10 Tips for Moderating QualBoards

1.           Set the discussion tone in the introduction.
§         Be interesting and personal.
§         Be complete but not overly wordy.
§         Make the discussion fun.
§         See Quick Start Guide for an example.

2.           Minimize completely closed-ended questions.  Within the same post, include follow-up probes to any closed ended questions to encourage full explanations of the closed ended response.
§         Example questions that might appear in a single post:  What brand of toothpaste do you use most often and why do you prefer that brand?

3.           Use video, pictures and text formatting to create visual interest in your posts and demonstrate to participants how to do the same.

4.           Ask no more than 10 questions in any one sitting.  Be respectful of participants' time.  Requiring more than 30 minutes at a sitting creates participant burn-out.

5.           After the first day, begin the day by reminding participants to review and respond to the previous day's posts.

6.           End each day with a "sneak peek" of the next topic to generate interest for participants to return.

7.           Remember that QualBoards are dynamic not static discussions.  As with face-to-face, learn as you go and make changes to your guide as needed.  Resist the temptation to load the guide and forget it.  Edit the guide to reflect the discussion.

8.           Keep QualBoards open for a couple of days after the ending day to allow stragglers to catch up.

9.           Remind participants when you probe a specific post.  Often, participants do not go back and review previous posts so they will not see a probe.  Therefore, send them an e-mail asking them to respond to your probe.

10.      Model the behavior you desire.  Be upbeat, descriptive, fun and interactive. Write like you talk.  Be conversational, personal and express emotion.  Relax.  This is a conversation, not a report.  Don't get hung up on spelling and grammar.  Have fun.

by Jim Bryson - QualBlog

About QualBlog

QualBlog is a blog provided by 20/20 Research, Inc. and written by Jim Bryson.  QualBloJim at fence.jpgg will include stories on qualitative techniques, the qualitative research industry, and other items of interest to qualitative researchers.  We will post often from sources around the globe so we encourage you to keep coming back and use QualBlog as one of your information sources that keep you "up to speed" on qualitative happenings and techniques. 
Please share your knowledge and or comments through the "comments" link that appears just under each post title.  It won't post immediately, but it will get there eventually.  Also, any suggestions can be sent directly to me at jimb@2020research.com.  I'm looking forward to seeing you here!

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