Supporting student-to-student interactions using discussions


In this lesson instructors will learn how to use the Canvas discussion tool for general course questions and dialogue and graded discussions related to course content.


Upon completion of this lesson, instructors will know how to:

  1. Create a Canvas discussion forum.
  2. Add a discussions link to the course menu

Resources & Activities

We encourage instructors to use the Discussions tool to foster student-to-student interactions.  Discussions can be created for a variety of topics and can be graded. Discussions can be created directly from the Discussions area and/or can be added to a module. Additionally, it may be helpful to include the “Discussions” link in the course menu so that students can easily access it.

During a prolonged campus closure, we encourage instructors to create a discussion forum for course questions.  This will centralize questions in a single location, allow students to answer peer questions, and will allow all student to benefit from all questions and answers that are posted.

Canvas Video Guides – Discussions Overview:

✓ Activity 1 – Create a discussion: To create a discussion, click the “Discussions” link in the course menu, then click the “+ Discussion” button. Enter the title and description. We recommend checking the option to allow threaded replies. Click the Save and Publish button.

✓ Activity 2 – Add discussions to the course menu:  To add “Discussions” to the course menu, click the “Settings” link, click the “Navigation” tab, locate the Discussions tool and click the corresponding three vertical dot menu and enable. Click the Save button.

Next Lesson

Learn how share and facilitate content >>