Milestones

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Overview

Milestones allow you to create multiple participation requirements within a single discussion, encouraging students to engage in the discussion multiple times rather than all at once before the due date.

 

Milestone Setup

Depending on your LMS and assignment settings, when you click to edit your topic, you will either see dates filled in at the top:

Discussion: Topic Settings When LMS Syncs Dates

 

or you will be provided fields to fill in one or more assignment dates:

Discussion: Topic Settings When LMS Does Not Sync Dates

 

Click on the Milestones Due Dates tab and then click Add Milestones to add a milestone.

Discussion: Topic Settings with Milestones Not Setup

 

After adding a single milestone, several options are displayed:

Discussion: Milestone Settings

  1. At the top, you'll get to choose which assignment date you want to base the milestone completion dates on.  The setting defaults to the assignment due date, but you can change it to the available from date, available to date, or choose not to have any milestone completion dates.

    ⚠️ CAUTION -  Setting a Milestone requirement to be completed after the LMS assignment due date may result in student work being marked late by the LMS.  To avoid this, set all Milestones to before the due date or use the "Available to" or "Available from" dates to anchor your Milestones, and do not set an LMS specific "Due date"

  2. Auto-Grading can be enabled to automatically assign participation points based on milestone completion.  For more information on Auto-Grading visit the dedicated Auto-Grading help page.

  3. A minimum word count can be set for posts.  A value of 0 (default) means that any length post will be count towards meeting the milestone requirements.  When a minimum is set, students are still allowed to publish posts below the minimum, but they will be warned that the post will not count towards completing their milestone requirements.

  4. Likewise, you can set a similar word count minimum for comments, which behaves the same way as the word count minimum for posts.

  5. Within the Milestone section is the Milestone Complete By setting. This allows you to set when each individual milestone must be completed by relative to the date you selected above. You can either pick the date manually or use the - and + buttons to enter a number of days relative to your selected assignment date.

  6. For each milestone, you can select how many Posts, Comments and Reactions are needed to satisfy the requirements.

    (Note: in the collapsed view comments and replies are counted as one requirement)

  7. To count Comments and Replies as separate requirements, use the menu and select Expand Comment Requirements.

  8. At the bottom there is the Total Requirements section, which shows how many Posts, Comments, Replies and Reactions are required across all milestones.

Once all milestones have been entered, click the Save & Close button to save the settings and return to the discussion.

Teacher View

When milestones are setup in a discussion, teachers receive an overview of milestone progress across all of the students participating in the discussion:

Discussion: Instructor View of Milestone Progress

  • A solid green bar represents the percentage of students who have completed a milestone.
  • A light green bar represents the percentage of students who have made some progress towards completing a milestone.
  • A gray bar represent the percentage of students who have made no progress on a milestone.
  • The total number of Posts and Comments & Replies for the entire discussion are displayed next to the milestones.

Student View

Students receive a similar view to teachers when milestones are setup on a discussion, the main difference being the overview tracks only their personal progress:

Discussion: Student View of Milestone Progress

  • A solid green bar shows how much progress a student has made on a milestone.
  • A green checkmark appears next to milestones that have been completed.
  • Counts for Posts, Comments & Replies and Responses Received show the student's contribution to the discussion and reactions from others in the discussion respectively.

If a student is late in completing one or more milestones, they will be presented with a slightly different view:

Discussion: Student View of Late Milestone Progress

  • A solid red bar shows how much of milestone progress was completed after the milestone due date.
  • A red checkmark shows which milestones were completed after the milestone due date.
  • A red attention icon shows which milestones are incomplete and overdue.

 

Submissions to Grade Book

  • Submissions will show up in the grade book if the due date has passed or if all of the milestones are completed, whichever one occurs first.  No submissions are made for students who have not yet participated in the discussion.

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