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Discussions - Students' view after, "Mark All as Read" chosen by Instructor

I have a course with 11 Discussion Groups.  Students post responses to Discussions for that week - i.e., over a 14-week semester, they are posting to (at least) 14 Group Discussions.

Each week, I review their posts.  I'd like to account for that review by making sure that all of their posts are noted via the, "Mark All as Read" feature.

This is where I'm a bit confused, and will concede that I may be missing something.

After students have posted to a Discussion:

  • I visit the 'home page' of that week's Discussion
  • I see a list of all of the Groups on the left
  • Across from each Group, on the right, there are two small #'s adjacent to each other:
    • the # highlighted in blue represents the # of posts I have not marked as read,
    • the # highlighted in black represents the total # of posts from that Group
  • At this same "home page" of that week's Discussion, there is a 3-dot drop-down menu, with the first option of "Mark All as Read."
  • While it would be great if I could simply choose that option, "Mark All as Read," to indicate that I have read all Groups' Discussion posts, choosing that option at this "home page" of that week's Discussion seems to result in .... nothing.  The numbers representing posts that I've read do not change.
  • I've figured out that I have to go into each of the 11 weekly Groups' Discussions, choose the same, "Mark All as Read" for only one Group at-a-time for that Discussion, in order for Canvas to change the indication that the posts were read.

My questions:

  • When I choose, "Mark All as Read" for a Groups' posts to a Discussion, what do students see?
  • Is there a way that Canvas will display "All as Read," if I choose, "Mark All as Read" from each Discussion's "home page?"
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Community Coach
Community Coach

Hello there, @mcmaguire ...

Thank you for posting the detail about what you are seeing in each of your discussion topics.  I was able to re-create a similar workflow in my own sandbox course based on what you described.  Here is what I've found:

  • The "Mark All as Read" is only for you...not for your students.  So, you can mark everything as "read", but this would not change anything for any of your students...since they may or may not have read some of those same replies yet.  They would have their own "Mark All as Read" option, too...if they wanted to use it.
  • The option you've described for "Mark All as Read" does not immediately change the small number on the right side of the topic for unread postings that are within that topic.  For example, it would not immediately change "6 / 15" to "0 / 15".  Rather, selecting "Mark All as Read" seems to only remove the blue dot to the left of each person's reply to the topic.  When you refresh your discussion topic screen, the small blue number disappears (in this case, 6 from my example), and the only number you would see is the number in gray that displays how many replies there are in the topic.  In my example, this would be 15.  So, there really isn't an "All as Read" option that you're asking about, but you would know that everything was read because the first of the two numbers wouldn't be displayed on the right side of the topic.  And, if you return to your "Discussions" index page where all your topics are listed, you would see that the topic should have something like "0 / 15" (or however many replies there are) next to the topic in question...letting you know there aren't any replies you haven't read yet.

I hope this information will be of help to you.  Please let Community members know if you have any other questions about this...thanks!  Take care, and be well.