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perryyee
Community Participant

Blueprint course: will changes to discussion settings impact student replies in published child courses?

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Curious to know how "safe" student replies are when changing a blueprint's discussion thread setting. I would hate to push out a sync to published courses and accidentally delete student responses because I've enabled liking.

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kblack
Community Champion

Thanks for the shout-out  @chofer ‌. Unless  @lindalee ‌ has any horror stories to relate in her experience, I think you're perfectly safe with enabling something as innocuous as "liking."  But let's be clear:  "Liking" is an option in a Discussion that an instructor can easy change back, even if everything imaginable in a course is otherwise locked down. The key blueprint/lock items are content, points, due date, and availability dates.  Even with ALL of those locked on a blueprint, it will not make a difference, in theory, since an instructor can easily change that option back if they spotted it and wanted to edit it again.

The one you should really worry about, however, is if you enabled the sync option to Include Course Settings and you enabled the ability (on the main Discussion or course settings) to allow students to Edit and Delete Their Own Posts.  That specific course/discussion setting will carry over upon syncing, so in theory a faculty member who otherwise has that setting disabled may suddenly find students able to delete their own posts....but not other posts, of course.

Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your school of thought on this), those settings can be re-enabled/disabled by the faculty member quite easily, as those settings are NOT lockable in blueprints.  So if you enabled the course-wide setting to allow students to edit/delete their own posts, the faculty member can change it back, but by then it may be too late and a student could have conceivably deleted their own reply. (But not other student's replies, of course.)

A long answer, I'm afraid, but I just want to make sure you're aware of this difference with discussion settings versus discussion options.  I hope this helps a bit,  @perryyee  .

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4 Replies
chofer
Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi there,  @perryyee ...

I would think that your student discussion postings would be safe, but I am going to bring in a couple fellow Community members who know much more about Blueprint courses than I do:  @lindalee  and  @kblack ‌.  Hopefully, one or both of them will get back to you soon on this.

kblack
Community Champion

Thanks for the shout-out  @chofer ‌. Unless  @lindalee ‌ has any horror stories to relate in her experience, I think you're perfectly safe with enabling something as innocuous as "liking."  But let's be clear:  "Liking" is an option in a Discussion that an instructor can easy change back, even if everything imaginable in a course is otherwise locked down. The key blueprint/lock items are content, points, due date, and availability dates.  Even with ALL of those locked on a blueprint, it will not make a difference, in theory, since an instructor can easily change that option back if they spotted it and wanted to edit it again.

The one you should really worry about, however, is if you enabled the sync option to Include Course Settings and you enabled the ability (on the main Discussion or course settings) to allow students to Edit and Delete Their Own Posts.  That specific course/discussion setting will carry over upon syncing, so in theory a faculty member who otherwise has that setting disabled may suddenly find students able to delete their own posts....but not other posts, of course.

Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your school of thought on this), those settings can be re-enabled/disabled by the faculty member quite easily, as those settings are NOT lockable in blueprints.  So if you enabled the course-wide setting to allow students to edit/delete their own posts, the faculty member can change it back, but by then it may be too late and a student could have conceivably deleted their own reply. (But not other student's replies, of course.)

A long answer, I'm afraid, but I just want to make sure you're aware of this difference with discussion settings versus discussion options.  I hope this helps a bit,  @perryyee  .

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lindalee
Community Champion

To add to Ken Black's response: Ken is correct that changes made in the template won't affect existing student replies -- though as he rightly points out, certain changes to course settings may affect whether students can edit/delete their replies or attach files to their replies.

One factor that I want to note is that if any unlocked attributes of the discussions have been changed in the child sites, the certain changes made in the template may no longer sync as expected.

We typically see this after we've adjusted due dates in child sites. After that point, making changes to unlocked attributes (so things like threaded responses, liking, posting before seeing replies, etc.) may not sync. You may see a due date or

content exception in the sync history noting this. (This problem is discussed in the archived feature idea https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/9927" modifiedtitle="true" title="Blueprint: Sync all unedited....)

Good luck!

-Linda

perryyee
Community Participant

Thanks to both  @kblack ‌ and  @lindalee ‌ for the clarification - and to  @chofer  for finding these experts!

Fortunately, we won't need to adjust any additional settings beyond liking. We are looking at methods of "pinning" posts within a discussion and plan to use the strategy in Re: Pinning discussion replies as our workaround.