Creating opportunities for students to engage with their instructors, peers, and the course materials has shown to have a significant impact on their success. This engagement might take the form of discussions, activities, or other practice with course content. A key element to making engagement effective is to provide feedback to students so they can gauge their own learning.
For purposes of simplicity, Activities are distinguished here from Assignments primarily in that Activities have the goal of helping students learn or making content personally meaningful, and they have few if any points associated with them (i.e., low-stakes or failure tolerant). Assignments, on the other hand, typically have the goal of assessing learning and therefore carry a weightier grade.