"In an online environment, human interaction does not just happen naturally. Your online students need a way to get to know you, the instructor, and others. There are several ways to encourage your students to interact with each other. The idea is to be creative and set several guidelines for students to follow in order to stimulate asynchronous discussions."
You’ll find here a bunch of techniques and suggestions. Save them for future use.
Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/uggboy/5240738243/
Via Dennis T OConnor, Paula Silva