Asynchronous discussions

Also known as: online group discussions, message boards, discussion forums

Asynchronous discussions allow students to participate in group discussions at different times and at their convenience. They:

  • enable educators to set self-paced learning tasks for students to complete over an allocated time period
  • allow students to collaborate on self-paced tasks
  • encourage all students to engage in discussion and allow time for reflection and thoughtful participation.

Asynchronous discussion

ICT templates

Learning activity templates

Google templates 

Ensure you are logged into your Google account before accessing these templates.

Microsoft templates

Ensure you are logged into your Microsoft account before accessing these templates. To edit Microsoft templates, go to:
File > Download a Copy.

How to use with ICT

  • Google Classroom and Microsoft Teams allow students to participate in a range of asynchronous discussion activities through forums and chat functionality.

External resources

Find out more resources
Title Link Description
Online tools that support asynchronous learning by Deepa Katambur Asynchronous learning  A summary of five effective online asynchronous learning tools.
Voxer: I get it now by Peter deWitt Voxer: I get it now!!! A blog post that discusses the advantages of asynchronous discussion using the Voxer app. The advantages are common to all asynchronous discussion tools.
Education balancing act by Jennifer Ritter Asynchronous, synchronous, and blended learning Explores the advantages and disadvantages of asynchronous, synchronous and blended eLearning.
Definition, benefits, and example activities by Elizabeth Trach  Asynchronous learning: Definition, benefits, and example activities Explores the key features of asynchronous learning and offers practical information for a variety of implementations.
Tools for online asynchronous learning by Joanne Lau Tools for asynchronous learning Comprehensive information on ways to transition face-to-face classes to asynchronous learning.
Synchronous and asynchronous learning by Maria Aragon Synchronous and asynchronous learning 17 slides covering asynchronous learning elements useful to educators.
Active teaching lab recap: Asynchronous discussions in Canvas by Karin Spader Asynchronous discussions in Canvas The key takeaways from professional learning on how to design more productive asynchronous class discussions in Canvas.


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Personalised learning

Students with disability

When planning to use technology in the classroom it is important to consider the diversity of your learners. Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework to guide the design of learning environments that are accessible and effective for all. For UDL guidelines, information and additional materials, visit the CAST website.

Many students require technology as an adjustment to support their access to learning. Adjustments (NESA) are actions taken that enable a student with disability and additional learning needs to access syllabus outcomes and content on the same basis as their peers. Enrol in the Personalised learning with technology online course to help you make more informed decisions regarding technology.


To support your understanding of inclusive curriculum planning, enrol in the microlearning course: Curriculum planning for every student in every classroom. This online series is designed to equip K-12 teachers to effectively identify and meet the diverse learning needs of all their students


High potential and gifted learning and support

When planning to use technology in the classroom it is important to consider the full range of abilities of all learners. High potential and gifted learners may require additional adjustments and deliberate talent development.  These strategies include differentiation, grouping, enrichment and advanced learning pathways so students can be engaged, grow and achieve their personal best.


Assessing and identifying high potential and gifted learners will help teachers decide which students may benefit from extension and additional challenge. Effective strategies and contributors to achievement for high potential and gifted learners helps teachers to identify and target areas for growth and improvement. School leaders can access the Evaluation and Planning Tool to support strategic improvement planning.


Recognising the diversity of high potential and gifted students represented in classrooms across 4 domains of potential can be explored further by accessing illustrations of practice.


For further support and advice about how to tailor learning for high potential and gifted students from all backgrounds, visit the High Potential and Gifted Education web section, High Potential and Gifted Education Policy or attend one of the professional learning courses on offer.