Topics in this article include:

Discussion Board Overview

Create a Discussion Forum

Create a Discussion Thread

Reply to Discussion Threads
Search and Collect Discussions

Discussion Board Overview

The Discussion Board serves to replace or augment classroom discussions in a digital format. Discussions can serve as an online meeting place, a medium for collaboration, or a way to demonstrate the understanding or application of course material. A Discussion Board forum is an area where participants discuss a topic. Within each forum are threads (or discussion topics), which contains each participant's post and replies to the post. 

Create a Discussion Forum

The Discussion Board Forum serves as a virtual space for your class discussion. Each Forum is a unique topic, or discussion prompt. Within the forum, each participant will create threads, which represent a new point in the conversation.

To create a discussion forum in your course click on Discussion Board in the course menu. If you do not have a link to the Discussion Board, see Adding a Tool Link for instructions.


At the top of the page click Create Forum



Enter a Name for your discussion. Enter your discussion prompt and instructions for the Description using the text/content editor. For more information on using the Text/Content editor, see Using the myLesley Text/Content Editor.

Once you have finished, click Submit at the bottom of the page to save your changes.

Optional Settings

While many faculty use the default settings, there are additional options you may wish to modify. You may modify your forum settings or stick with the default settings.

Forum Availability

Select Yes to make your Forum available. You may also set date and time restrictions to make the forum after a certain date or during a certain date range. See Managing Release Dates (Setting Date/Time Restrictions) for more information.

Viewing Threads/Replies

You may choose how your students view threads and replies.

  • Standard View allows your students to see all the other posts of the discussion forum prior to posting themselves.
  • Participants must create a thread in order to view other threads in this forum requires students to create a thread before being able to view others posts in the discussion. 


This option will create a grade column in the Grade Center. You can view all of a student’s posts at once and apply a grade. You may choose to grade by entire forum discussion or by each thread.


Students and faculty can receive notifications of discussion activity. 

This feature does not subscribe course members to the forum. It provides the option for each discussion participant to subscribe if they wish by clicking Subscribe at the top of the discussion forum. 

Create and Edit

These options allow you to provide more or less control over how your students may post. It is recommended to allow students to create new threads, attach files and respond with a quote from another post. You may also wish to allow students to post anonymously or edit/delete their posts. Check Force Moderation of Posts to preview them prior to allowing other students to view and respond to them. 

Additional Options

You may also choose to allow post tagging or allow members to rate posts.

Allow Post Tagging will allow you to assign keywords to posts which you and your students can then use to search discussion forums. 

Note: Students cannot tag posts.

To tag posts, check the threads that contain posts you wish to tag. Click Collect

Check the posts you wish to tag or click Select All to tag them all. Enter keywords for Tag Text and click 


Allow Members to Rate Posts allows discussion participants to rate posts with one to five stars.

For more information see Create Forums.

Create a Discussion Thread

In the Discussion Board each thread serves as a different point in the conversation. Participants may create new threads for different ideas or topics within the conversation.

To create a thread, click on Discussion Board in the course menu.

This will bring you to the Discussion Board area of the course. Select a Discussion Forum to join the conversation.

You will be brought into the Discussion Forum. Click a thread to read a participant's post or select Create Thread at the top of the page to create a new thread.

Give your message a name and use the text/content editor to add text, links, images, video, etc. See Using the myLesley Text/Content Editor for more information.

Click Submit to post your thread.

For more information see Create Threads.

Reply to Discussion Threads

Once someone has created an initial thread in the Discussion Board, you may reply to the post, thus creating a conversation around the post. 

Select a Discussion Thread and click to open.

Read the post and click Reply beneath the post.

Reply to the post using the the text/content editor to add text, links, images, video, etc. See Using the myLesley Text/Content Editor for more information.

Click Submit to post your reply.

See Reply to Discussion Posts for more information on replying to Discussion posts, including best practices.

Manage Discussions

Instructors have the ability to manage the Discussion Board content, including the ability to edit a forum, edit a thread, delete forums and threads, reorder forums, and more. See Manage Discussions for more information.

Search and Collect Discussions

In the Discussion Board you can search for specific text or collect your posts for easier reading. See Search and Collect Discussions in myLesley for more information