Forum for classroom discussions

piazza.com is a commerical, for-profit enterprise that offers a product for classroom discussion forums.

There is no monetary cost to using Piazza, although there is a “cost” in terms of having to manage “yet another tool”.

On the plus side, students seem to like having a Piazza forum in their classes, and many instructors have found that if the tool is used well, it has many benefits.

How to set up Piazza for a UCSB course

Setting up a course in Piazza is straightforward.

  1. Create an account at piazza.com
  2. Follow the instructions to set up a course.

The thing where you might need guidance if you are new is how to get the students into Piazza.

Two options:

One fun fact: once a student activates their account once, from then on, if an instructor adds them to a course with the same email, they get activated immediately. So, if you are teaching courses later in the curriculum, with high probability, a large fraction of your students will become active immediately after you upload their emails.

You can get a CSV file of all the students in your course from Egrades https://egrades.sa.ucsb.edu/.