Last edited by Noah Stroehle 2 months ago

FAQs [Frequently Asked Questions]

Getting Started Email Multiple Sections Learning Analytics
Course Administration Course Building Content Assessments
Integrating Other
Supported Browsers


Getting Started


• How do I access Canvas?

Login to Canvas with your UT EID and password here.



• I'm getting a Shibboleth error when I try to log in. Why is that?

There were many Canvas instances and log in URLs floating around during the pilot phase. Make sure you are visiting: and logging in with your EID and password.


    • How are TAs added to my Canvas course?

You can add your TA to your course by following the tutorial steps here.

If you receive an error message when trying to add your TA to Canvas, email that person's EID, email address and full name to the following address: .



 • How are students added to my Canvas course?

Students will be added to your Canvas course automatically by the registrar's office.



• Where can Instructors and Students find short, informative videos?

Canvas Video Guide

Canvas Instructor Guide
Canvas Student Guide



• Where can I find printable training and support information to help build my Canvas course?

Please visit the TUTORIALS section of this course. All Canvas tutorials will be accompanied by printable PDFs. For more information refer to the Canvas Instructor Guide.


• What are the similarities and differences in terminology used by Blackboard and Canvas?

Please click the following link for a .pdf document detailing the differences: Blackboard Vs. Canvas Terminology



• Are there trainings available for instructors and staff?

Yes, in addition to the many Canvas workshops that will be offered year-round, top tier instructional technology specialists from CTL and ITS will be hosting OFFICE HOURS, which will be held on selected dates throughout the academic year. For more information, please check out our Office Hours schedule.



• Will the ITS Help Desk handle Canvas questions?

The ITS Help Desk will be a resource for Canvas questions. Check the home page of this Canvas Training Center for more options on getting support for your Canvas questions.



• Will there be any assistance to move my Blackboard content to Canvas?

Yes, the Center for Teaching and Learning provides migration support. To learn more about that click here. Or, you can receive guidance from us during Office Hours.



Change to Supported Browsers

After March 31, 2013, Canvas will no longer actively develop or provide bug fixes for Internet Explorer 8.

What does this mean? Future Canvas releases will not be tested to ensure that new features and updates work the same in IE 8 as in other browsers. Over time, this will likely degrade the user experience for people who try to use Canvas in IE 8.

Canvas typically supports the two most recent versions of the major browsers. You can find a current list of supported browsers in the Canvas Guides.



 • I just sent an email to my class, but I don't see any confirmation that it was sent?

There is confirmation that it was sent, but it won't appear in your Canvas Inbox or your primary email account. It will, however, appear in your Canvas Sent Box.

To access the Sent Box, click on the Inbox drop-down menu in the upper left of your Canvas Inbox and select "Sent." There you will see that a thread has been created for each of the recipients of the message you just sent.

You will only need to do this for initial messages. All replies will appear in your inbox and get copied to your primary email account.



• Can email messages sent to students be archived in Canvas?

Yes, and here's how: Select any message in your inbox and a gear icon will appear. Select the gear icon and a drop-down menu will appear with five options: Mark as Unread, Star, Unsubscribe, Archive, and Delete. Select Archive and the message will disappear from your Inbox.

[To view Archived Messages, select the Inbox icon directly above your Inbox in the left margin. You will see an option to view Archived messages.]



• Can I send an email to all students (same course with many sections)?

Yes. Conversations is the messaging tool used instead of email to communicate with a course, a group, an individual student, or a group of students. Click on the Inbox, Click on the Address Book icon in the To: field. Then click on the course name to select the entire course. After clicking on the course name, you have the option to choose who you want to send it to. Check the box next to Everyone to send the message to your whole class (including the teachers and teaching assistants).



• Can I send an email to a section of specific students?

Yes. Conversations is the messaging tool used instead of email to communicate with a course, a group, an individual student, or a group of students. Click on Inbox, then click on the Address Book icon in the To: field. Then click on the course name to select the entire course. After clicking on the course name, you have the option to choose who you want to send it to. Check the box next to Everyone to send the message to your whole class (including the teachers and teaching assistants). Use the arrows to get a new dropdown menu to select the people you want to send your message to. You can select Everyone, Teachers, Teaching Assistants, Students and specific sections.

Multiple Sections


• How will Canvas handle multiple sections of the same course?

Please visit the Canvas landing page and click on the "Cross-list your Courses" link found on the lower right-hand side of the page.



• Can I send Announcements to multiple sections of a course?

Yes. Announcements are used to communicate with students about the logistics of your course. As soon as you have submitted an Announcement, Canvas takes care of notifying students according to their preferred Notification Preferences, through Facebook, Twitter, SMS, or email. Canvas also creates a new Discussion so that students can respond to your Announcement with comments and questions.


 Integrating Other Technologies and Applications


• Can plagiarism prevention software be embedded into Canvas to support academic honesty?

Yes. Canvas supports Turnitin, however, currently UT Austin does not have a Turnitin account. We are currently investigating other plagiarism tools. In the meantime, we have devised a work-around, please check out our tutorial on using SafeAssign within Blackboard (even if you are using Canvas for your course.)


• How can we integrate iClicker into Canvas?

Integration with iClicker is relatively easy to learn. Please visit our complete tutorials on iclicker's integration with Canvas at EDU tech here.



• Can faculty easily submit grades to the Registrar's online grade submission system?

Yes. The Registrar's online system has been configured to receive export files generated by the Canvas gradebook.



• Can we easily add social network sites to Canvas to maintain communications with students?

Yes. This is considered a "Registered Service." These services can be connected by clicking on the "Profile" Link in the upper right hand corner.



• Does this feature adhere to FERPA?

Yes. All "Registered Services" are vetted by The Information Security Office at UT Austin.

Learning Analytics


• Are there any learning analytics available for the course instructor?

Yes. As of summer 2013, instructors can view course analytics that include course activity, completion of assignments, and grade trends.

Individual student analytics include page views, participations, and completion of assignments. 


Course Administration


• Can I view my course as a student?

Yes, if you click the Settings link in your course menu, the Student View button is at the top right corner of the page.



• How can I set up multiple sections of the same course within Canvas?

At this time the Registrar will be sectioning courses that have multiple sections.  Cross-listed courses will need to be sectioned by the instructor.  Here is a tutorial that will walk you through that process.



• What is meant by the term “published” for a course?

Publishing a course means making your course available to students. Publishing a course is NOT the same thing as making your course public. Making your course public means making your course available to anyone on the internet. Public courses only make their content. All student information is private, always.



• How can we publish a course?

On the Home page of your course, you will see a banner at the top center of the page that reads "THIS COURSE IS UNPUBLISHED" and underneath this banner a line of text that reads "Only teachers can see this course until it is published." Click on the word "published" and a menu will appear that will allow you to publish your course.

Note: Your students will not be able to access your course until you publish it. Also, they will not receive any messages that your send from Canvas until the course is published.



• Can we copy courses from semester to semester if we intend to use a large portion of the same content/structure?

Yes. There are several ways to copy course materials from semester to semester. The easiest way (that also affords you the most control) is Import Course Content. Open the course you wish to import content into. Open your course Settings panel, in the right margin click on the "Import Content into this Course" button. From there, select "Copy a Canvas Course" from the drop-down menu, and the rest is self-explanatory. This method will allow you to decide, down to the most granular degree, what you would like to copy from another Canvas course.



• Can we make our course inaccessible to students after the semester ends?

Yes. In your course Settings Tab, click the button on the right side "Conclude This Course." This will purge your student roster from the course, thereby making it inaccessible to students.

Another method is to go the your course settings page and, on the Course Details Tab, click the "Edit Course Details" button and look for term start and end dates. Set an end date for the term and check the box underneath the end term date that reads "Users can only participate in the course between these dates."




• Can students upload materials and files?

Yes. Students can upload materials and files. Students can also upload different file types for assignments and quizzes, depending on how the instructor configures the assignment or quiz when they create it. Please refer to the following tutorial on how to configure assignments to receive student uploaded materials.



• Would there be any security issues?

 Security issues, no. Issues of appropriateness, maybe.



• What are folders in Canvas?

 Folders in Canvas are the same as folders in any computing environment, they are containers for organizing files.



• Can we embed YouTube videos?

Yes, embedding YouTube content, or any video content for that matter is incredibly easy.



• What are files in Canvas?

Files in Canvas is a virtual files library. Think of it as a hard drive for your course where you can organize and store different kinds of files, be they word docs, pdfs, audio, video, or even html web pages. Students cannot see the Files area of your course. Each course in Canvas has a files area with a 3GB storage limit.

Note: Every user in Canvas, Teachers, TAs, and students alike, all have a personal Files area on their profile page where they can upload and store file types of all kinds for use in their courses. Each user in Canvas has a personal files area that has a storage limit of 500MB.



• Can we add URL links to our course pages?

Yes. In your text editor there is a button decorated with an icon that looks like several links of a chain. Click on that to insert a URL into a course page.



• Is it easy to grab materials from Blackboard onto Canvas?

Yes. If you want to "grab" a file from Blackboard: Go to the "Files" repository inside Blackboard located in the Control Panel and download the file locally. Once you're ready to import this file into Canvas, "Edit the Page" and "Insert Content into the Page."

Course Building


• How do I organize my course in Canvas?

You will note that there is a course wizard inside Canvas that walks you through many of the things you will need to do in order to properly set  up your course. More importantly, though, it will be important for all of us to think of Canvas less as a replacement for Blackboard, and more as integrative technology that can engage students, extend the classroom beyond class time and support and inspire humans in the processes of learning and teaching.



• What suggestions do you have to build a course?

Wow, we're were really hoping you would ask us that. Please come to our Office Hours or Trainings so we can meet with you in person and explore some possibilities.



• Where do you put folders or files in Canvas?

You put files and folders in the Files tab of your course. You can drag & drop files into the Files area from your computer's desktop. You cannot drag & drop folders, however what you can do is compress folders (possibly containing other folders) or compress groups of folders together on your computer desktop by right-clicking (PC) or Control+clicking (Mac) and selecting the option to compress into a zip file.

In the upper right of the your Canvas course's File area, there is a button to "Import a zip file" which will automatically upload and unpack any zip file into your Files area.



• What is a Module?

Modules make it possible to organize course content by week, topic, or day. Modules can also make it possible for instructors to centralize all course content and materials that students will need access to throughout the semester, thereby allowing instructors to hide left hand navigation tabs from students, thereby making their Canvas experience much less frustrating. 

Modules can also be configured by instructors to include prerequisites, requirements for individual pieces of content, and mandatory viewing of content in sequential order.



• Can we export modules from one course to another?

You can export all of your modules or just one module from one course to another. The copying process in Canvas is incredibly granular.



• What is this Require Respondus LockDown Browser Option?

The Respondus LockDown Browser is a subscription-only option that is only currently available to instructors in the School of Nursing, as they have paid for a Respondus subscription for their 40 seat computer lab. This option will not work anywhere else on campus at this time. All other instructors should ignore this option.



• I don't see any exam feature in Canvas, am I missing something?

Quizzes is the assessment tool used in Canvas. In Canvas, a quiz can be easily modified and configured to serve as pop quiz or a final exam.



• Can I randomize questions/items when administering a quiz or exam?

Yes. You will find that creating assessments in Canvas offers you a considerable amount of options for test administration.



• What are the options for grading student work and submissions in Canvas?

You can manually enter grades in the Canvas gradebook, but you will use the Speedgrader to grade, annotate, and comment on student's uploaded assignments to Canvas. Click here to learn more about Speedgrader.



• Are there any quiz options?

Yes. Follow this link for an overview of quiz options



• How easily can we attach files and images in quizzes?

The Rich Text Editor can pull images from Flickr Creative Commons or you can link to course content (files, images,etc).
Click on the following link for instructions on how to pull images from Flickr Creative Commons

Click on the following link for instructions on how to link to course content.



• Once I publish my quiz can I give my students extra time or extra attempts?

Find the Quizzes Link on the side menu. Find the quiz you want to moderate and click on the quiz link. Once you click on the quiz link, you will need to then click on the Moderate This Quiz button. Here you can moderate if you want to give a student another attempt or more time on a quiz by clicking on the pencil icon by the student's name. You can select one or all of the students in your course. Click the following link for more information on Moderating Quizzes.