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Canvas is a web-based application which allows instructors to put class materials on the Internet. It provides a variety of tools to facilitate teaching and learning. The basic tools used in a Canvas course includes a syllabus, learning materials (documents, videos, etc.), discussions, calendar, inbox and notifications, announcements, grades, quizzes, and assignments. Click on each of the links below to learn more.

 Communicate with your Teacher and Peers

There are multiple ways to communicate in your course. Some interactions include Announcements, Discussions, and Conversations.

Announcements (All class participants can see it)

  1. Click the appropriate Announcement title.
  2. Leave a reply for appropriate announcement.

Announcements are a way for teachers to communicate with students about course activities. Students can only create announcements in a group workspace.

Discussions (All class participants can see it)

Canvas provides an integrated system for focused and threaded discussions, which allows both teachers and students alike to start and contribute to as many discussion topics as desired.

You can include media in your discussion posts using the steps outlined in the following links.

Conversations (one or more recipients)

Conversations is the messaging tool used instead of email to communicate with a course, a group, an individual student, or a group of students.

    1. Click the Inbox link in the left side navigation bar.
    2. Enter a name, course, or group you would like to send a message to. Canvas does not support sending emails, this message can only be sent to the Inbox(s) of individuals that you pick in the dropdown menu.
    3. Write and send the message.

Learn more about communicating with your instructor and peers in the Canvas Student Guides.

 Keep Track of your Assignments

Assignments in Canvas are any online activity submission that is graded by the teacher. Assignments include Quizzes, graded Discussions, and online submissions (i.e. files, images, text, URLs, etc.) There are multiple ways to find your Assignments.

There are also many ways to keep track of when your assignments are due. You can:

  • View the Recent Activity feed on your Dashboard.
  • View the To-Do List on the right sidebar.
  • View the Coming-Up feed on the right sidebar.
  • View your Calendar.
  • Hover over the Assignments link in the Global Navigation, and view the To Turn-In list.
  • Locate and click on the Assignments navigation link, and view the Upcoming Assignments list.
  • Locate and click on the Grades navigation link, select the appropriate course, and view your Assignments list with corresponding grades.

Learn more about keeping track of your assignments due in Canvas.Links to an external site.

 Submit your Assignments

Assignments in Canvas are any online activity submission that is graded by the instructor. Assignments include Quizzes, graded Discussions, and online submissions (i.e. files, images, text, URLs, etc.) There are multiple ways to submit your Assignments.

Submit your assignment

  1. Select the assignment that needs a submission.
  2. Click the +Submit Assignment button.
  3. Select submission type tab (File Upload, Google Doc, Text Entry, etc.)
  4. Upload assignment.
  5. Click the Submit button.
  6. Wait until you see the Submission Turned In! message.

Learn more about submitting your assignments in Canvas.Links to an external site.

 Take your Quiz

Quizzes is a Canvas tool that allows your instructor to create question-based assessments for you to practice, demonstrate knowledge and/or skills, express opinions, preferences, and more. 

How do I use Quizzes?


Additional Quiz Tools

  1. Respondus LockDown Browser is a custom browser that prevents students from going to other URLs, switching applications, taking screenshots, copying questions or printing while you take a Canvas quiz. Learn More. (Links to an external site.)
  2. Honorlock is an online proctoring solution that does not require scheduling. Learn More. (Links to an external site.)
  3. ProctorU is a live online proctoring service that allows exam takers to complete their assessment at home. Learn More (Links to an external site.).

Learn more about taking Quizzes in Canvas.Links to an external site.

 Check Your Grades

You can navigate to your grades on Canvas assignments by using the course navigation or global navigation menus.

NOTE: Official Grades will be posted in Banner.

 Check Your Grades in Canvas

  1. Click the Grades link in Dashboard at the bottom right of the screen.
  2. Click on the name of the course in blue to view a specific course.
  3. View grades.

See Instructor Feedback

Your instructor may choose to include comments directly in an assignment submission using inline comments, or annotations. If an assignment's submission details page includes a View Feedback button, you can view these annotated comments through a preview tool called Canvas DocViewer. You can also use Canvas DocViewer to reply to any comments or make your own annotations. 

  1. Open Grades
  2. Click the title of an assignment.
  3. Click the View Feedback button.

Learn more about checking your grades in the Canvas Guides.Links to an external site.

 Submit Peer Reviews

Submit Peer Reviews

A peer review assignment enables students to provide feedback on another student's assignment submission. Peer reviews are a tool that allows communication between students and can help students master the concepts of a course and learn from each other. Peer reviews can be assignment to show student names or display anonymously.

Instructors have the option of marking an assignment for peer review. You will be required to submit your assignment before reviewing your peers assignments.

To Submit a Peer Review:

    1. Click the Assignments link or within a course module.
    2. Locate and click the Assignment title.
    3. Click the name of the assigned peer whose work you will be reviewing.
    4. View the peer review. You must submit at least one comment to complete the peer review. If you want to submit annotations, click on the preview icon.
    5. Remember, when completing a peer review, students cannot see the teacher's comments or their peer's comments on the submission.

Learn more about peer reviewing assignments in Canvas

 Participate in a Group

Groups are like a smaller version of your course and are used as a collaborate tool where you can work with your classmates on group projects and assignments. You can create your own groups, and your teacher may create and add you to course groups.

Your teacher must assign groups in order for you to participate in a group workspace. Please note that the group workspace is different from the entire class's Canvas areas.

To Participate in a Group:

  1. Locate the Groups icon on the left side navigation bar.
  2. Click to see the Groups in which you are enrolled. Groups will appear to the right of course enrollments.
  3. You will only see groups if you are enrolled in at least one group.

What can I do with Groups?

Within groups, students can:

If you are concerned about group work, find helpful tips in the how to be successful at group work online (Links to an external site.) page. 

Learn more about People and Groups (Links to an external site.) in the Canvas Guides

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