This week I am struggling with pinning down directions and communications within the online classroom.  I find many questions answered, but in several areas.  I find instructions on the syllabus (paper version) and in the online classroom.  I jump back and forth trying to find the instructions and communications that work best for me.   I felt the same reading Habermas for the first time.  The ideas were presented in different ways, stories told with similar meanings, and I struggled to figure out the message.  When I am overcome by information overload, I need time for things to settle.  When I return to the information, I can begin organizing in a way that works for me.  This is a challenge of web-based instruction.  Students seek information in areas they feel the information should be found.  This information has to be placed in multiple areas and described in various ways for all students.  Seeking mutual understanding….

The question was posed about discourse and debate.  A discourse can turn into a debate, but when I think of the word debate, the beginning intentions are different.  If one side begins a discourse with the intention to change the opinion of the other person, they may want to engage in debate or argument. Formal or informal, the intention may not be obvious until the discourse is over.