Canvas FAQ's

Below are the answers to some frequently asked questions regarding Canvas. Some answers also include links to additional information in the TWU Knowledge Base.

How do I locate and log into Canvas?

How to Log into Canvas

Once you have a Pioneer Portal account you should be able to log into Canvas. Let's get started. First, open your web browser (we suggest using the most recent version of Mozilla, Firefox, or Google Chrome) and go to the TWU website.

  1. In the browser’s address bar type http://twu.edu and click Enter.
  2. The TWU website will open, at the top of the page click Faculty & Staff
  3. Click My Courses

The My Courses page will open. TWU uses Canvas to support online, hybrid, and face-to-face courses. 

  1. From this page, click on the Log into Canvas button.
  2. A login screen will open in a new browser window, enter your TWU Portal Username and Password.
  3. Click on the Login button.

Additional Information and Resources

Your Dashboard is the first thing you will see when you log into Canvas. Courses you are teaching may not be immediately available because:

  1. Canvas is updated with the instructor of record information from the Colleague system. Check with your academic component leadership for additional information.
  2. Students will only see your Canvas course if it is published. Review How do I publish a course?

Support Options

  1. Information on How to request a Canvas Sandbox course is available.
  2. Contact an Instructional Design Partner to create learning activities for students, training to use Canvas features, or talk about effective ways to design your Canvas courses.
  3. To request technical support, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket.

Related Knowledge Base Articles: Getting Started with Canvas (Instructors) and Canvas Help

 

How do I get help with Canvas?

You are welcome to contact your Instructional Design Partner for assistance at any stage of your course design process, whether you are developing a brand new course or making improvements to an existing course.

To request technical support, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket.

Related Knowledge Base Articles: Getting Started with Canvas (Instructors) and Canvas Help

How do I request a sample course shell (Sandbox) in Canvas?

Canvas Sandboxes are available to instructors to design and develop your courses. Instructors may request a Canvas Sandbox for every course they teach. One or more sandboxes may be requested at a time. Please include the course numbers, for example ENG 1013, NURS 4612. To get started submit a Technology Service Desk email to create a ticket.

You will receive an email message when your Canvas Sandbox course is available.

Related Knowledge Base ArticleHow to request a Canvas Sandbox course

How do I embed files from my Google Drive into Canvas?

You can create a hyperlink or embed a file from Google Drive into your Canvas course. Create a document, slide presentation, or spreadsheet using Google Drive and then embed that document anywhere the Rich Content Editor is in Canvas like Announcements, Assignments, Discussions, Pages, Quizzes, or Syllabus. When files are linked in the Rich Content Editor, the link displays the exact name of the file. For embedded files, any time you edit the Google file, the edits also display in Canvas.

If you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

Related Knowledge Base ArticlesGoogle Drive and Canvas and Canvas Help

How do I request a custom Canvas Home Page for my course?

The Canvas Course Home Page is the first view your students will see when they enter your course. For the Course Home Page, you can work with an instructional designer to select a design, customize the details, and create your perfect Course Home Page.

If you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

Related Knowledge Base Article: How to Request a Custom Canvas Home Page (Instructors)

How do I send a message to students in Canvas before the class starts?

Announcements can only be sent if the course is both published and available to students. An email message (conversation) can be sent to students if the course is published and still unavailable to students. The procedure is:

To send a message to students in your Canvas course before classes begin:

  1. The Canvas course must be published. Open the course and follow this process to publish the course while being unavailable to students. This is done by setting a Start and End date for the course and allowing users to participate in the course between these dates. The details are included in How do I change the start and end dates for a course?
  2. Once the Canvas course is published, click on Inbox and compose a message to students in the course. The details are included in How do I send a message to a users in a course in the inbox as an instructor?

If you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

Does Canvas have a Mobile app?

Yes, you can access Canvas from any browser on your Android/iOS device. However, mobile browsers are not supported, and features may not function as expected compared to viewing Canvas in a fully supported desktop browser.

On mobile devices, Canvas is designed to be used within Canvas mobile applications. Canvas pages are supported when an action in the app links directly to the browser, such as opening a Discussion. Support is not extended to pages that cannot currently be used in the app, such as Conferences.

Additionally, Canvas offers limited support for native mobile browsers on tablet devices. For details, please reference the limited-support mobile browser guidelines. View the Canvas Guide for Mobile Apps or Canvas mobile features [pdf] by version and device for the list of features available on the app at this time.

The Canvas Teacher Mobile App documentation is available:

If this is your first time to log into a Canvas Mobile App, you will need to access the TWU account:

  1. Type Texas Woman's University to enter the school information.
  2. Log into the Canvas Mobile App by entering your TWU Username, Password, and tap the Login button.

Related Knowledge Base ArticleCanvas Mobile Apps (Instructors)

What resources are available for Canvas?

In addition to working one-on-one with your Instructional Design Partner you can take advantage of our resources that are designed to work around your schedule and be available whenever you need them.

  • New to Canvas or TWU? Our self-guided “Getting Started with Canvas” course will take you from logging on to Canvas all the way up to publishing your finalized course. You can also find semester checklists and helpful links (e.g., Professional Development Events, Canvas FAQs, Faculty Final Grading Instructions) you will return to throughout your career at TWU.
  • Looking for inspiration for designing your Canvas courses? We have created the “Canvas@TWU Example Course” to serve as a model of several important Canvas features. Bonus: many of these pages are also templates you can import from Commons and modify in your own courses! You will need a Canvas log-in to access this course.
  • Our Teaching & Learning Guides contain best practices, practical tips, and resources on relevant topics including effective course design, alternative assessments, fostering academic integrity, providing student feedback, and more.
  • You can find our closed captioned videos on our YouTube channel. Topics range from Canvas Quick Tips to incorporating accessibility and Universal Design into your courses. Be sure to subscribe to our channel to stay up to date with our latest videos.
  • Want to submit your course(s) for a Quality Matters review? Your Instructional Design Partner is also a QM-certified Peer Reviewer and can help you find the best path to QM certification. Learn more about Quality Assurance at TWU in our Teaching & Learning Guide.
  • We can help you incorporate accessibility and Universal Design for Learning principles into your course content to remove barriers to learning for as many students as possible. Our Universal Design Toolkit has practical tips and best practices for you on creating new course materials and revising existing course materials to meet accessibility guidelines. Your Instructional Design Partner is certified in accessibility and can provide one-on-one support throughout the summer on this topic.

You can find more continuous online training (e.g., Canvas for Graduate Assistants, Classroom Technology at TWU Workshop) on our Professional Development Events page.

Related Knowledge Base ArticlesGetting Started with Canvas (Instructors) and Canvas Help

What content is available to help students get started using Canvas?

It is important to provide additional information and instructions to students using Canvas and other integrated applications that you include in your Canvas course. Available options include:

  1. You can create a Getting Started with Canvas Page in your Canvas course and copy the "Getting Started with Canvas" content (below) into the page to get started OR
  2. Follow the instructions for Importing Student Resources into your Canvas Course as another option.

Getting Started with Canvas

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. All courses at TWU use Canvas. The basic tools used in a Canvas course include a syllabus, learning materials (documents, videos, etc.), discussions, calendar, email, announcements, grades, exams, and assignments. Other helpful resources include:

  1. The Canvas Student Guide is available online if you need any help using email, creating discussion posts and replies, submitting assignments or taking assessments (quizzes and exams).
  2. Teaching and Learning with Technology offers a Guide to Online Learning.
  3. To request technical support, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket.

Importing Student Resources into your Canvas Course

We have created several Student Resources pages for you to import into your Canvas Course from the Commons. A link to the Commons can be found on the Global Navigation menu. Below are instructions to help you import the Student Resources Pages into your course. To find the resource in Commons use the search terms: TWUID, Student Resources

For instructions to import the Student Resources Page review: How do I import and view a Commons resource in Canvas?

Open your Canvas course, click on Pages from Course Navigation and the new Page will be available in your course. You can link the Page to your Getting Started or Welcome Module.

If you would like assistance using Commons or creating a Getting Started or Welcome Module in your Canvas course, please contact your Instructional Design Partner. To request technical support, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket.

Related Knowledge Base ArticleContent to Add to Your Canvas Course for Students (Instructors)

What do I need to do before and after the semester?

The Pre-Semester Checklist, During the Semester Checklist, and End-of-Semester Checklist are available to ensure your Canvas course is ready for students throughout the semester. The checklists are set to “force copy,” so you will need to be logged in to your TWU Google account and click Make a copy to access the checklists.

For additional resources, review Getting Started with Canvas course. This course will introduce you to the Canvas learning management system (LMS), and you will learn how to create, design, and facilitate your Canvas courses at Texas Woman's University. The course is self-guided so you can move through the modules at your pace; however, if you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

What 3rd party tools, e.g., Turnitin and Panopto are available in Canvas?

The following tools are actively integrated with Canvas:

  • Zoom - Zoom is a web conferencing and recording solution that is available in Canvas. Use Zoom to meet with your class online, share an application on your desktop, demonstrate a new concept, hold office hours, watch student presentations, and more.
  • Panopto (Lecture Capture) - Panopto is a lecture capture application that is used to create recordings of classroom-based activities and can be made available for review by students in a course.
  • Turnitin - Turnitin is an electronic text matching system that checks student's submissions against a repository of submitted documents.
  • Online Proctoring and Exam Management - Solutions include: (1) Honorlock is a virtual proctor that records and reviews exams. The Chrome extension prevents students from accessing unauthorized information during testing. (2) Respondus has two applications. One serves as a virtual proctor with Respondus LockDown Browser and/or Respondus Monitor. The other serves as a test creator and manager with Respondus 4.0 Test Generator.
  • Turning (Clickers) - Turning is a wireless Student Response System (SRS), that allows instructors to request information by presenting questions and for students to respond by using a “clicker” to send his or her information to be recorded.
  • Badgr - Badgr creates digital badges as an indicator of accomplishment or skill that can be earned in Canvas.
  • Cielo24 - Using funds procured from the CARES Act: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, TWU has purchased 300 hours of commercial captioning services from Cielo24 to assist instructors in providing accurately captioned audio and video content to all students.

If you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

Will I be able to teach multiple sections from a single course shell? How do I crosslist courses or course sections?

Yes. The process is referred to as Cross-Listing. Cross-Listing identifies one course as the primary course for content and all students from all included course sections have access to that content. When a course is Cross-Listed in Canvas, the students and instructor for that course only see the course with the content. Students from each section that have been Cross-Listed are easily identified in the course with the content.

To get started, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket and request the courses to be Cross-Listed in Canvas. Include the Course ID of each course. For example, 21FABUS353350, 21FABUS353351. You will need to be the instructor of record or course manager for all the courses you are requesting to be Cross-Listed.

If you have questions or need assistance at any time, you can contact your Instructional Design Partner. Your Instructional Design Partner is available throughout the year to assist you with Canvas and with course design and delivery.

Page last updated 9:36 AM, January 3, 2022