Online Talk Styles

It’s about day three of online lit and comp. It’s my first semester using the forum tools provided by WebCT Vista and I can already see that using them is going to be a pain in the rear. I’m used to more customizable set of conferencing tools, such as WebBoard and PhPBB, which, in my view, provide a better teaching environment complimentary to discussion of poetry and the like.

In Vista, the moderator can’t pick and choose replies to go after in a scroll pane. Often a student will make a particularly interesting entry or blunder and then can provide a focus. In threaded displays, it’s hard to tell what has been written given a thread title. It’s not about quick reading; it’s about use-discrimination and pointing people in a given direction, take it or leave it.

Perhaps it’s an interface issue. I don’t know.