Six Glorious Reasons to Love Schoology's Redesigned Discussions
Recently, we took a brief look at just how valuable discussion can be as an instructional tool. After exploring various uses for the discussions on Schoology, we shared how we had planned on making them even better.
Well the moment of truth has arrived! Check out your new and improved Schoology discussions.
Increased Overall Scanability
The first thing you'll notice about our new discussions is the updated look and feel. What you may not notice immediately is how quickly you're able to scan for information.
Notice the Highlight User dropdown menu, formerly called "Filter by User," is sticky so it stays with you as you scroll down the page. It tells you how many posts each student has contributed. Scroll down in that menu a bit and you'll even see everyone who hasn't yet submitted a comment.
The new design makes it way easier to navigate through dense conversations. Even in yearlong discussions, you'll have no problem locating the information you want quickly.
You and your students can now create discussion posts at any time, whether you're at the top or the bottom of the discussion. How, you ask? The comment field is sticky so it stays at the top of your screen as you scroll.
The beauty of a simple enhancement like this is that it hits the very core of what discussions are all about. Building on the ideas that others have presented is the point of any discussion, right?
The ability to craft your post, continue reading, and directly reference other posts in a single motion makes participation more convenient and meaningful.
Quickly Identify Unread Posts
As the saying goes, "Orange is the new post" ... or something like that. Now, all the comments and replies posted since you last viewed the discussion will be tagged in orange. There's also an indicator of just how many unread posts there in the top bar.
This will help you catch up on the exciting new information without having to sift through what you've already learned.
Unread posts are indicated in the Highlight User menu as well. Also, the orange dots next to the grading button indicate which posts you have yet to grade.
Just think orange = new or unfinished.
Expand and Collapse Conversations
As if the new design weren't enough to enhance scanability, we've also added in some new expand and collapse icons. They're on the right side of your discussion's "tool bar" and will stick to the top of your screen as you scroll.
Click the collapse icon to truncate all the comments and hide their replies. This will help you quickly sift through tons of information. Once you find what you're looking for, click expand and bam!
Scroll to the Top
Find yourself at the bottom of a super long discussion and not looking forward to scrolling all the way up? Just click the Scroll to the Top icon! You'll zoom up there faster than you can blink.
Now you and your students can clear the formatting of any rich-text discussion post. This is especially useful for when you need to copy and paste text from various sources on the internet and you want it to drop the obnoxious or stochastic formatting that comes with it.
That concludes the tour of our redesigned discussions! Feel free to head over to our Help Center article to learn all the nitty gritty details, or just explore them on your own.
Whatever you do, please take a moment to let us know what you think below or via the Twitterverse (@Schoology). We always want to hear what you have to say.