Pro Tip Tuesday: The Low Down on Graded Discussions

Filed in Canvas, didyouknow, features, HowTo by on February 26, 2019

Open Discussions

You’ve probably tried out the Discussion tool in Canvas before, but do you know about all the settings available? Here’s a few things you might not know:

You can require students to post before seeing other students posts, but you may want to lock down additional settings.

  • If you require students to post before they can see other student responses, you should disable the ability for students to edit and delete their own discussion posts.
  • If students can edit posts, they could just post a blank post or other low-quality content early on, then look at other students’ posts and return to edit their own.

Allowing file attachments to discussion posts is not the default setting.

  • If you want students to be able to attach files to discussion posts, you have to enable it from the Discussion page’s general settings (click the gear), or enable it in the course settings.

Open Settings


Threaded replies is not the default setting in Discussions.

  • In most cases, you will want to Allow threaded replies, so students can reply to other students’ replies (not just the instructor’s).

Finally- here’s a pro tip for your pro tip regarding Publishing!

  • Don’t forget: many course items display in more than one place, for example, graded Discussions show on the Discussions page and the Assignments page.  Also, if you link to your discussion posts in your Modules area, don’t forget to publish your module as well.

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