For private journals, there are two options. The first option is to create single user groups, and create one group discussion topic. The topic will have separate threads for each group (student) which only the student and instructor will be able to see.
The other option for private journals involves OneNote Class Notebook which is also the suggested replacement for wikis.
Single User Group Discussion Topic
Watch the D2L video tutorial above and/or follow the instructions below.
To set this up in BOLT,
- In your course, click Communication.
- Click Groups.
- Click the New Category button.
- Give the category a name, like Private Journals.
- Enter a description too if you want.
- Select Single user, member-specific groups for the Enrollment Type.
- If you want to, select which sections to Restrict Enrollments to.
- Select Set up discussion areas.
- Select the forum you want to put the journal topics in, or create a new one.
- Select create new topic.
- Click Save.
- Select "create one topic with threads separated by group". (NOTE: This makes grading easier if you want to have one overall private journal grade!)
- Give the topic a title, such as "Private Journal"
- Enter a description if you want.
- Click Create and Next.
- Click Done.
- Review the category you set up and click Save.
- The main groups page will show with the new category. Each student is their own group.
Add a Grade Item to the Private Journal
- Click Communication, then Discussions.
- Find your forum and topic you just created.
- Click the drop down by the topic name.
- Click Edit Topic.
- Click the Assessment tab.
- Choose a grade item you already created or create a new one.
- For Score out of, enter the same point value you assigned the grade item.
- Add or create a rubric if you wish.
- Select "allow assessment of individual posts" if you want to assess each post over time to arrive at a cumulative journal grade, then select a calculation method. If you want to give one grade at the end of the journaling assignment, ignore this feature.
- Click Save and Close.
Reviewing Private Journal Discussions
How this works is, when you go into the topic, you will see ALL student posts. However, if you filter the topic by group, you can view each student at once so you are only viewing their private journal posts in the topic.
If you go into your Discussions list, you will see multiple threads and posts in the topic.
If you click into the topic, you will see threads authored by your various students. This is because the view defaults to show all groups at once.
When students visit the topic, they see only their threads. They will see text like "Tony Stark posted on [date] to Tony Stark", indicating the student posted to their own group which is their name.
If you want to filter the topic so you can view one student at a time, click "All Groups" then click on the student you want to view.
This will filter the topic so you only see that student's threads.
If you want to view the newest threads at the top of the page, click the Sort by selector and select Newest Thread. This will let you read the newest post by the student, ignoring the old posts you already read.