I recently came across an old (read: year 2000) paper which had a rubric for assessing the level of interactivity in an online course by Rablyer and Erkhaml at the State University of West Georgia: How Interactive are YOUR Distance Courses? A Rubric for Assessing Interaction in Distance Learning.
With a quick Google search I discovered that the authors updated this rubric four years later in an article published to the Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks.
Have a look at the newer rubric in this paper. I think it is pretty good. It focuses on five major elements that contribute to interactivity:
- Social and Rapport-building designs
- Interactivity in the Instructional Design of the course
- Interactivity with the Technology Resources
- Evidence of Learner Engagement
- Evidence of Instructor Engagement
I took the opportunity to run a recent course that I designed through the rubric and noted that this course scored approximately 18 out of a maximum 25 points. A score of 18 just barely places this course into the “High Interactive Qualities” category (range of 18-25). This rubric also helped me see where there is ‘room for improvement’ in the interactivity in this course. Run your course through this rubric to see where it lands. Let me know if you find this rubric useful and/or if you know of any other rubrics that assess interactivity in a distance course.