How to use the Q&A forums

Our  Q&A forums are a great place to ask questions about a specific mission or step, review previously asked questions and replies, and help your fellow Dataquest students. In many ways, it was inspired by Stack Overflow, a core tool of the DS world. 

In this article:

  1. Overview
  2. Q&A Best Practices


You'll find the Q&A tab above the Learn text inside each mission - simply click the tab to open the sidebar. If you have a question about the mission, we recommend that you first browse through that mission's Q&A to see if it's been asked (and/or answered) previously.

Asking and answering questions

If your question has not already been asked, you can ask it by clicking Ask a question.

Alternatively, if you see a question that you can help with, you should take it upon yourself to provide an answer. It's been proven over and over again that the ability to explain a topic is a key indicator that you, yourself, understand it — use these opportunities not only to help your peers, but to force yourself to "teach" and deepen your understanding of the course material.

Upvoting questions and answers

If you find a useful question or answer you can 'up-vote' it using the upward pointing arrow on the left side of the post. Up-voting a post will display it higher in the forum to signal other students this might be useful to them as well. It will also send a notification to the writer of the post.

The Q&A is for peer to peer help, and isn’t monitored regularly by the Dataquest team. If you need support from us, please use an  alternate channel.

Q&A best practices

What follows are helpful suggestions for making the most out of your Q&A experience.


Use markdown to format your code.

Nothing makes someone go from "ready to help" to "eyes glazing over" faster than a wall of unformatted code. Use a pair of backticks (`), not to be confused with a single quote ('), to format code inline, or three sets of backticks surrounding code on new lines to create a code block. Trust us — your peers will appreciate it!


Link to the page you're working on.

Copy and paste the URL of the page your question is referring to to make it easier for your peers to locate.


Use the 1:1 rule if you're asking a question.

If you're going to ask a question, try to take some time to answer one in return. Not only is it good etiquette, but it challenges you to explain a concept, which in turn reinforces your own understanding of it. One of the absolute best ways to learn is taking the time to go through the Q&A and answer what you can and research what you don't.