Platform update: Improved discussions features!

We are pleased to announce a new and improved discussions feature on the SEND Network, allowing you to ask and respond to questions and ideas from other members more easily.
Platform update: Improved discussions features!

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Platform update: New discussions feature

We are pleased to announce a new and improved discussions feature on the SEND Network, allowing you to ask and respond to questions and ideas from other members more easily. 

Here's what's new:

  • Streamlined access: Easily find all active discussions on the SEND Network, including the most popular discussions at a given time ('trending') and all discussions which you have either started or contributed to: click the 'Discussions' tab on the side navigation bar to access this overview 
  • Express support: Show appreciation for other members' contributions by now being able to like contributions
  • Threaded responses: Respond to individual replies in a more organised way - so you can add your reply underneath the most relevant part of an ongoing discussion
  • Flexibility: Edit or delete your discussions/contributions easily, so what you publish doesn't have to be permanent
  • Easy conversation starters: Start a conversation from within a room (e.g. Introduce yourself) or start a conversation from the All discussions page, where you can allocate a space for your discussion to sit

How to use the discussions functionality: 

Firstly, it is important that you set up your email notification preferences to reflect the level of communication you would like to receive. You will currently receive an email notification for all new discussions which are begun on the community. This is the best way to stay notified on all new activity/contributions, even from members you may not know. However, you can easily amend your preferences by clicking here. Choose from the following two alternatives:

  1. Relevant discussion notifications - you will be emailed when someone you follow starts a discussion or when someone contributes to a discussion you have been part of. 
  2. My discussion notifications - only receive emails when members reply to a discussion you have started or which you have contributed to

How to create a new discussion: 

You can either start a discussion from within a specific room (e.g. Introduce yourself, Discussion & collaboration etc.) or directly from the All discussions page (found in the side navigation bar and on the homepage). 

If you start a discussion from a room, you will not be asked to choose where you want the discussion to be posted. If you create a discussion from the Discussions overview page, this will be the first option in a dropdown list. For all general discussions, choose 'Discussion room'. 

You can then choose from a variety of discussion types, based on your contribution. These are: 

  1. Introduction - introduce yourself to other SEND Network members when you join the community
  2. General discussion (on a given topic) - this is your default discussion mode for all broad questions
  3. Quick Q&A - for other members to give you a quick answer to a question you may have 
  4. Announcement - share news about an upcoming event/webinar, policy update, research study etc. 

You will then be required to give your discussion a title and fill in the content. Don't worry - once posted, you can go in and edit your discussion at any point. 

How to find your own discussions: 

On the Discussions overview page, there are three tabs: 

  • All discussions - this showcases all active discussions from across the SEND Network in chronological order
  • Trending - this showcases discussions which are most popular at the moment
  • My discussions - this is where you will find all discussions you have started or contributed to

How to contribute to ongoing discussions:

Engaging with discussions is simple - you can now like and reply to threads underneath a discussion. Click on the discussion you're interested in and you'll see a heart in the bottom right hand corner if you want to show your support/interest in this thread. 

To reply to the main question, simply type in the box which says 'What are your thoughts?' or scroll to the relevant response and click 'Reply' underneath that particular response. The person you are replying to will be notified. 

We hope you find the new discussion functionality easy to use and are able to connect and collaborate with peers across the SEND Network more easily. If you have any feedback or questions about the discussion functionality, please do get in touch with the team here.

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