What are Sparks?

Sparks work a bit like upvotes or likes on other social platforms, but with a much more specific (and important!) purpose on Packback

Sparks are given to posts which truly “Sparked your Curiosity”, to show appreciation to the original writer and help the community recognize the most curious posts. Sparks also help other students recognize posts that have been inspiring to their classmates and gives professors valuable insight into what their students are most curious about.

How Do I Spark a Post?

To give a Spark to a question or response, simply click on the lightbulb icon on the top right-hand corner of the post. When you have successfully added a spark to a post you should notice that the spark count has changed and the icon will remain illuminated. 

A post with the lightbulb icon on the top right-hand corner and a 2 next to the icon indicating a number of sparks. “This sparked my curiosity” tooltip appears above the icon.

Do I Have a Limited Number of Sparks?

You're given a limited number of "Sparks" each week as your “allowance” because we want to ensure that there is real value behind both giving and receiving a Spark. (Imagine how chaotic the world would be if everyone has unlimited money).

Every week, all members of a community on Packback receive a new “allowance” of Sparks which appear in the Community Stats module (shown above) in the sidebar of the community as “Available Sparks”.

Any unused Sparks “expire” every week on Monday at 2AM CST, and a new allowance is granted. Sparks expiring helps to encourage students to give out their sparks weekly instead of saving them up.

How Do Sparks Impact My Grade?

Sparks are a tool for students and professors to show their appreciation for the posts on the platform which really sparked their curiosity and made them think. It's up to your professor if they want to count this toward your Packback grade. Thus, you should double-check with your professor for an answer on this!

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