This fully online course was originally developed a few years ago by faculty at the University of Minnesota. When I was asked to teach the course I made several changes that I felt would increase student participation in online discussions and added a group project. In particular, note the use of the Tuesday – Monday school week. This was something I started doing a couple semesters earlier and I liked how students seemed more involved over the entire week. Those who tended to get caught up on the weekend were still part of ongoing discussions and many students would return to continue discussions on Sunday and Monday.
The group project was also something I had tried a couple semesters before. Nearly all students commented that it was the best part of the class so I have since looked for other creative ways to bring in group projects in online classes.