Can you as instructor create a discussion forum, so that the students can add new threads, and both students and teachers can answer different questions?
Hello Jeppe - Ah, discussions...the subject of much, um, "discussion" in the Community, especially among those coming off of other learning management systems. If you do a search on that term in the Community, you will see that this topic has been (to use my favorite Harry S Truman quote) "cussed and discussed."
Yes, an instructor can create a discussion topic in Canvas. (They're called "topics," not "forums," by the way, in official Canvas parlance.) That's covered here: How do I create a discussion as an instructor? HOWEVER--and this is the big difference with other systems--whereas students can REPLY to a Discussion topic/prompt posted by an instructor, as well as reply to one another, of course, they have no ability to create their own, new subject line within that discussion. In fact, that was the topic of a long-dead feature request: Add Subject Lines to Discussion Posts . (I could have sworn it was more recent than that, in fact...maybe there's another one out there.) Instead, by default, Canvas allows students to also create their own Discussion topics, as covered here: How do I create a course discussion as a student? . I generally recommend faculty turn OFF that option (which is "on," by default) because that can get very, very messy in very little time. The location of that option is covered here: How do I allow students to start a new Discussion? But, the option is available if you want to use it.
The way Canvas addresses this is by the option to allow threaded discussions or not. Canvas calls the default (non-threaded) option a "focused" Discussion in their documentation--which I personally think is not a great term, but they didn't ask me--and the difference between the two is covered here: What is the difference between threaded and focused discussions?
I am attaching a PDF that you are welcome to look over that I give to my own faculty covering the difference between threaded and non-threaded discussions within a Discussion Topic. Perhaps that may help, as well. (Community members, please feel free to critique if I make any glaring errors on it!) Most of our faculty who want to check how students reply to other students prefer to use the "threaded" option.
Hope this helps a bit.
[EDIT - Re-attached PDF to correct an error on the first page.]
Thanks a lot.
Now I have made another solution and started a few different discussions like "General questions", "Techincal issues", "Subject XX discussions". So the students can choose the best discussion to ask their question or give their comment.
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