Participate in Discussions with Your Classmates
How do I use Discussions?
As some courses may not meet in a live session to discuss topics and share your insights, your instructor may use the Discussions tool to create a space for focused or open-ended conversations related to your course.
Before posting or replying to threads, make sure to first read your instructor's guidelines and/or rubrics for what their expectations and success criteria are (e.g. minimum word length peer responses, etc.)
How to Post & Respond to Discussions
This video was prepared by PCC Librarian, Chuck Becker.
Resources for Enhanced Discussions
TIP #1: Anyone in the class can view your posts and responses. Your instructor may also respond to you individually or to the entire class. Make sure you go back to the discussion post after it closes to read through all of the responses to your original post.
TIP #2: Do not wait until the due date to post and respond to others. Make sure you know when the discussion will become available and submit your post as soon as possible!
Discussions Frequently Asking Questions
Why are discussion posts not formatting correctly when I copy content over from another source?
If discussion posts are not formatting correctly when using copy and paste, ensure you have enabled and are using the proper tools for copying from another source.
Important: When copying and pasting formatted content from other sources, the HTML Editor in the Discussions tool contains some limitations. For example, if you copy content from a document with APA formatting and paste it into a discussion thread, the formatting is not preserved.
Ensure that the HTML Editor is enabled by navigating to the My Settings widget and selecting Account Settings.
In the HTML Editor Settings section, clear the Turn off rich text editor and view source check box.
Click Save and Close.
Copy the content into the HTML Editor by copying the content you want to post in the discussion into a Microsoft® Word document first.
Make any formatting changes in the document.
Select and copy the content from the document.
In the HTML Editor, click Paste from Word.
Paste the content into the new pop-up window that appears.
Click Insert. The content should appear with correct formatting.
Why can't I delete my discussion posts?
Students do not have permission to delete discussion posts. Contact the instructor if you need a post deleted as instructors have permission to delete discussion posts.
As a workaround, you can edit the discussion post and remove the content. Note that your changes will be recorded. Also, it is important to verify with your instructor in case there is a specific method they want you to use for editing discussion posts.
The discussion topic is missing, what do I do?
If you can’t locate a discussion topic or it’s missing, the instructor has either hidden it or had set a start and end date for discussion visibility that has now passed. Contact your instructor for further options in accessing the discussion topic.
Why can't I copy/paste?
If you are finding it difficult to copy or paste in the HTML Editor, the browser you are using may not be supported.
Highlight the text you want to copy.
Select and hold Ctrl + C on your keyboard.
Select the place you want to paste the text.
Select and hold Ctrl + V on your keyboard.
Why is the discussion's "Post" button missing?
In Discussions, clicking Reply to a discussion thread opens a new window but the page does not load fully.
The page does not allow the user to post a reply to the discussion thread.
The button to submit a post is not available.
Check whether the issue occurs only in one specific browser or in all browsers. For example, try to reproduce the issue you are having in another browser (i.e. if you are using Chrome, try in Firefox or Microsoft Edge).
If you can't reproduce the issue in another browser (i.e. the website loads fully in the other browsers):
On the page with the issue, press CTRL+Shift+R. This refreshes the page but allows you to get the source webpage instead of any conflicting cached page. If the page loads fully, the issue is resolved. If it does not load fully, go to step 2.
Clear the browser's web cache, cookies, and browsing history. Important: Performing this action does the following:
Web addresses you've visited, listed on the History page, will be removed.
Any IP addresses pre-fetched from pages you've visited will be removed.
If you opted to have sites remember your username and password (or any other auto-fill information), they will be cleared from your browser's memory when you clear cache and cookies, and you'll have to sign in again.
Websites might load a little slower because all of the images and content must be re-downloaded.
Restart the browser.
If you can reproduce the issue in another browser:
Close and re-open all programs. They may be using up a lot of memory which can cause the browsers to behave slowly or not load completely.
Restart the computer.
Temporarily disable any new Antivirus/Firewall that may have been recently installed/upgraded.
Check for malware. If you are seeing any suspicious pop-ups, unwanted tool bars, redirects or strange Google search results, you may have inadvertently installed malware. If you suspect this is the case, download anti-malware software.
Temporarily disable Add-Ons in the browser.
Ensure that pop-ups are allowed.
If you are still experiencing issues after this, you will need to run a Fiddler trace. This allows Support to debug the traffic between networks and potentially identify what could be blocking the pages from loading.
To run a Fiddler trace: Download Fiddler, Launch Fiddler, Select Tools > Fiddler Options and ensure the following options are checked: Capture HTTPS Connects, Decrypt HTTPS traffic. Ignore Server Certificate error. NOTE: In the bottom left corner of the page, you can toggle Fiddler on and off by clicking Capturing. If nothing displays, then this means it won't capture any data.
Reproduce the issue. For example, log in to Brightspace Learning Environment and attempt to send an e-mail, upload to Assignments, or submit to the discussion board. Note: You will be able to see the Fiddler report reporting data while you are reproducing the issue.
Once the page times out, go to the Fiddler window. Select Edit > Select All. Select File > Save > Session(s) > in ArchiveZip. Important: While Fiddler is running, ALL browser activity is recorded, including page content. Ensure that you do not to view any confidential information that you do not want to be viewed by anyone examining the trace.
Attach the file when you submit a ticket to the D2L Help Desk.
Why can't I access a discussion post?
If you are receiving a “Not Authorized” or “Internal Error” message when attempting to access a discussion post, the discussion may no longer be available and is hidden or the release conditions set on a discussion are not permitting access to the discussion.
Ensure that you are completing content modules in the order of activities as set forth by your instructor since there may be release conditions set around accessing a discussion topic. As well, verify that the due date for viewing the discussion has not passed. If it has, the discussion is not available anymore and has been hidden. Contact your instructor for any issues related to past due discussions.
If the due date has not passed and you are receiving an error message, contact the D2L Help Desk for help with this issue.
What's the difference between a discussion thread and topic?
A forum is equivalent to a folder which contains a collection of one or more discussion topics. You post to discussion topics and each post within the topic is called a thread.
Forum: Classroom Introductions
Topic 1: Where were you born?
Thread 1: Alice: I was born in Germany
Reply to Thread:
Bob: I was born in Germany too! Where in Germany were you born, Alice?
Thread 2: Chuck: I am from California, USA.
Topic 2: Why are you interested in this course?
Thread 1: Dan: I love learning about science!
Why am I unable to post in a discussion I have access to?
If you can access a discussion but can’t post in it, the discussion’s permissions are set so that the discussion is visible for viewing but is locked and not available for posting. Check to see when the discussion was due. If the due date has passed, contact the course instructor for further information.
If the discussion’s due date has not passed, or if the discussion does not have a due date, contact the D2L Help Desk for help with this issue. If the Post button is missing, click here.
How do I add a picture to a discussion post?
You can add a picture to your post through the Insert Image function:
From the Course Homepage, go to Discussions and find the discussion topic you want to post in.
From the editor screen, click Insert Image.
Select the source of the picture (e.g. your computer, or an internet link).
Click Upload to select the picture you want to add. Click Add.
Once the post is ready, click Post.
Tip: You can also add a picture and other media types to a discussion post by clicking Insert Stuff.
Why is the Equation Editor not working properly?
If the Equation Editor is not working properly, your computer is missing the required Java plugin. If you need further assistance, contact the Help Desk.
How do I see rubric feedback for a discussion?
From the navbar, click your username and then click Progress.
From the selection panel, click Discussions.
In the Discussions Progress section, click the Topics link for the discussion you want to see rubric feedback for.
Click the Details link.
Click the Rubrics link you want to view results for.
There is no restriction on the discussion topic but I receive an error message when trying to access it
This issue can be caused when files with illegal characters in the file name are uploaded to a discussion topic. There is a workaround available.
In the Discussions tool, click Settings.
In the Default view section under Personal Settings, check if you are currently using Reading View. If so, select Grid View. Click Save.
Return to the list of discussion topics and see if the error can be reproduced. If you are still unable to access the topic contact the Help Desk for further investigation.