Canvas Guides


Timeline  |  Sandbox  |  Announcements

canvasStarting Dec. 9, 2019,  faculty will be able to log into Canvas to start developing their Winter 2020 courses. 

  • Not all PolyLearn-Moodle 3rd party tools will be available within Canvas this Winter. Please check the list to determine if you are ready to use Canvas.
  • Faculty and students will access Canvas via the Portal ( > My Classes portlet. At the bottom of the My Classes portlet, click on the Canvas link within the reddish box. Users can also click on the Canvas link in the left side Single Click list.
  • Users may prefer to use the Mobile app to access Canvas. Please choose "Cal Poly" as the source.
  • 24/7 support is available within Canvas > (?) Help.

Why Canvas?

Cal Poly will begin the transition from its Learning Management System, PolyLearn-Moodle, to Canvas starting Winter 2020. The two systems will run alongside one another during Winter, Spring and Summer, with Canvas fully implemented next Fall 2020. Canvas will position Cal Poly for the future by supporting its pedagogical needs, mobile features, and complying with accessibility requirements. For a quick Canvas overview, view the Instructor video. You can also learn more about the Gradebook (video) and the Speedgrader (video) tools.


Beginning in Winter 2020, faculty can choose to teach with Canvas or PolyLearn-Moodle. Starting Fall 2020, only Canvas will be available. We recognize that this effort will require time and energy, and we will provide support to ease the transition. Thank you in advance for your support in this campus-wide endeavor. During this time, the CTLT will provide online resources, workshops, face-to-face consultations, synchronous video consultations, email, and phone support. Additionally, we will also have 24/7 email/phone support by Instructure (Canvas) and automated migration of PolyLearn-Moodle courses into Canvas.

Timeline Table

Winter 2020 Spring 2020 Summer 2020 Fall 2020
Moodle & Canvas Moodle & Canvas Moodle & Canvas Only Canvas


The CTLT can provide access to the Cal Poly Canvas Sandbox or you can use the free space. You can work on your course redesign now and over Summer 2019. If you have a current Cal Poly account ( and would like a Cal Poly Canvas Sandbox account and course shell, please fill out the online form. We will add you to the self-pace online course for migrating Moodle into Canvas. The Sandbox content can be uploaded into the Canvas Commons (private for you only) or saved to be placed into our production Canvas system in Winter 2020. 

NOTE: This sandbox space will not have students, student participation or student grades. This is only a temporary space provided by Canvas to allow us to test out PolyLearn - Moodle migration and learn the tools. It is a great opportunity for us to get some time-on-task before the production system is available in 2020. This space is only supported by the LMS Support Team. Please email or place comments and questions within the self-paced online course. 


Please email if you have any migration questions, questions about Canvas, or general questions about the LMS.


Message from Provost Enz Finken re: Cal Poly's Next Generation Learning Management System ( PNG  |  TXT)

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This page will be updated on a regular basis. Please return to this page for future updates.

last updated: 10/29/19


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