Linking a Brightspace Discussion Topic to Grades

You have to select to have a Discussion topic appear in your Grades in Brightspace.

Audience: Faculty, Researchers, Staff and Teaching Assistants

This KB Article References: Brightspace
This Information is Intended for: Faculty, Researchers, Staff, Teaching Assistants
Last Updated: March 22, 2023
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Please note, only Discussion Topics can be linked to Grades. Discussion Forums and Threads are unable to be linked. All questions that students will be replying to should be created in a Discussion Topic. Discussion Threads are used to reply to each topic which is why they cannot be linked. In addition, Discussion Threads are not able to be copied from course to course. 


You need to manually select to link a Brightspace Discussion Topic to Grades either by linking it to an existing or new grade item.

You can tell if a Discussion is linked to grades directly from Discussions. You can also tell if a Grade Item is linked to a Discussion from Grades.

Video Demo

Link a Discussion to a Grade Item

  1. In the Navbar across the top, select Discussions (or select Course Admin and then Discussions)
  2. Find the Discussion Forum (e.g., Unit 1) your Topic is associated with, below this, go to the right of the Discussion Topic (e.g., Week 1), click theand select Edit Topic
  3. There are several options across the top. Select Assessment
  4. For Score Out Of, enter the maximum points
  5. For Grade Item, if the grade item you want to connect to already exists, click the drop down and select it
  6. Otherwise, select [New Grade Item]
    1. Enter a name for the grade item. Tip: Use the same or similar name as the Discussion Topic
    2. Select a Grade Category (required if you use a weighted grade book)
    3. Scroll down and enter the Maximum points (the same you entered in step 4 above) and weight, as required
    4. Select additional grade options as desired (e.g., Can exceed max, Bonus, Hide from Users, Availability dates)
    5. Click Save
  7. Optionally, select the box to Allow assessment of individual posts, and then select how
  8. Adjust other grade settings as desired and select Save (or Save and Close)

How To Know if a Discussion is Linked to Grades (from the Discussion tool)

  1. Back in the list of Discussions, you'll know a Discussion Topic is linked to Grades when it shows a ribbon next to the name 
    Tip: If a Discussion was linked and then unlinked from a Grade Item BUT still has a Score Out Of value in the Discussion Topic's Assessment section, it will still show the Includes assessment ribbon icon

How To Know if a Grade Item is Linked to/Associated with a Discussion (from Grades)

  1. In Grades, you'll know a grade item is linked to a Discussion from the Association column: Any grade item linked to an assignment will show Discussions ? in the Association column. Click the to see which Discussion the grade item is linked to:

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