Create a Forum Activity

Forum activities are generally used to stimulate online discussions.

NOTE: All courses come with an Ask & Share Forum to use for class-wide announcements. This forum is part of the Course Structure Template and does not adhere to the following instructions. Please contact online@clackamas.edu for assistance if you need to create an Ask & Share Forum.

Enter your course and turn editing on.

Turn Editing On button is found in the top-right corner of a Moodle page you have permission to modify content for.

Scroll to the section where you want to add a forum.

Click the corresponding Add an activity or resource link.

Select Forum from the Activity Chooser.

NOTE: If you have been asked to replace an Open Forum, you will need to create a Moodle Forum Activity and manually copy the content from the Open Forum to the NEW! Moodle Forum. Open Forum will not appear in the Activity Chooser.

Set up the basics for your forum under the General section:

  • Set the Forum name
  • Enter a Description (generally includes posting instructions and the discussion prompt)
  • Determine whether or not to Display description on course page

Under the General section choose a Forum type from the drop-down menu.

You can choose one of the following five options:

  • Standard forum for general use (DEFAULT)
    Participants can start a new discussion at any time.
  • A single simple discussion
    The teacher posts a question and participants are only able to reply. NOTE: This forum type cannot be used with separate groups.
  • Each person posts one discussion
    Each participant can only start one discussion but can reply to many.
  • Q and A forum
    Each participant must first post before they can view any other post. (The delay is approximately 15 minutes.) For more information about this forum type, see the Q & A Forums article.
  • Standard forum displayed in a blog-like format
    Participants can start a new discussion at any time. The first post of each discussion is displayed so others can read it and then choose to respond by clicking the Discuss this topic link.

To change when participants can post to the forum expand the Availability section.

  • Due date will show in the calendar, but will not prevent participants from posting after this date.
  • Cut-off date will prevent participants from posting after this date.

Expand the Subscription and tracking area.

The Subscription mode determines if students will receive an email when posts are made to the forum.

  • Optional subscription (default): Participants can choose to subscribe.
  • Forced subscription: Participants are permanently subscribed.
  • Auto subscription: Participants are automatically subscribed but can choose to unsubscribe.
  • Subscription disabled: Participants are permanently unsubscribed.

NOTE: To find out more about subscriptions, see the Managing Forum Subscriptions article.

Ratings allows you to rate the posts as you read them in the forum. This also allows you to reply or add feedback to the posts as you grade.

NOTE: If you use ratings, do not also use whole forum grading. If you do use both grading types, you will have 2 different columns in the gradebook for the same forum.

  1. Expand the Ratings area.
  2. Set the Aggregate type to Sum of ratings.
  3. Set the Maximum grade to the total points you wish the forum to be worth.
  4. Set Grade category to the desired category.

Whole forum grading allows you to see all posts from a single student and to assign an individual grade. It is important to note that this method does not allow you to easily reply to the posts or to provide feedback to the student. However, you can use advanced grading methods, like rubrics, to provide standardized feedback when using Whole forum grading.

NOTE: If you use whole forum grading, do not also use ratings. If you do use both, you will have 2 different columns in the gradebook for the same forum.

  1. Expand the Whole Forum Grading area.
  2. Set the Grade to Point.
  3. Set the Maximum grade to the total points you wish the forum to be worth.
  4. Set Grade category to the desired category.

NOTE: If you would like to use a rubric to grade your forum, you can change the Grading method to Rubric.

No grade allows you to facilitate online discussions without assigning grades.

  1. Expand the Whole forum grading area.
  2. Set Grade to None.
  3. Expand the Ratings area.
  4. Set Aggregate type to No ratings.

Scroll to the bottom of the page.

Click the Save and display button to review the forum to ensure things look as expected.