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Grading Discussion in the Discussion Stream

Grading Discussion in the Discussion Stream


I often use the Discussion feature as a Do Now activity for students in my classes. I try and reward students with points for participating in the discussions daily. Sometime going through the Speedgrader to grade these can be a longer process than what is necessary. I think if we could somehow include a grading box right along in the student stream where they post, it would be much easier to read replies, ensure student understanding, as well as saving time to grade students 1 by 1.

Community Participant

I've revived a form of this at " style="color: #2989c5; , for voting starting Nov 2.

Community Team
Community Team

This idea is one of the lucky ones that was selected to get a little more time for voting as part of our evolution of the feature idea process. It was selected because of it's vote count and/or comment thread.

*Selection criteria: Most (not all) ideas that received 70+ votes in their initial voting round.

Community Contributor

I like this idea too, and I just phrased it a little differently from a design perspective that I think you might like. 

Community Participant

Interesting! Looks like the grade would still be applied per student, though, rather than per post?

Community Participant

A more intuitive way to grade discussion posts right in the discussion would help me "sell" the Discussions feature to my teachers. The clunky back-and-forth with Speedgrader turns a lot of them off.

Community Member

I used this feature all the time in Moodle and desperately miss it. I was able to give points on each post and the student's discussion grade was the accumulation of points. It was incredibly easy to do and I miss it Smiley Happy

Community Member

For me, this all boils down to one of two design changes. Either

  1. Place entire threads in SpeedGrader—or at least give us the ability to respond to a post from within SpeedGrader, or
  2. Create the ability to grade individual posts—using a rubric—in the main discussion threads themselves.

Of course, you could do both 1 AND 2, and everyone would be happy at that point!

Community Member

I voted up for this, but I agree with Allan Trautman above. When grading student Discussion activity, it would be helpful not only to see the student's posts and replies, it would also help to see MY reply to that student (if I replied in the Discussion). I want to ensure I provide "regular and substantive interaction." If I did not reply to a student in the Discussion, I may wish to reply to that student using private feedback in Speedgrader. Right now, it is inconvenient using the 'open two windows' approach. If we can't have the grading tool in the context of the Discussion itself, it would work for me if I can at least see each student's post and replies in Speedgrader along with my reply to that student. Then I can easily decide if I wish to give that student more feedback or not.

Community Contributor

Would it be possible to receive an update on the consideration for this feature? Our institution just switched form Moodle, which had forum rating. Some sort of equivalent would be super helpful, especially for classes with a lot of students.



Community Team
Community Team

Hey  @ewest  Welcome to the Canvas Community (even if somewhat belatedly)!

Seeing as you mentioned that you are relatively new to Canvas and the Community I thought I'd point out a few resources in case you hadn't seen them yet.  In Studio we have a link to in case you are interested in learning more.  We also have a button on the right side of the same page that links to a sort of the current ten percent of ideas by vote count.  Every quarter our Product team will give an update on these ideas - are planning to build it in the near term, are we not going to build it soon but will keep it under consideration, or will we never build this (and why not).  

Currently this particular idea is not in that top ten percent but that doesn't mean we won't consider it.  When we are planning a new development project (aka a Product Priority) our product managers read every related feature idea and often benefit from the comments and use cases and descriptions people post on the various related ideas. 

Community Member

My related request to add to the possibilities:

In Speed Grader, I'd like a simple way to connect a discussion post with its thread. For example, right now it says "from [name of the discussion forum]". Would it be possible to add a "Jane Doe's thread" to that tag with a link to just the thread?

Community Participant

I like this idea of being able to 1) grade individual posts, and 2) grade posts right there within the full discussion thread.

I've also just submitted an idea to improve discussion SpeedGrader by adding the ability to expand on the discussion thread.‌ What do you all think?

Community Member

I am adding to the thread to state that I would like to...

  • individually grade each post based on a rubric
  • grade the posts in/as a thread
  • have a different value for the starting posts and replies
    • I give students more points for the original post and less points for replies to other students' posts.

In order to grade my discussion forums, I have to read the thread and grade in excel.  Then I have to go into speedgrader to put the grades in the rubric.  It is very time consuming to find each student out of a list of 60+ in excel to grade their replies when I should be able to grade each post in the original forum as I read them.

Community Participant

I think this is a more reasonable feature idea to start with. Most grading happens in speedgrader already anyways. And it seems a LOT easier to just expand the speedgrader view than it does to build an entire grading system/implement speedgrader functionality in a new area of Canvas. 

Community Member

I like this suggestion as well. I prefer to use the SpeedGrader to review discussions. I can write personal or public content comments. I wish I could then click a checkbox to say make public that would enter my comment as a REPLY to the discussion. But, this suggestion would be a good solution. 

Community Participant

I actually came here to suggest this idea and found  @laurenbrown2014 ‌'s idea instead. I could see either, or ideally both, of these working. From my perspective, if I have a graded discussion I'd specifically like that to be my first pass responding to my students and to be able to offer them a public response in addition to a potential private comment. Honestly though, the discussions generally need so much work that even though I came here to recommend this, it's far from the highest priority.

Community Participant

Not being able to grade within the discussion thread is very frustrating. In speed grader, you can't see the post that students are replying to. I want to support group discussions, but the grading process makes it miserable. 

Community Participant

There's a separate voting on the idea of having two grading options for discussion posts and replies. I've been using excel also. It's really not efficient. 

Community Member

I am continually amazed that this basic feature is still missing. Grading for participation in discussions is overly complicated and time-consuming for instructors - 4 years later, and we still can't do it!

Community Member

It would save so much time If we could grade and comment on the public DB at the same time like they do in Blackboard. 

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In the Canvas Community Ideas space, you can share, converse, and rate idea conversations related to software improvements to Canvas products.