How do I use Discussions Redesign as an observer?

If enabled by your student's school, you can use Discussions Redesign to view your student's discussions.


  • Your student's teacher may choose to hide the Discussions link in Course Navigation. If the Discussions link is not available, you can still access Discussions through other areas of Canvas.
  • If Discussions Redesign is not available in your student's course, it has not been enabled by your student's school.
  • This lesson shows how to use Discussions Redesign. If your discussions don’t look the same as what’s shown in this lesson, please view how to view the classic Discussions interface.

Open Discussions

Open Discussions

In Course Navigation, click the Discussions link.

Open Discussion

To view the details of a discussion in the Discussions Redesign interface, click the name of the discussion.

View Discussion

A discussion displayed in the Discussions Redesign interface includes three sections: the discussion toolbar [1], discussion topic [2], and discussion replies [3]. 

View Discussion Toolbar

View Discussion Toolbar

The discussion toolbar allows you to search the discussion and filter and sort replies.

To search for replies or specific authors, enter your terms in the search field [1].

To filter replies, click the Filter drop-down menu [2]. You can filter by all replies or unread replies.

To sort replies by newest or oldest, click the Sort button [3].

View Discussion Topic

The discussion topic section includes important information about the discussion, including the discussion title [1] and description [2].

You can also view the name of the author [3], user role labels for TAs and Teacher (Instructor) roles [4], the date and time the discussion was published [5], due date [6], an indicator for a graded discussion [7], the number of points possible [8], and number of replies [9].

Note: If the discussion is an anonymous discussion, student names and profile pictures do not display. Posts created by the instructor display the instructor's name and profile picture.

View Discussion Options
View Discussion Options

To view the Options menu for a discussion, click the Options icon [1].

To mark all replies as read, click the Mark All as Read link [2]. To view the discussion rubric, click the Show Rubric link [3].

Note: If the Show Rubric link does not display in the Options menu, a rubric has not been added to the discussion by your instructor.

View Discussion Replies

View Discussion Replies

Discussion replies display below the discussion topic. Learn how to view and sort discussion replies.