Create a New Forum or Topic

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Create a forum

Note: To complete the procedures in this document, you must be assigned a role having the necessary permissions.

There are no default forums or topics in the Forums tool. No forums will appear in this area until someone with an appropriate role creates them. By default, participants (e.g., students) in a course site cannot create forums.

Note: When you create your forum, you'll need to add at least one topic so site participants can post messages. The forum will not be visible to participants unless a topic is added.

To create a new forum:

  1. In your site's menubar, click Forums.
  2. At the top, click New Forum.

  3. In the "Forum Title" field, type your forum's title. This is a required field, and is limited to 75 characters.
  4. In the "Short Description" field, you may provide a brief description (limited to 255 characters) that will be displayed along with the title in the Forums area.
  5. In the "Description" field, you may enter an in-depth description of your forum, and provide any associated information or materials.
  6. To add an attachment, under "Attachments", click Add Attachment. The file selector screen will open. You can attach a file from your local computer or from Materials, or specify the URL for a file on the web.
  7. To disable forum postings, under "Forum Posting", click the Yes radio button next to "Lock Topic (Disable forum postings)". The No radio button is selected by default, allowing site participants to post messages about your forum topic.
  8. To moderate forum postings, under "Forum Posting", click the Yes radio button next to "Moderate Topics in Forum". The No radio button is selected by default, allowing site participants to post messages without moderation.
  9. Under "Permissions", you can modify permission levels for participant roles. To do so, from the list under "Permissions", select a role for editing by clicking its name. Then, next to "Permission Level:", use the drop-down list to select from several predefined permission levels. Additionally, you can create custom permission levels by clicking to enable or disable the following functions:

    • New Forum: Create a new forum. You can modify this option only via Template Settings.
    • New Topic: Create a new topic. You can modify this option only via Template Settings or Forum Settings.
    • New Response: Create a new response to your topic.
    • Response to Response: Send responses to a topic response.
    • Post to Gradebook: Grade responses and add comments. Send grades and comments to Gradebook.
    • Change Settings: Change the topic settings.
    • Read: Read topic responses.
    • Mark as Read: Mark messages as read.
    • Moderate Postings: Moderate messages posted to forum.
    • Edit Postings: Use the radio buttons to indicate which postings participants with the permission level can edit (none, their own, or all postings).
    • Delete Postings: Use the radio buttons to indicate which postings participants with the permission level can delete (none, their own, or all postings).
  10. Next to "Gradebook Item", use the drop-down list to choose an item with which the forum should be associated.

    Note: To add an item to the Gradebook, see Add/Edit/Delete a Gradebook Assignment.

  11. When you're finished, click one of the following:
    • Save Draft: Save your forum as a draft. You'll return to the main Forums page. Forums saved as draft will not be available to site participants.
    • Save Settings & Add Topic: Save your changes and add a topic to your forum. You will need to add a topic so site members can post messages.
    • Cancel: Cancel your changes; you'll return to the main Forums page.

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Create a topic

Note: To complete the procedures in this document, you must be assigned a role having the necessary permissions.

Note: When you create your forum, you'll need to add at least one topic so site participants can post messages. The forum will not be visible to participants unless a topic is added.

To add a topic while you're creating your forum, first finish creating the forum, and then click Save Settings & Add Topic.

To add a topic later (i.e., after you've created and saved your forum), go to the main Forums page and find your forum's title. To its right, click New Topic.

Either of the above methods takes you to the Topics Settings screen. From there, you can finish adding your topic. Follow these steps:

  1. Next to "Topic Title", enter a title in the text box. This is a required field, and is limited to 75 characters.
  2. Next to "Short Description", you may provide a brief description (limited to 255 characters) that will display below the title in the Discussion Forums area.
  3. Next to "Description", you may enter an in-depth description of your forum, and provide any associated information or materials.
  4. To add an attachment, under "Attachments", click Add Attachment. The file selector screen will open. You can attach a file from your local computer or from Materials, or specify the URL for a file on the web.
  5. To disable topic postings, under "Topic Postings", click the Yes radio button next to "Lock Topic (Disable topic postings)". The No radio button is selected by default, allowing site participants to post messages about your forum topic.
  6. To moderate topic postings, under "Topic Posting", click the Yes radio button next to "Moderate Topic". The No radio button is selected by default, allowing site participants to post messages without moderation.