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Changes often force us to adapt in ways we’ve never experienced, which can be a major driver of personal (and even professional) growth and development.

One-Stop Shop

Before Class   |   During Class   |   End of Class

Many of us are new to Canvas and don't realize there are things that can make the experience unfavorable. 

For example, you publish your course early, but none of your students can access your course to complete the assigned activity. 

This page is a One-Stop-Shop for using Canvas. All this information is located within this site or on the Canvas Guides. We hope that this provides the help you need to be successful. Please feel free to request additions via  

warning = for items that can cause problems. 

Before Class

Getting started....

Getting ready to teach...

During Class

  • warning Students MUST accept the invitation (People > "pending") to the course to be able to open it. It is emailed to their Cal Poly email and should appear on the Dashboard. You can send another invite if they can't find it. 
  • warning During the add/drop period, students who are adding your course will not be added into your Canvas course until the middle of the second week. You should manually add students to your course (while they wait for the add code to officially enroll) as soon as possible. After the official add, confirm the student has "registered" for this course and appears in your Portal's -, Class Roster. 
  • warning Do NOT duplicate your Module with a Graded activity. It is easy to mistakenly change your graded Assignment, New Quiz, or other and negatively effect your course grades. It is best to create a Module (with ungraded activities hidden in the grades) JUST for duplication and only duplicate that one.
  • warning When you create a graded item in the Module Index, it is also added to the Assignment Index. The Assignment Index menu link is the Gradebook view and how you organize your Gradebook (order, weights, hide/show). Think of the Assignment index as "All Assignments". The Modules is a way to present content linearly.  
  • Us the Copy To feature to copy a quiz from one course to another.  
  • warning Once Groups are created and students are graded within a Group - DO NOT change those groups! If you delete or edit groups you can Loose the graded "annotations" and they cannot be retrieved. Use Group Sets if you want to create new groups. If you want to change groups that already have student submissions, you need to Clone the group.
  • warning The Discussion tool isn't really for upload and embedding files into the Discussion reply. Discussion upload and embed uses the User Storage that is only 50MB/person. Students can attach their files from OneDrive, Google, or other. 
  • For file submissions, better to use the Assignment tool.
  • Anonymously Peer-Review Assignments will not allow the students or faculty to annotate/markup. 
  • Always provide a "practice" option for each graded activity. For example - a syllabus quiz is a low-stakes quiz that will help students work out any technical issues early before a high-stakes quiz.
  • warning Make sure your Practice Quiz includes Images if you are using images an ANY question. Students must use Chrome while taking a quiz with images. 
  • Create formative assessments and communicate often with your students.
  • warning Create accommodations (Moderate) for students in a Classic Quiz or New Quiz. Also Assignment accommodations.
    NOTE: When setting accommodations for a Quiz...make sure the UNTIL date is set to allow DRC students their date/time as well. Meaning the quiz is due 10/14/20 10am for everyone, but the last DRC it is due 10/14/20 need to set the UNTIL to 8pm. 
  • warning DO NOT change the Assign to once students have completed the Quiz or Assignment. The attempts will be missing until you add the same dates back for everyone.  You can create a new deadline for someone after everyone else has completed the quiz. Before anyone has taken, DRC students can be given accommodations
  • warning If you want students to see Quiz results (answers) after they/everyone take(s) the need to choose the "results" settings before anyone takes it. You cannot change these settings after. You can use the Grading Policy - Manual to hide the grade/results until you choose to Post
  • warning If you create a Quiz with a Question Group and within that group you have a "file upload" question will NOT be able to download the files. The work around is to create a NEW "file upload" question outside of the Question Group worth 0 pts (tell students they don't have to answer). 
  • You can review course and student analytics. NOTE: Canvas data is NOT the same as PolyLearn's. 

At the End of Class

  1. Allow students to complete their course due to an incomplete    
  2. Allow students to access the course after the term ends (Winter 21 - Mar. 29, 2021)   
  3. Restrict students from accessing the course after the end date 


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