Create an online question and answer space for students to ask questions and get help from each other.

Piazza is an online discussion aimed at supporting peer learning. The Piazza discussion forum is designed around a question and answer format that provides a space for students to ask questions about class materials and then respond to each other.

Having an online forum may also encourage students to post questions who may not feel comfortable raising their hand in a large class or going to office hours.

A wiki style editing mechanism allows students to collaborate on “best answer” responses to questions that are posed and encourages further discussion. Piazza provides a mechanism for instructors or TA’s to provide an authoritative answer or mark “good” answers to endorse them.

Reviewing the questions that students post can help you to surface areas of misunderstanding and address these either on the forums or in class.


Piazza offers features and functions that support community discussion and learning within a course.

  • Integrated with Canvas
  • Wiki style format
  • Tools available to help instructors moderate the discussions by organizing questions into folders, pinning the most significant questions and endorsing student answers that are correct.
  • Anonymous posting option
  • Online polls
  • LaTeX editor, highlighted syntax and code blocking

Arts ISIT Resources

  • There is an existing integration in place within Canvas that allows for a Piazza course space to be created in a way that protects the privacy of student data. To ensure that students are informed regarding the privacy of their information, you can provide them with the following language: In this course, you will be using Piazza, which is a tool to help facilitate discussions. When creating an account in the tool, you will be asked to provide personally identifying information. Please know that you are not required to consent to sharing this personal information with the tool, if you are uncomfortable doing so. If you choose not to provide consent, you may use a student.ubc.ca email address to create an account, or ask about other alternatives.
  • In order to sign up for and log into Piazza, students may be required to use a UBC-affiliated email address.
  • Instructors and TAs should refrain from answering questions immediately to encourage students to respond to each other. Endorse “good” student answers or provide an instructor response if the student answer isn’t correct or left unanswered for too long.
  • Actively work to integrate the online forum with the in class lessons by referencing student generated questions or answers for further discussion or clarification. Piazza questions can help to expose areas of common misunderstanding that can be used to design clicker questions or in class active learning exercises.

Additional Resources


If you would like further support on Piazza, please connect with us to learn more about the tool and its capabilities.

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