Canvas Discussions is an asynchronous discussion board tool that is part of Canvas. Instructors and students access Discussions through the course navigation button that is within a Canvas site.

How can I use Canvas Discussions in teaching?

  • Prepare a thread for students to introduce themselves to the class at the beginning of the semester.
  • Create a Q&A thread for the class and ask that students post questions there instead of contacting you by email.  You can also encourage students to answer questions.
  • Create a “water cooler” thread for students to chat about topics unrelated to the class. This allows students to connect with each other and helps build social presence in the course.
  • Pose questions relevant to the module content for discussion and reflection.
  • Ask students to use the audio and video tools in the Rich Content Editor to post their responses.
  • Have students work through a case or problem.
  • Embed a media prompt (a diagram, video, etc.) for students to respond to.

What is unique about Discussions?

  • Discussion topics can be organized as focused or threaded discussions. 
  • Discussions can be created as an assignment for grading purposes.
  • Discussions can serve as a forum for topical and current events
  • Discussions can also be created within student groups.
  • Discussions can be populated with various media content.
  • You can subscribe to discussions for posting updates.

Technical requirements

Discussions are a part of Canvas, so there is no software to install. Canvas Discussions will run in your web browser and on almost any internet connection.


Modified on: Wed, Mar 11, 2020 at 10:29 AM

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