Forums, Topics, and Conversations
Within the Forums tool, there is an organizational hierarchy which can be broken down into the following components:
This is the highest level of organization within this tool. Often, we recommend that each course have two forums – one for graded/required discussions, and another for optional discussions.
- To create a new forum, select ‘New Forum’.
- Add your forum title (ex: “Required Discussions”)
- Select ‘Save’ or ‘Save Settings & Add Topic’ to begin adding discussion threads to this new forum.
Creating a Topic within the Forum will provide your participants with space to respond to your discussion prompt.
- To create a new Topic, select ‘New Topic’ next to the Forum title.
- Enter a Topic title, such as ‘Chapter 1 Discussion.’
- You may enter a short description to briefly summarize the theme of the discussion.
- For a detailed discussion prompt, use the longer description box.
- You may add attachments if necessary to support your discussion prompt.
- If desired, you may specify open and close dates to limit this discussion to a specific window of time.
- To assign a grade to this discussion, select an already-created gradebook item from the dropdown menu ‘Gradebook Item.’
- Save your topic or select ‘Save Settings & Add Topic’ to continue adding discussions.
Your participants will respond to your discussion prompt by creating Conversations.
- Course participants will be able to respond within an open Topic by selecting ‘Start a New Conversation.’
- To respond to an already-posted conversation, participants will select ‘Reply.’
- To respond to the initial post within a conversation thread, participants can select ‘Reply to Initial Message.’
If you have any questions at all about using the Forums tool in Sakai, please contact the Department of Instructional Design & Technology.