Depending on how your instructor set up your course, you access the discussion board from either the course menu or a course area, such as a content area, learning module, lesson plan, or folder.
The main Discussion Board page displays a list of available discussion forums. A forum is an area where users discuss a topic or a group of related topics. Click a forum title to view the messages. Forums containing unread posts appear in bold.
Within each forum, users can create multiple threads. A thread includes the initial post and any replies to it. When creating a forum, your instructor has the option of allowing or not allowing you to start threads. A moderated, graded forum used to evaluate student performance will be tightly controlled, and you cannot create threads. Other forums are designed for users to share opinions and thoughts on tangential or unrelated topics.
Course groups can have their own discussion boards that members create using the groups tool. Group discussion boards are available only to users who are members of the group. If a group discussion board is available, access it from the groups link in the course menu or in the My Groups area.
Viewing a Discussion Forum
When you access a discussion board forum, a list of threads appears with the following information:
- Date: Displays the date that the thread was created.
- Thread: Displays the name of the thread.
- Author: Displays the name of the user who created the thread.
- Status: Indicates whether the thread is published, locked, hidden, or a draft.
- Unread Posts: Displays the number of posts not yet accessed.
- Total Posts: Includes both read and unread posts.