full online discussion metadata visualization

I’ve finally entered all of the metadata information for the online discussions I’m using in my thesis. This includes the person who posts something, the date, and the size of the post. I worked through my earlier visualization mockup, and wanted to try it with the full set of data. So, here’s the Blackboard discussions (top image) and WordPress blog posts (bottom image):

It’s only the most basic of metadata, but already differences in activity patterns are becoming apparent. Both images are on the same time- and size- scales. The WordPress discussions appear to be using significantly longer posts and comments, spread over much more time. Blackboard discussions appear to be shorter posts, over briefer durations.

Next up, I get to code each post for Community of Inquiry model “presences” – as described by indicators for social, cognitive and teaching contributions in the posts. I’ll figure out some way to overlay that information on top of the basic metadata visualization.