What are Discussions?

Canvas provides an integrated system for class discussions, allowing both instructors and students to start and contribute to as many discussion topics as desired. Discussions can also be created as an assignment for grading purposes (and seamlessly integrated with the Canvas Gradebook), or simply serve as a forum for topical and current events. Discussions can also be created within student groups.

  • Help students start thinking about an upcoming Assignment or class discussion.
  • Follow-up on a conversation or questions that began in a face-to-face classroom.
  • Test student comprehension of important points made in class.
  • Debate contradictory ideas.
  • Brainstorm different approaches to a class problem.

Click here to view a video about Discussion Creation.

Note: Discussions are not the same as Announcements. Learn the difference between Announcements and Discussions.

How do I access Discussions?

How do I access Discussions?

Discussions are accessed within the Discussions link within Course Navigation.

How are Discussions Organized?

The Discussions Index Page is organized into three main areas: Discussions, Pinned Discussions, and Closed for Comments Discussions.

Learn more about each of these areas in the Discussions Index Page lesson.

How do I use Discussions?

Within Discussions you can:

Note: You can also use keyboard shortcuts to navigate individual discussion threads. Press the comma key and a pop-up window with keyboard shortcuts will appear for keyboard navigation.

What Settings Can I Control in Discussions?

You can control certain settings within Discussions: