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Canvas - FAQs for Instructors

This article provides answers to frequently asked questions about Canvas. For a complete list of Canvas help resources, check out the Resources page at courses.uchicago.edu.

Email

How do I send emails to my students from Canvas?

How do I receive copies of email I send to students?

Some of my students claim they do not receive emails I have sent from Canvas.

Content Availability

How do I edit the course navigation tabs, such as Home, Assignments, Syllabus, Modules, or others?

How do I make my course available to students?

How can I confirm what course material is visible to my students?

How do I schedule publication of course material for a certain date?

People

How do I record and grade attendance?

How do I add or remove students from my course site?

How do I see a list of students in my course?

How do I add or remove teaching assistants and co-teachers?

Gradebook

Can I exclude an auditor from the gradebook and from the Roll Call attendance tool?

How do I create a column in Gradebook for an assignment?

How do I weight the grades for assignments in Gradebook?

How do I enter grades into Gradebook?

Calendar

How do I make sure assignments and quizzes appear in the student's Canvas Calendar?

Audio and Video

How do I record an audio file in Canvas?

How do I create an assignment that includes a required audio or video submission from the students?

How do I add Kaltura videos?

Mobile

How do I set up the Canvas mobile app?

How do I conduct In-Class polls?

Chat

What is the box at the bottom right of the chat screen?



Email

How do I send emails to my students from Canvas?

You can find detailed instructions for using email in Canvas in the article How do I send a message to a user in a course in Conversations as a student? at the Canvas website.

To send an email to your class:

  1. Click on the Inbox, found on the main menu located on the very left of the screen when you are logged in to Canvas.
    Canvas Inbox Icon
  2. Click the Compose icon.
    Canvas Compose Icon
  3. Select your course.
  4. Click the address book icon to select the group of recipients.
    Canvas Course Email

How do I receive copies of email I send to students?

  1. You can see a copy of any emails you send to students in your Canvas inbox. Select Sent in the Inbox drop-down menu.
    Inbox Drop-down Menu
  2. If you would like to send a copy of the email to your regular UChicago email:
    1. Click Account > Notifications.
    2. At At Conversations Created By Me, select the Notify me right away option by clicking the checkmark icon.
      Notification Settings
      Notification Settings
    3. Include yourself as a recipient, either by adding your email address to the list of recipients, by sending the email to both Students and Teachers, or by sending the email to all course users.

Some of my students claim they do not receive emails I have sent from Canvas.

All emails sent from Canvas go directly to the recipient's CNetID@uchicago.edu email address by default. Please confirm this is where your students are checking their email. Sometimes new students are not aware they should check their UChicago email regularly.

If they are forwarding their CNetID@uchicago.edu email to another email address, they should check their forwarding settings. See the article Set Up Email Forwarding for more information.

Content Availability

How do I edit the course navigation tabs, such as Home, Assignments, Syllabus, Modules, or others?

In Canvas, there is no way to create new course navigation tabs or edit the names of existing navigation tabs. However, you can disable or rearrange the display order of the course navigation tabs.

  1. At the bottom of the course navigation tabs, select Settings > Navigation to see the Move and Disable options.
    Navigation Settings
  2. Disable all the tabs which are not useful for your course site. Fewer options means less trial and error in site navigation.
    Note: disabled tabs appear for the instructor as light grey links, but are not visible to students.
  3. When you finish your changes, click Savegroup68/69214/ at the bottom of the page.

Note: language instructors can change the language of the navigation tabs by clicking Settings > Course Details > Language. For more information about using Canvas for language courses, see the article Canvas For Language Learning.

Course Availability

How do I make my course available to students?

  1. Go to Home on your course site.
  2. Under Course Status on the top right of your course home page, click Publish.
    Canvas Course Status
    Note: courses for which students have already submitted assignments or quizzes are already published and do not have the Course Status option to Unpublish.

How can I confirm what course material is visible to my students?

  1. Click Settings at the bottom of the course navigation bar.
  2. Select Student View from the list of options on the right side of the screen.
    Student View Option

Note: in the default instructor view, the following principles apply:

  • Light gray navigation tabs are not visible to students. Navigation tabs with a normal black font are visible to students.
  • The cloud icon indicates whether an item is published or not.
    • A green cloud indicates that the item is published.
    • A gray cloud indicates that the item is not published
    • A red cloud indicates that the item is published, but access to it is restricted.

How do I schedule publication of course material for a certain date?

For files:

  1. Click the cloud icon.
  2. Select Restricted Access > Schedule student availability.
    Course Material Availability Settings

For discussions, assignments, and quizzes:

Edit the item and choose the Available from and until dates.
Item Availability Calendar Settings

For modules:

  1. When adding or editing a Module, select Lock until.
  2. Edit the item and choose the Lock until date.
    Module Settings

For pages:

There is no way to set a release date directly. However, locking a module until a certain day locks all of its contents, including pages. The contents of a locked module are unavailable, provided those contents do not appear in other published modules.

People

How do I record and grade attendance?

You can either use Roll Call, a Canvas tool for recording attendance, or enter the attendance grades manually.

Use Roll Call:

  1. Enable Assignments under course Settings > Navigation
    Canvas Navigation Settings.
  2. See the article What is the Roll Call Attendance Tool? at the Canvas Community and the guide How do I take roll call using the Attendance tool? at the Canvas Guides website.

Enter attendance grades manually:

  1. Create an Assignment and give it a name like "Attendance".
  2. Find this assignment in Grades and enter the grades.

How do I add or remove students from my course site?

Wait for the student to enroll or drop the course at the Registrar. An hourly data feed with enrollment data from the Registrar adds and removes students from Canvas automatically.

Alert: do not remove students manually. If you delete the student manually on Canvas while he or she is still enrolled as a student through the Registrar, the hourly enrollment data feed will automatically re-add the student to the course.

If you want to add a user who is not enrolling through the Registrar, you can add them then as a Manually Added Student. Manually-added students' course access is not affected by the Registrar's enrollment data feed.

To add a student to your course site manually:

  1. Select People from the menu on the left side of your course site.
    Canvas Course Menu
  2. Click + People to open the Add People dialog box.
    Add People Dialog Box
  3. In Add People, select CNetID and enter the students' CNetIDs. You can add multiple students by separating their CNetIDs with commas.
    Adding People Editor
  4. For students not enrolled through the Registrar, select Role > Manually Added Student..
    Role Selection Drop-down Menu
  5. Select Next.
  6. Verify the identity of the people you added.
  7. Click Add Users.
    Add Users Button

See How do I add or remove teaching assistants and co-teachers? to learn how to add instructors not listed by the Registrar.

How do I see a list of students in my course?

To see a list students enrolled in your course, select People from the menu on the left side of your course site.
Canvas Course Menu

How do I add or remove teaching assistants and co-teachers?

Teaching assistants and co-teachers are not automatically included in Canvas data feeds. You must add these users to your course manually.

To add a teaching assistant or co-teacher:

  1. Select People from the menu on the left side of your course site.
    Canvas Course Menu
  2. Click + People to open the Add People dialog box.
    Add People Dialog Box
  3. Select Role > TA or Co-Teacher.
    Role Selection Drop-down Menu
  4. In Add People, select CNetID and enter the teaching assistants' or co-teachers' CNetIDs. You can add multiple teaching assistants or co-teachers by separating their CNetIDs with commas.
    Adding People Editor

    Note: if the system cannot find a person, you will receive an error message.
    Please cancel the process and send the following information to canvas.uchicago.edu:

    • The full name and number of your course
    • The CNetID of the person you are trying to add
    • The assigned role (teaching assistant or co-teacher) for the person you are trying to add.

    If you continue to try to add them yourself, their Canvas account will not be set up properly and they will have problems logging in.

Can I exclude an auditor from the gradebook and from the Roll Call attendance tool?

No, you cannot exclude an auditor from the gradebook, nor can you exclude them from attendance. In Canvas, auditors have the same permissions and features as students.

However, you may add the person as an observer rather than an auditor. Observers have limited access to the course site. With the exception of quizzes, they can view all of the available content in a course. However, observers may not:

  • Submit assignments
  • Take quizzes
  • Post to discussions
  • Create student collaborations
  • Participate in web conferences
  • View a list of users
  • Send messages to individual course members.

Gradebook

How do I create a column in Gradebook for an assignment?

You add a new column in Gradebook by creating and publishing an assignment.

You are not permitted to add columns to Gradebook manually. Submission of an assignment through Canvas is optional when you make the assignment, so if you just want to add a column in Gradebook for an assignment that is submitted manually (outside of Canvas), select No Submission under Submission Type when you create or edit the assignment.

Watch the video Canvas Gradebook Overview to learn more.

You can also see these Canvas Community articles for more information:

How do I weight the grades for assignments in Gradebook?

Grade weighting automatically determined based on the number of points you give an assignment. You also have the option to weight assignment groups as a percentage of the final grade.

For more information about grade weighting and assignment groups, see: How do I weight the final course grade based on assignment groups?

How do I enter grades into Gradebook?

Select the cell for the appropriate student and assignment and enter the grade.
Gradebook Grade Editor

Calendar

How do I make sure assignments and quizzes appear in the student's Canvas Calendar?

When you assign a due date to an assignment or quiz, it automatically shows up in Calendar. You are given the option to assign a due date when you create a new assignment/quiz or edit an existing assignment/quiz.
Canvas Due Date Settings

Audio and Video

How do I record an audio file in Canvas?

Instructors can create and add audio files to any page, assignment, discussion, announcement, quiz, or syllabus. When you edit the content of any of these items:

  1. Click the media icon in the main toolbar.
    media icon
  2. Click the Record Media tab to record a file directly to Canvas.
  3. Click the Upload Media tab to upload a prerecorded file.
    media tabs

Read detailed instructions in the Canvas Community article How do I upload an audio file using the Rich Content Editor?.

How do I create an assignment that includes a required audio or video submission from the students?

You can create media assignments on Canvas that require students to record and upload audio recordings. When creating or editing the assignment, select Submission Type > Online > Online Entry Options > Media Recordings. Canvas gives students the option to either record new media or upload an existing file.

How do I add Kaltura videos?

You can add Kaltura videos to the content of your course site by clicking the Embed Kaltura Media icon on the Rich Text Editor toolbar.
embed kaltura media icon

You can also enable the Media Gallery for your course site under Settings > Navigation (remember to always click Save after modifying your navigation tabs) and select + Add Media to add new and existing Kaltura video.

When you add Kaltura to Media Gallery or embed it in a page or assignment, for example, you should be able to select from any of the Kaltura media you have uploaded in the past. To add new videos to Kaltura, you have two options:

Add new videos to Kaltura when you are editing a page, assignment, discussion, or other course content:

  1. Select the Embed Kaltura Media icon found on the Rich Text Editor toolbar.
  2. Select My Gallery > Add New.

Enable Media Gallery:

  1. Click Settings > Navigation.
  2. Go to Media Gallery.
  3. Select + Add Media > Add New.
    add media dialog box add new media button

Mobile

How do I set up the Canvas mobile app?

You can find instructions for downloading and configuring the Canvas mobile app at the UChicago Canvas Resources page.

How do I conduct in-class polls?

Polls for Canvas is a mobile app you can use to administer multiple-choice polls during class time. The app is only available for mobile devices. Download it from the Android or Apple stores.

Students must accept the Canvas course invitation and download the Polls for Canvas app before they can take polls. To set up the Polls for Canvas app:

  1. Enter canvas.uchicago.edu when prompted for your Canvas URL.
  2. Log in using your CNetID and password.

Notes:

  • In our small test, we found that data syncing is slightly slower for Android than Apple phones. It is not clear whether this will pose a problem in a larger class, but please be aware of it.
  • Note that the only connection between the Polls for Canvas app and the course is student enrollment. You cannot import poll results into the course at this point and there is no way to view individual student responses. All data remains in the app and cannot be transferred or displayed using the web interface.

For more information about the Polls for Canvas app, see the guide What is the Polls for Canvas app? at the Canvas website.

Chat

What is the box at the bottom right of the chat screen?

The Chat tool in Canvas allows users in the course to chat with one another live.

Alert: This is a public chat. All users have access to all chats and to the entire chat history. You cannot delete chat comments.
canvas chat tool

For more information, see the Canvas Community article What is Chat?




Keywords:LMS, instructure, email, courses, page, module, grade, attendance, roll_call, auditor, observer, assignment, quiz, kaltura   Doc ID:69224
Owner:Cecilia L.Group:University of Chicago
Created:2016-12-06 11:07 CDTUpdated:2017-05-22 09:40 CDT
Sites:University of Chicago, University of Chicago - Sandbox
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