion board post. When you have laid down all your thoughts in writing, use a reliable spell checker to avoid typos and inconsistencies in spelling. Check whether the structure of your post is proper and add bullet points to help your readers understand your points. If it is possible technically, try using a preview tool to evaluate the post before your readers see it. We recommend using Microsoft Word or any other text editor to write the text and after that, you can just copy and paste the text to the board.

You have to be careful with the rules of using discussion boards. Write your own post and then add responses to the posts of your peers if the guidelines say so. Do the task to choose the post in the same way you would do that in class. Respond to the posts that you find interesting and informative.

Read the rules in the course guidelines and your syllabus before you start writing.

Your posts should be meaningful. Short responses that just state that you agree to the point of view of other peers will not bring you good grades. It is essential to add details and further ideas. It is not enough to say, “I agree with John’s post.” However, if you state, “I agree with John as some cases from my personal experience confirm that…”, your answer becomes more meaningful and adds to the discussion.

It is not a must to agree with the posts of your peers. You can disagree as well, but it should be done in a polite manner that will not offend anybody. It is important to add explanations why you think so.

Your discussion posts should express your personality and your attitude to the discussed topic. The discussion should not be based on theory only and should bring real-life experience to the course knowledge. Such a connection of theory and experience will make your post even more meaningful.

Stage 7: Do not be late with your posts

It may happen that you have outstanding ideas for your posts on the topic, but you do not have time to work on them. In that case, effective discussion board post writing help is a great solution. Professors cannot evaluate late discussion posts high, so you should be an early bird to get the worm, even if it is online.

Always check on the deadline for your assignment. If you have to make a post or respond to the posts of other students, you have to do that before that deadline expires.

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Hopefully, our tips are helpful in explaining what a discussion board post is and you can write it on your own. However, if you are unsure how to write a discussion board post, do not hesitate to contact us, and our expert writers will help you.

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