Class Participation (Spring 2023)

One of the biggest assets of online education is the ability of students to have a larger impact on their classmates’ course experience, sharing their insights, expertise, and ideas. Thus, participation is required as a way of pooling this wonderful resources for everyone’s benefit. However, we understand that requiring participation has a tendency to incite inauthentic participation. Our goal with the participation policy is to give students enough ways to fulfill their participation credit in the way that is most natural and useful to them.

There are a number of different ways to earn participation points. Our goal is for the participation policy to be “invisible” to most students, in that organic participation is sufficient to fulfill these requirements. If you are active on the course forum (e.g. posting high-quality topics or comments a couple times a week) and complete your peer review tasks, you shouldn’t ever need to worry about the participation policy. We expect that for the majority of students, you’ll earn your participation points without really trying.

The following are the ways you may earn participation credit.

  • 0.5 to 1.5 points: Provide a classmate a peer review. You will be assigned three peer reviews per assignment by default, and you may request to give up to three additional peer reviews per assignment. Reviews submitted within 4 days of the original assignment deadline are worth 1.5 points; within 7 days of the original assignment deadline are worth 1.0 points; and beyond 7 days are worth 0.5 points. Note that for all peer reviews, the peer review itself must be useful; simply filling out the form and writing a sentence or two isn’t sufficient to receive credit for peer reviews.
  • 0.1 to 3.0 points: Post a high-quality contribution on the course forum (actual point value varies by post; make sure your Georgia Tech email is attached to your the course forum account). (Maximum 40 points.)
  • 1.0 points: Complete one of the four course surveys (start-of-course, quarter-course, team selection, mid-course, and end-of-course), or other surveys indicated as eligible for participation points on the Quizzes page on Canvas.
  • 0.5 points: Submit a candidate exam question to the form on Canvas. (Maximum 10 points.)
  • 1.0 points: Complete this page’s secret survey before week 2 to indicate you read the entire syllabus; to access it, click the word ‘secret’ earlier in this sentence.
  • Additional points: Additional points may be awarded based on other things that come up (for example, completing a student spotlight or bringing in a guest for a Q&A).

Grading Information

Your number of participation points will be averaged out of 100 possible points and included as 10% of your final average. Earning 100 points or above will give 100% of the possible participation credit. To help you track your progress, we will post participation updates at least three times during the semester (around weeks 6, 12, and 17). Participation grades will be finalized on Friday of Week 17, so you should complete all participation activities by Thursday of Week 17.

It’s intentionally possible to complete your participation credit through peer review and surveys alone (if you request enough extra peer reviews), though the course forum and other mechanisms can certainly supplement that total. It generally would be very difficult to complete your participation credit without completing the majority of your assigned peer reviews, however.

There is no mid-semester deadline on participation; you can take entire weeks off if necessary as long as you earn your points at some point during the semester.