Chapter 1: Innovative Introductions

By the end of this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Create engaging discussion forums. (LO1)
  • Investigate new forms of media to engage students. (LO3)

Introductions in any course are a great ice breaker. Introductions can unite students of similar characteristics or backgrounds. Introductions are also an opportunity for faculty to learn more about the students they will be working with throughout the course.

There’s no rule that says introductions have to be a certain way (and if there is … why?). Consider offering innovative introduction methods that shake up how students introduce themselves. Not only will this be more fun, but you may actually learn more about the student than if you just ask: Name, Degree Program, Location, and a Fun Fact.

One of my favorite introduction forums to use with faculty is this:

  • Share three pictures from your life and share a story as to why they are important to you. Consider the content from the provided learning materials about story-telling. You may use CC Search to find pictures if you do not feel comfortable using your own photos.

I also include what I call: Learning Style Alternatives in most forums, because I know writing/typing, does not meet the needs of all learners.

  • My learning styles alternatives statement is: If you would like to create an audio clip or visual instead of writing a response for this post, that is acceptable as long as it meets the discussion forum brief.

The Art of the Introduction

Offering interesting introduction forums allows students and faculty to connect in unique, memorable ways. Below are ideas for different types of courses, please review all of the ideas, because some ideas, with a few modifications can apply to other courses as well. Select the blocks on the progress bar, at the bottom of the slides, to view each of the ideas. You can also enlarge the slides using the double-pointed arrow in the bottom right corner of the selection.




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Advanced Engagement by Andrea Bearman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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