As wonderful as the leveling effect of online classes can be, it is occasionally inconvenient for the instructor of an online class to be just another voice in the forum.
I love Moodle’s nested forums, and the way it shows everyone’s profile image, but even these visual cues aren’t enough to say, “Instructor post! Pay attention!”.
A bit of HTML to the rescue. I’m currently using a Horizontal Rule in a color to mark off my posts just a little bit, without being jarring.
The code I put at the beginning and end of my post is just
<hr size=2 color=blue>
If I wanted to be even more obvious, I could change the background color of my posts, which is what we do with the sticky posts at Pedagogy First! This would be just:
depending on the LMS. One could also use all italics or a different text color, but I prefer to use something that students wouldn’t ordinarily be doing in their own posts.
Such a little thing, but it can really make a difference on a page full of posts!