Quick Canvas Tips

  1. For ease in recording end-of-semester grades, go to Gradebook, and in “Total” click the three little buttons in the box—one of them allows you to move grade totals to the front (next to the student’s name)
  2. When creating discussion posts in a merged class, click “Group Discussion” and then name the discussion.  Indicate how many groups you want and click that the students must be in the same section. You can create groups first in “People” and then select the group when you create the discussion.
  3. If you use pages and you want to make sure a page is the front page (first thing a student sees when the student logs into the class), make sure it is published and then, from that page, go to the upper right drop down and select “Make Front Page.” You can also do this from the “Pages” link that shows all pages. Just click on the three dots next to the page you want to be the front page and select “Make Front Page.”
  4. To create an extra credit assignment, just make the assignment worth no points (it will still show up in gradebook) and you can give it as many points as you wish.  You can also when creating the assignment have it excluded from the total. Weighted assignments do work differently.
  5. For group discussions you can make the first post required the due date, and then have the “open until” date be a few after the due date so you can accept responses to the post.
  6. You can hide most anything on Canvas—do that from “Settings” (navigation)—Consider hiding the attendance function if you are online.  If you are f2f, it defaults to 100 points if you use it, so you will want to adjust those points if you don’t want to designate 100 points for attendance.
  7. When emailing merged classes, be sure to select the course, then select “class sections”, then pick the section and then select “all” in that section.  This way your emails go only to that class (and students can’t see the names of the students in your other class).
  8. Make sure you publish the actual module, not just assignments in the module if you want students to be able to see the module.
  9. The calendar is your friend—wise to add dates there if you already know they are coming up, even if the assignment isn’t created yet.  You can also delete a manual calendar addition.  Canvas will list anything you put a date on in the calendar, so if you put a to-do date on a page, it will appear in the calendar.
  10. It is also easy to change dates for multiple assignments just by moving them on the calendar.   You can click and hold on an assignment in the calendar to drag and drop to another date.
  11. You can set up notifications to let you know when a student has responded to an assignment you have created.  You can have all Canvas email pushed to your JCCC email.
  12. You can limit file types you accept for assignments by going to the edit function midway down and selecting “file types”—just type in which ones you will accept.
  13. If you use Turnitin as a way to demonstrate to students visually what source material they have not cited, open the drop box a few days before the assignment is dueand encourage them to look at it. If you are encouraging revisions and multiple submissions to the Turnitin link, select “Do not store” until the paper is due or the students revised paper will come up as a match to their original draft; consider changing to “store in student repository” at the due date.
  14. The “text header” in modules can have an unlimited number of characters but is a very small box when editing. Write your text header in a different program (Word) and then cut and paste into the box provided under “text header.”  This way you can have a block of instructions at the top of a module.
  15. You can record videos directly from Canvas. Click on “Yuja” and at the top of the screen you will see “create recording.”