Discussions allow for interactive communication between two or more people.

Discussions can also be created as an assignment for grading purposes (and seamlessly integrated with the Canvas Gradebook). Discussions can also be created within student groups.

Canvas offers focused and threaded discussion formats. Focused discussions only allow for two levels of nesting, the original post, and subsequent replies. Threaded discussions allow for infinite levels of nesting. Focused discussions are relatively short-lived interactions, while threaded discussions allow replies within replies and may last for a longer period of time.

To learn more, read the Discussions section of the Canvas Instructor Guide. Topics include:

  • Create and edit a discussion
  • Delay a posting a discussion
  • Move or reorder a discussion
  • Reply to a discussion
  • Grading a discussion
  • Pin a discussion

To learn tips for effectively managing discussions read the post, Managing Discussions Effectively.


The mission of the Rothwell Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence is to empower faculty members in their pursuit of professional growth through diverse offerings for the universal goal of student success.

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