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Order Discussion Posts from Newest to Oldest

Order Discussion Posts from Newest to Oldest

(16)
Currently, the discussion posts are ordered from oldest to newest.  A student/professor has to scroll or go to the last page and then scroll to get to the latest post.

 

Canvas REALLY needs to re-order this so that newest discussion posts appear at the top of the first page so that it is easy to find current conversations.

 

This topic had 100+ likes in the old community and I was really surprised not to see it on here already (I searched for this using several different search terms).   I sure hope we don't have to go through and re-idea every single feature request that had at least 30 likes and was years old with no action or response from Instructure.

This idea has been developed and deployed to Canvas

For more information, please read through the  Canvas Release Notes (2021-06-19).

135 Comments
esommer
Community Participant

What a terrific idea! For an instructor to be able to pin a new post to the top for the exact reason you indicate. I'm always worried when I make a correction because I'm not sure students will see it--so I sometimes resort to making an announcement as well.

I continue to agree with everyone that Canvas is sorely lacking in improving a key resource that optimizes online learning and helps students and instructors communicate. Time to update this resource!

barnold
Community Member

This is such a basic functionality it is hard to believe it isn't there yet!  Needs to be done ASAP.

barnold
Community Member

Yes, agreed. I was surprised to see it not considered (or wasn't put in at the beginning) because it pretty much an industry standared - available in almost every application out there and it makes it really difficult to grade and for students to read if they have to always scroll. Seems like a "no brainer" so I would like to hear from the development committee why they aren't considering it. I wonder if there is something especially complicated about the code that would allow it.

Becca Arnold

Professor of Economics and Sustainability

San Diego Mesa College

kseemann
Community Member

I have like most Canvas teachers, a large class of posted replies to a discussion.  Replies I have to go through and grade.  Its a huge tedious job with large enrolment numbers. But its made so much worse as a teacher, if each time I grade I have to scroll, scroll, scroll, and ....scroll scroll scroll until I see a posted reply not yet graded.

Its would be perfect if Canvas could add a tiny SORT recent to last for posted replies so the most recent appears at the top of the reply list.

It could be even more awesome if Canvas added a "filter" on posted replies for 1) not yet graded, and 2) no teacher replies.  This way, I can set the two filters on ((1) not yet graded, and 2) no teacher replies.), and sort them with most recent to top of the reply list.  Thus making my assessments of blog soooooooooooo much more efficient and more enjoyable.

barnold
Community Member

I am surprised this even needs a vote - that it wasn't always available - and to find out it was considered awhile ago but not implemented is even more surprising. It's such a common functionality and the need is so clear. With out the ability to sort of create threads within a discussion board it's nearly impossible for students or teachers to navigate through.

Becca Arnold

Professor of Economics and Sustainability

San Diego Mesa College

edward-gillan
Community Member

How is it possible that this question was raised 5 years ago and such a basic functionality is not part of an otherwise messy long discussion board?  With the COVID online instruction forced upon us, it is clear that Canvas functionality must improve much more quickly to adapt to current needs.  Scrolling to the bottom of a discussion board to answer a new student question is not only backwards as the default, but it is not helpful for the student.  The only alternative I can see is to create weekly discussion boards and not use topic specific boards.

esaunders2
Community Member

I concur. A button choosing how they should display would be best!

jeffrey_weimer
Community Contributor

I dare say that, after five years, something else is now even more frustrating.

Suppose that I want to reply to a student's question. Suppose that I want to include a link to a Module or File or Assignment as a reference. Suppose that the discussion list is long. So long, that the links are now well beyond immediate access ... way up at the top of the discussion thread. I CANNOT SELECT THE LINK directly. I have to scroll all the way back to the top of the discussion list to select the link that I want.

The approach that restricts discussion threads to a chronological list has absolutely become one of the worst ways that I can imagine as a way for instructors to respond efficiently to questions that students post. At least on Discourse (which follows the same chronological thread ordering), I can answer a post question *while I scroll through the discussion list viewing it in the panel above*.

In a fit of frustration, I would be inclined to encourage Canvas to give up the fight and contract out their Discussion forums to the Discourse API. We'd get a discussion-moderating tool that has proven itself to work efficiently and that has been adapted in a significant number of places (i.e. would be fully familiar to instructors and students alike). The biggest benefit is, we would have it right now.

esommer
Community Participant

I can't agree more with everyone on this thread who wants Discussion Boards available with options for sorting newest to oldest or reverse.

ESPECIALLY as the Canvas producers likely have just found themselves with a significant new client base as education goes online during this pandemic.

PLEASE, Canvas developers, make this happen! And you all cannot figure it out, then please consult with some experts from Google or Microsoft to help you accomplish this important function! #Discussion Boards order

dtheriault
Community Contributor

I have created a pinned "Help Desk" in my Canvas course. It makes perfect sense that the newest requests would be seen at the top. Please please please allow us the OPTION to sort discussion replies by oldest or newest first. Please. 

 @clonghb ‌ #discussion board group

scottdennis
Community Team
Community Team

Thats a righteous beard, David, and the image reminds me of a Lemon Jelly video (a good thing Smiley Happy ).

peeksas
Community Participant

I use CourseSites which is a free, yet fully functional, version of Blackboard. It will make your life so much easier if you use the discussion board with large classes.

freda_goodman
Community Member

This option is crucial and should happen immediately. I have never before worked on a platform that ordered discussions this way. My students are replying to old posts and the later ones get no replies from classmates. 

KimHolly
Community Member

In this remote learning phase, technological sufficiency is imperative. We (teachers) are using discussion boards now more than ever, possibly. With that in mind, functionality is a key component to platform success. In order to use discussion boards seamlessly, it would be ideal to at the very least to have the ability to have newer posts appear at the top rather than the bottom. As it stands, it is a very annoying part of the course to use discussion boards, as we are constantly having to scroll to the bottom of a discussion board while having an active discussion. In courses where you have 40+ students and you are asking them to all participate and respond, scrolling to the bottom to read comments becomes tedious and defeats the advantage of the technology in the first place. Please get this fixed sooner rather than later. Thank you.

pshassett
Community Member

Agreed.  This has been a feature request for 5+ years...

What will it take Instructure?

nataliet
Community Member

This would be such a help to large discussions.   If this ever gets added, perhaps with it, add the ability to MINIMIZE threads in the discussion (ala Reddit).  I am both an instructor and a student and it would make life infinitely to have both these options in both regards. 

For example, I am a student in class with 30 others.  We often have to basically write essays in the discussion and respond with essays.  Trying scroll down through all of that, or just find anything, is almost impossible.

kwhopson
Community Member

Even these replies are sorted oldest to newest. Canvas really needs to catch up to now and listen to its users.

cameron_redsell
Community Participant

How is this still an issue? The discussion boards are a huge improvement over our previous system, but I still struggle to recommend their use to students. Between sorting from old to new, and the virtual inability to use them on mobile, the Canvas discussion boards are better, but still unusable for actual student conversation. How is this still a problem after 5 years of posts in this forum?

 

Cecilia_N
Community Member

Totally agree with this idea! Sorting of posts would be really helpful. The ability to minimize threads is also a strong request. 

RobbyL
Community Member

This would be a great help.

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