A discussion forum is a container for discussion topics, where the actual discussion takes place. You cannot create a discussion topic without a forum to put the topic in. You can however put all discussion topics into one forum and label it "Discussions." This keeps the Discussion list compact for easier reading.
To create a discussion forum:
- Click the Collaboration menu on the navbar, then choose Discussions.
- Click on the New button, then choose New Forum.
- Give the forum a title, a description, and then choose which options you'd like to implement. (Options chosen at the forum level will apply to all the topics within the forum.) You do not have to set any options at this level.
- Allowing anonymous posts means that you will not know who posted any post marked as anonymous. Those posts will not be able to be graded.
- Requiring a moderator to approve all posts means that no post will posted to any thread until you have read and approved it.
- Requiring users to post a thread before they can read and reply to other threads in a topic means that they cannot read others' posts before they compose their own.
- Displaying the forum description in topics will display the description that you have entered for the forum (for example, instructions that would be applicable to all topics in the forum) in each topic in the forum.
- Availability determines when the forum will be visible. Visibility determines when students will be able to view the discussion forum. You can leave it visible at all times, hide it, or give a range of dates when it will be visible.
- Locking determines when students can post in a forum. You can leave it unlocked at all times, lock it, or give a range of dates when it will be unlocked.
- If a forum is unlocked but not visible, students will be unable to post in any topics within it because they cannot see them.NOTE: Remember that the dates you set here will apply to the topics in the forum. It is a recommended practice to leave the forum unrestricted and apply restrictions to the discussion topics within the forum. A topic cannot have an unlocked date that is later than the unlocked date set for the forum.
- If a forum is unlocked but not visible, students will be unable to post in any topics within it because they cannot see them.
- When you are done, click Save and Close.