Breaking News! 2015-2016 Pilot Assessments Published!

A man reading a newspaper while sitting on the ground.

Extra! Extra! Read All about the Academic Year 2015-2016 pilots on Canvas at Penn!

There were several Courseware pilots during Academic 2015-2016. Please read the Academic Year 2015-2016 pilot assessments to see:

  • Statistics for each pilot, including school- and program-level information
  • Feedback from pilot participants
  • Courseware Support’s recommendations for each piloted tool

Please bookmark the Canvas at Penn “Pilots” page for updates on future Courseware pilots. If you have any questions, please email canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

Thank You!

Courseware Support would like to thank all of the pilot participants for their willingness to use these tools in their courses and for the feedback they provided. We truly appreciate it! We would also like to thank all of the Local Support Providers for the support they gave pilot participants!

Canvas Production Release: June 25, 2016

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated. Courseware Support posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to the Canvas at Penn blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

6/25/16 Production Release Highlights:

  • Department Label Change: In the account-level “Add a New Course” menu, the “Department” label has been changed to “Subaccount”; this label update is also shown in the “Course Details” page. Although subaccounts are essentially used to separate departments in an institution, this change helps align Canvas terminology.
  • Complete/Incomplete Icon Updates: The icons for the complete and incomplete grades in the Gradebook have been updated to match similar icons throughout Canvas. This change does not affect the student Grades page as the icons were updated in a previous release.
  • Daylight Savings Time: Calendar Events for dates within Daylight Savings Time display correct course and local times.
  • Recent Activity and Content Titles: In the Dashboard “Recent Activity” view, long content titles are wrapped to the next line.
  • Long File Names: File names are truncated if they are longer than 65 characters.
  • Media File Previews: Media files can be previewed in “Files.”
  •  Letter Grade Zeros: When a zero is entered for a letter grade assignment, the letter “F” is shown along with the score of zero.
  • Student View and Unpublished Courses: Student View can be accessed in unpublished courses.
  •  Multiple Quiz Submissions: If a student has multiple quiz attempts, SpeedGrader can display all previous quiz submissions.

For a complete production release update, please see:

Canvas Production Release Notes: June 25, 2016

2016-06-25 New Feature Screencast from Canvas LMS on Vimeo.

Please click here to view the transcript for this video.

Canvas Production Release: June 4, 2016

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated. Courseware Support posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to the Canvas at Penn blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

6/4/16 Production Release Highlights:

  • Admin Roles and Course Quizzes: Users with an admin role are able to take a quiz if they are enrolled in a course as a student. However, if an admin is not enrolled in a course as a student, the admin can only preview the quiz.
  • Recent Feedback Display Extension: The “Recent Feedback” section shows recent feedback for assignments updated in the last four weeks instead of two weeks.
  • Move Icon Replacement in Files: The “Files” toolbar includes an updated “Move” icon. Functionality has not been affected.
  • Sidebar Button Consolidation in People: The “People”-page sidebar buttons have been consolidated into a drop-down menu at the top of the page. Depending on user role, button options may include View User Groups, View Prior Enrollments, Student Interactions Report, and View Registered Services.
  • Syllabus Page Updates: When instructors view the Syllabus page, the Edit button has been moved out of the sidebar, which matches the placement and behavior in other Canvas pages. The “Syllabus” list also includes icons to differentiate assignments from events. No functionality has been affected.
  • Percentage Grades and Decimal Rounding: Percentage-type grades in the Gradebook and SpeedGrader always round to two decimals.
  • Assignment Details Rounding: The “Assignment Details” average score rounds to two decimal places.

For a complete production release update, please see:

Canvas Production Release Notes: June 4, 2016

2016-06-04 New Feature Screencast from Canvas LMS on Vimeo.

Please click here to view the transcript for this video.

Hooray! Canvas Help Is Here to Stay!

Thank You!

Thanks to widespread participation from our users in the Canvas Help pilot during the Spring 2016 term, Courseware Support has decided keep offering this service! We’d like to say “thank you” to anyone who signed up for a Canvas Help appointment and who completed our feedback survey for the service.

The People Have Spoken!

Here are a few of the many thoughtful responses we received from the Canvas Help survey:

“This educational session was very beneficial and I appreciate the staff’s patience and support. Thank you!”

“The one on one teaching environment was great.”

“I like the one-to-one attention and flexibility of staff to accommodate schedules.”

“I had no idea that these workshops were so tailored to the individual.”

“So helpful! Way more so than I expected.”

We hope these testimonials will encourage you to sign up for a Canvas help appointment! If you will be returning for more support, we would like to welcome you back!

You Don’t Have to Go It Alone!

Silhouette of a man sitting with a hiking backpack beneath a sunset.

Why “rough it” solo through setting up and using your Canvas site? Join us for Canvas Help and become a happy camper!

Please visit our Canvas Help schedule to sign up for a Canvas Help appointment. Appointments will start on Wednesday, June 1, 2016.

Please note that Canvas Help appointments will not be offered in August, January and May since these are peak activity times for Courseware Support. Scheduled Canvas office hours will be offered during these times for users who want in-person support. Also, the Canvas Basics workshop will be taught at the start of Fall, Spring, and Summer terms, and but all other workshops will be by request through out Customized Workshop Request Form.

Questions?

Please email Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

Campus Pack Going Away Friday, May 20, 2016

five alarm-clocks on a grass lawn

Time to say “goodbye” to Campus Pack!

On May 20, 2016, Courseware Support will be shutting down Campus Pack, the blog and journal tools in Canvas. The decision was made to discontinue these tools at Penn due to declining usage.

Used Campus Pack Journals? Try Canvas Assignments

As a replacement for journals (private between instructors and students), we recommend Canvas Assignments.

Assignments can be used to:

  • Assess how well students are achieving course outcomes
  • Set up online submissions that can be quickly graded in the SpeedGrader

Used Campus Pack Blogs? Try Canvas Assignments

As a replacement for blogs (open to the entire class), we recommend Canvas Discussions.

Questions?

Please direct any questions to canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

Canvas Production Release: May 14, 2016

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated. Courseware Support posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to the Canvas at Penn blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

5/14/16 Production Release Highlights:

  • Enrollment Invitations and Restricted Start Dates: When a student is invited to a course where students are restricted from accessing the course before the start date, students do not receive an enrollment invitation until the course is available as part of the course, term, or section start date.
  • Concluded and Inactive Enrollment Setting Persistence in Grades: When an instructor enables or disables the setting to view concluded and/or inactive enrollments for a course Gradebook, the enrollments-view persists between Canvas sessions and browsers. Gradebook settings are set on a course-by-course basis.
  • Notifications and Pages: If a user has enabled the “Course Content” notification setting to “ASAP,” notifications are sent when an instructor edits a course page.
  • Student Quiz Grades and Pending Submissions: Overall grades shown in the Global Navigation Menu do not include partial grades from outstanding manually graded quizzes.

For a complete production release update, please see:

Canvas Production Release Notes: May 14, 2016

2016-05-14 New Feature Screencast from Canvas LMS on Vimeo.

Please click here to view the transcript for this video.

Submitting Final Grades

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Wondering how to transfer Grades in Canvas to CIT? The answer is here!

As you wrap up grading for the semester, you might be wondering how you can use the Canvas gradebook to submit final grades for your courses. Although many instructors calculate and include final grades in their Canvas sites, there is no direct integration between Canvas and Courses InTouch (CIT).  Since CIT is the official record for student grades, final grades must always be added there.

If you use Canvas for grading and calculating a final grade, you can export the Gradebook as a CSV using the instructions here and work with it offline in Excel:

How do I download scores from the Gradebook?

If you have any questions, please contact Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

Canvas End-of-Term Grading Checklist

The following checklist has been designed to help your end-of-term grading run smoothly.

1.) Download and Save the Current Version of the Canvas Gradebook

It’s a best practice to download and save a course’s Canvas gradebook before entering final grades. Here are instructions for how to download the Canvas gradebook:

How do I bulk download Assignment submissions in Canvas?

2.) Finish Entering Grades in Canvas

Depending on the type of assignment or “quiz” (exam, test, quiz, or survey), you may have a several feedback and grading options. To learn about these options, please see the Grades and SpeedGrader sections of the Canvas Instructor Guide.

Woman frustrated in front of laptop.

Avoid grading headaches by following these simple steps!

3.) Unmute All Assignments and Quizzes

Muting in Canvas is when you hide feedback and grades from students. If you have used muting throughout the semester, you should double-check see if all of your assignments and quizzes are unmuted. Not only will you want to unmute assignments so students can receive your feedback and grade, but you will also want to unmute assignments and quizzes for the total grade that your students see in their Canvas grade summaries so that it match the course grade you enter in Courses InTouch (CIT). If you don’t unmute assignments and quizzes, your students will not see their real total course grade in Canvas, as it will not include their muted assignments.

For more information about muting and an in-depth explanation with screenshots of why you should unmute your assignments and quizzes at the end of the semester, please see:

Hiding Grades from Students

4.) Download and Save the Final Version of the Gradebook

Please see the instructions in the first step. It’s a good idea to keep both versions of the gradebook–pre-final grading and post-final grading–for your records.

5.) Upload the Gradebook to Courses InTouch (CIT)

Follow the directions at http://www.upenn.edu/registrar/CIT/CIT-OLG-user-guide.pdf to upload your grades to Courses InTouch. (See Section 13.4 “Uploading a Grade Roster”).

Please note that although these instructions make reference to Blackboard, the spreadsheet-configuration requirements still apply to the downloaded version of the Canvas gradebook you will upload to CIT.

Questions?

Please email canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.

Video: Grading in Canvas at the End of a Term

We hope you enjoy this video geared towards faculty and TAs managing grades in Canvas using the gradebook! It shows six steps for finishing up grading in Canvas at the end of a term.

Six Easy Steps:

  1. Download and save your Canvas gradebook
  2. Hide (“mute”) assignment grades and feedback from students
  3. Hide total course grades from students
  4. Grade all ungraded assignments
  5. Unhide assignments and total course grades
  6. Download and save finished gradebook

If you have any questions, please email Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu.