Discussion Boards

The Discussion Board tool can be used to create forums, threads and posts.

The Discussion Board tool includes features like:

  • All posts on one page - all of the posts in a thread are now visible at the same time on one page.

  • Role highlighting - posts made by forum managers and moderators now contain the user’s course role and forum role.

  • Inline replies - when replying to a post, the content editor used to write a response appears on the same page, in the context of the discussion.

  • Post First Setting - instructors can use a new forum setting to require students to post to a forum before they can see other students’ posts.

Click Below for Videos and Tutorials on Discussion Boards (opens in a new window)

Create a Discussion Board
Create a Forum
Blackboard Help Guides
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Frequently asked questions

How do I create a Discussion Forum? (Original Course)


To begin creating a Discussion Forum go to Control Panel > Course Tools > Discussion Board > Create Forum Select the discussion board where you want to create a forum, and the Create Forum option appears. Forum settings are grouped into related areas on the page. Settings that aren't available based on the current selections are grayed-out or have strikethrough text. Type a name and optional instructions or a description. On the main discussion board page, the description appears after the forum name. The forum description appears when students create a thread and when they encounter a thread with the post first setting. Forum descriptions are often used as prompts and are visible where students post. In the Forum Availability section, select Yes. Select the Display After and Display Until check boxes to enable the date and time selections. Display restrictions affect when the forum appears. Select the Forum Settings based on your specific needs.

  • Viewing Threads/Replies: To promote originality, creativity, and a variety of responses, you can choose Participants must create a thread to view other threads in this forum, which is the post first setting. Students must respond before they can read their classmates' posts. In Standard View, everyone can see all previously created threads in the forum.
  • Grade: You can create a graded forum or thread and a column is created automatically in the Grade Center.
  • Select Grade Discussion Forum and type a point value to evaluate participants on performance throughout a forum.
  • Select Grade Threads to evaluate participants on performance in each thread.
  • If you're grading posts and want to retain the posts as they were at the time of grading, clear the check box for Allow Author to Edit Own Published Posts in the Create and Edit settings.
  • If you enable grading for the forum, select the check box for Show participants in needs grading status and select the number of posts from the menu. Applying this setting displays the Needs Grading icon in the Grade Center and places the posts in the queue on the Needs Grading page after students make the specified number of posts. If you select a grading option and do NOT select the check box, the Needs Grading icon doesn't appear in the Grade Center and posts don't appear on the Needs Grading page.
  • Due Date and Rubric: When you enable grading, you can provide a Due Date. Due dates are used to organize and assign gradable items to grading periods in the Grade Center. Graded posts made after the due date are marked LATE on the Grade Details page in the Grade Center and on the Needs Grading page.
  • Point to Add Rubric to access the menu and associate a rubric to use for grading.
  • Subscribe: You can allow students to subscribe to this forum or threads within the forum. Students who subscribe to a forum or thread receive notifications when activity occurs.
  • Create and Edit: Choose the student's ability to create and edit within the forum.
  • Additional Options: Enable students to tag or rate posts within the forum.
Select Submit.




How do I create a Discussion Thread? (Original Course)


On the Discussion Board page, open a forum and select Create Thread. The Create Thread page opens and the forum description is shown. This description is also shown when a user encounters a thread with the post first setting. Forum descriptions are often used as prompts for discussion, so they are now visible where users are posting. Type a subject, and instructions, a description, or a question. You can attach a file in the Attachments section. Select Browse My Computer to upload a file from your computer. You can also upload a file from the course's storage repository. If your course uses Course Files, select Browse Course. If your institution has access to the content management features, select Browse Content Collection. If you chose to grade threads when you created the forum, you decide on a thread-by-thread basis whether to grade a thread and you'll see additional settings. In the Grading section, select the check box for Grade Thread and type Points possible. Select the check box for Show participants in needs grading status and select the number of posts from the menu. This setting displays the Needs Grading icon in the Grade Center and places the posts in the queue on the Needs Grading page after users make the specified number of posts. If you select a grading option and do NOT select the check box, the Needs Grading icon doesn't appear in the Grade Center and posts don't appear on the Needs Grading page. You can also associate a rubric to use for grading by pointing to Add Rubric. Select Save Draft to store a draft of the post or Submit to create the thread.




How do I respond to a Discussion? (Original Course)


Open a thread inside a forum. On the thread's page, you can view the text of the post and information, such as the author and posted date. All replies appear on the same page with the parent post. Point to the post to see options such as Reply, Quote, Edit, Delete, and Email Author. The Quote option includes the post's text as part of your reply. Select Reply. If you want to view only the unread posts in the thread, select Unread. The unread posts appear on one page. The page expands below the post you're responding to. You can view the post and access the editor. If needed, edit the Subject. Type your reply in the Message box. You can also attach a file. After the Message box, you can attach a file. Select Browse My Computer to upload a file from your computer. You can also upload a file from the course's file repository: Course Files or the Content Collection. Select Save Draft to store a draft of the post or select Submit to publish your reply.




Can I grade a Discussion? (Original Course)


You can grade a Discussion as long as it has been turned on. To turn on grading when creating a Forum Select Grade Discussion Forum and type a point value to evaluate participants on performance throughout a forum. If you want to evaluate participants on performance in each thread, select Grade Threads. Optionally, select the check box for Show participants in needs grading status and select the number of posts required to show participants in needs grading status. This setting shows the Needs Grading icon in the Grade Center after each student makes the specified number of posts. The posts are also placed in the queue on the Needs Grading page. If you select a grading option and do NOT select the check box, the Needs Grading icon doesn't appear in the Grade Center and posts don't appear on the Needs Grading page. In the Grade Center, students' attempts will appear with the In Progress icon when they post. Optionally, access the Add Rubric menu to choose a rubric.





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