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Supporting the Encouragement of Forum Participation

Garg, Aashna and Paepcke, Andreas (2017) Supporting the Encouragement of Forum Participation. Technical Report. Stanford InfoLab.


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We analyze the forum contribution rates during forty offerings of 12 college courses reaching back to 2011. The goal is to identify moments during the quarter when encouragement for passive students might be timely. We started with a social graph model of each forum archive. From those models we computed weighted out degrees, and page ranks for each student. The out degrees reflect the number of posts a student contributes. We performed change point analyses through bootstrap procedures over the CUSUM data of these post contributions through each quarter. We thereby identified significant week by week changes in the rate at which the top ten percent of forum contributors post messages. We hypothesize that such change points might be appropriate encouragement opportunities, and we find that sudden rate shifts do occur along regular patterns, primarily in science and engineering courses. We propose and demonstrate the use of control charts to monitor forum traffic, and show how the historic data can be used to provide personalized encouragement messages.

Item Type:Techreport (Technical Report)
ID Code:1154
Deposited By:Andreas Paepcke
Deposited On:25 May 2017 11:49
Last Modified:25 May 2017 11:58

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