Critical dialogues are the means by which an online course is conducted. Most online courses contain a discussion board on which weekly discussion questions are posted, either by the instructor or by one of the students, as assigned. Students are then expected to respond to the discussion question and to one another, providing the means by which an online discussion occurs. In so doing, students are expected to demonstrate higher level thinking or critical thinking ability. Given that the online course is generally conducted in a text-based environment, one means of stimulating critical dialogue is through the provision of open-ended questions that allow for the contribution of multiple opinions and viewpoints, moving students away from textbook-based boundaries into collaboratively constructed areas of knowledge and meaning ...

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