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Community Member

Is it possible to create a discussion where the responses are anonymous.

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I am teaching a class for the second time and I would like to get anonymous feedback from the students about changes I can make to improve the course materials or lectures. I would like to initiate a discussion with the students but I want their responses to be anonymous so they have an opportunity to provide candid feedback without any concern of retribution. Is this possible using the Canvas discussion tools?



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Community Team
Community Team

Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this discussion. Anonymous Discussion Forums has been in the discovery phase since early this year, and the product manager recently outlined the proposed features here. If you aren't already a member, please join the  Discussions/Announcements Redesign Group  to stay on top of developments and participate in design conversations.

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13 Replies
Community Champion

Hello  @gdaughdrill ‌, and welcome to the Canvas Community!  Unfortunately, the answer is "no."   We have a few faculty here who missed this feature, as it was on our previous learning management system.  While this appears to be on the Product Radar for Canvas as shown on this Feature Idea  there has not been an update lately.  Check that link, though.  Perhaps the Piazza integration referenced there may be of interest to your institution.

Community Coach
Community Coach

Hi  @gdaughdrill ‌...

 @kblack ‌ is correct that discussions can't be replied to anonymously.  I wanted to offer another suggestion.  Have you considered creating an ungraded survey (via Quizzes) in your course?  You could create a few questions for your survey including one where students could type feedback, and it would be submitted to you anonymously.  Here is a Canvas Guide I found for you that may be of help: (see the bottom of this Guide).

I hope this helps, Gary.

Can you please provide a working link for understanding what it means for an idea to be on the "product radar"? The links provided in the old feature request are not working.

Community Champion

Hi Briana; there was a blog post last year from  @Renee_Carney ‌ describing what the "product radar" means that was posted here:  New Ideation Stage:  Product Radar .  The general landing page for  Feature Ideas, in general (which I'm assuming you found, but just in case....) is here: .

Hope this helps.

Thank you for reporting the broken link in the feature idea,  @johnsonbria ‌; we've fixed it.

Community Champion

Hi  @gdaughdrill ‌ I was wondering if you want the students to be actually discussing back-and-forth with each other, or is the goal just to solicit anonymous feedback...? I use Google Forms for anonymous feedback, like for mid-semester surveys where I get feedback from the students about classes, and I've also got a Suggestion Box that's available any time. Students don't use it much, but I definitely think they should have an anonymous option, and Google Forms is good for that.

Suggestion Box 

I also have that in the sidebar to my class announcements:

suggestion box screenshot

Community Participant

I have been using anonymous graded survey to collect feedback for a midterm survey.  I use graded survey as ungraded survey does not somehow show up on the calendar.  I ask the questions of what should I start, stop and continue doing. The results are quite useful.

Community Member

Has there been any updates to this? Seems like an important tool. Piazza offers this feature and it works great.


Community Participant

This is an incomprehensible omission. How is it possible to design an LMS without giving the students an opportunity to submit feedback in a safe and nonthreatening way? I hope this will be corrected ASAP.