How do I start a discussion?

This article provides a step by step guide to adding, editing and publishing a discussion on the website.

The ‘Add new discussion’ link

The screenshot below highlights the ‘Add new discussion’ link on a desktop device

Add new discussion link on a desktop device

The screenshot below highlights the ‘Add new discussion’ link on a mobile or tablet device

Add new discussion link on a mobile or tablet device

The discussion editing screen

The screenshot below highlights the main parts of the discussion editing screen

The discussion editing screen


This is the title of the discussion e.g. ‘Thoughts on the General Practice Forward View’.


The Permalink appears below the title and indicated the URL for your profile. The URL is authomatically generated when the discussion is saved for the first time e.g. ‎

Add Media button

The Add Media buton allows you to insert files or images that are stored in the media library or upload files or images from your computer into the media library which can then be inserted into the Description field.

WYSIWYG toolbar

The WYSIWYG toolbar includes various buttons to help you format the information you enter into the description window. If you have used wordprocessing software such as Microsoft Word on a PC or Pages on a Mac the buttons on this toolbar will be familiar to you. The WYSIWYG toolbar is only visible on the Visual tab. It is replaced by the Quicktag toolbar on the Text tab, see Visual / Text tab below.

Visual / Text tabs

When writing your post, you have the option of using the Visual or Text mode of the editor. The visual mode lets you see your post as is, while the Text mode shows you the code and replaces the WYSIWYG editor buttons with quicktags. These quicktags are explained as follows.

  • b – <strong></strong> HTML tag for strong emphasis of text (i.e. bold).
  • i – <em></em> HTML tag for emphasis of text (i.e. italicize).
  • b-quote – <blockquote></blockquote> HTML tag to distinguish quoted or cited text.
  • del – <del></del> HTML tag to label text considered deleted from a post. Most browsers display as striked through text. (Assigns datetime attribute with offset from GMT (UTC))
  • link – <a href=””></a> HTML tag to create a hyperlink.
  • ins – <ins></ins> HTML tag to label text considered inserted into a post. Most browsers display as underlined text. (Assigns datetime attribute with offset from GMT (UTC))
  • ul – <ul></ul> HTML tag will insert an unordered list, or wrap the selected text in same. An unordered list will typically be a bulleted list of items.
  • ol – <ol></ol> HTML tag will insert a numbered list, or wrap the selected text in same. Each item in an ordered list are typically numbered.
  • li – <li></li> HTML tag will insert or make the selected text a list item. Used in conjunction with the ul or ol tag.
  • code – <code></code> HTML tag for preformatted styling of text. Generally sets text in a monospaced font, such as Courier.
  • more – <!–more–> a tag that breaks a post into “teaser” and content sections. This tag is not used within the website and can be ignored.
  • lookup – Opens a JavaScript dialogue box that prompts for a word to search for through the online dictionary at You can use this to check spelling on individual words.
  • Close Tags – Closes any open HTML tags left open–but pay attention to the closing tags. Try to make sure the tags enclose what you want, and in the proper way.


Enter your discussion points providing as much detail as you can.

Use the description field to include links, images and any information you want to display as part of your discussion.

The description is visible when the discussion is being viewed as a page in it’s own right. There is no word limit on the length of your decription. You can use either the Visual or the Text (HTML) view to compose your discussion.


Enter a short summary about your discussion. One or two sentences will usually suffice.

The excerpt is visible when the discussion is being viewed as part of a collection, for example on a topic page.

discussion taxonomies

Improvement topics and tools

Improvement topics

Please select the improvement topic areas that are relevant to the discussion. For example, if your discussion is about work to improve patient experience of health care you might choose the topic ‘Patient involvement’.

The topics are used to organise all of the content about ‘Resource’, ‘discussions’, ‘Members’ and ‘Discussions’ that appears on the website. They appear in the main navigation menu of the website. If you select the topic ‘Patient involvement’, information about your discussion will appear on the ‘discussions’ section of the ‘Patient involvement’ topic page on the website.

Improvement tools

Please select the improvement tools that are relevant to the discussion. For example, if your discussion concerns a clinical audit you would select ‘clinical audit’ as the improvement tool.

Clinical area

Please select the clinical area/s that are relevant to your discussion. For example, if your discussion is about work to improve the early diagnosis of diabetes you would select ‘diabetes’ as the clinical area.

Publish module

The Publish module can be expanded, or collapsed, by clicking on the module title bar.

Publish module

Publish module expanded

Preview button

The Preview button allows you to view your discussion before officially publishing it.

Save Draft button

The Save Draft button allows you to save your discussion as a draft for publishing at a later stage.


The Publish module contains buttons that control the editorial states of your discussion. The main states are Published, Pending Review, and Draft.

  • Published status means your discussion has been published on the website for all to see.
  • Pending Review means the discussion draft is waiting for review by an editor prior to publication.
  • Draft means your discussion has not been published and remains a draft for you.

If you select a specific publish status and click the update discussion or Publish button, that status is applied to your profile.


This determines how your discussion appears to the world. Public discussions will be visible to all website members once published. Password Protected discussions are published to all, but visitors must know the password to view the discussion content. Private discussions are visible only to you.


The revisions option explains how many revisions of your discussion exist. You can browse previous revisions and restore them where appropriate.

Published date

The Published date option explains when your discussion was published. If you are publishing your discussion for the first time the current date and time are assigned as the Published date.

To schedule your discussion for publication on a future time or date, click “Edit” in the Publish area next to the words “Publish immediately”. You can also change the publish date to a date in the past to back-date the publication of your discussion. Change the settings to the desired time and date. You must also hit the “Publish” button when you have completed your discussion to publish at the desired time and date.


The Publish button publishes your discussion on the website. You can edit the time when your organisation is published by clicking the Edit link above the Publish button and specifying the time you want your discussion to be published. By default, at the time the discussion is first auto-saved, that will be the date and time set for your discussion.

Discussion archives

The screenshot below show the ‘discussion archives’ page when viewed using a desktop device

Discussion archives page

A published discussion

The screenshot below illustrates a published discussion page when viewed using a desktop device

A published discussion

My discussions

The screenshot below shows the ‘My discussions’ page which shows the collection of discussions that you have published on the website.

My discussions page