How do I use DocViewer in Canvas assignments as a student?

Document created by Canvas Doc Team Employee on Apr 19, 2017Last modified by Canvas Doc Team Employee on Jul 14, 2018
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Canvas DocViewer is a tool that allows annotations on online assignment submissions in Canvas. You can use DocViewer to view annotated feedback in the assignment details section of the sidebar from your instructor or from other students in peer review assignments.

DocViewer has a 10-hour session limit that begins when you open a submission. If you start to make an annotation but do not submit it before the session expires, the annotation will not be saved. Submitted annotations are saved and are not affected by the session limit. Canvas will display a session expiration warning at 9 hours 50 minutes, followed by a 5-minute and 1-minute warning until the 10-hour limit has been reached. You can restart a DocViewer session at any time by refreshing the submission page.

If your browser includes a built-in PDF viewer, select the option to view the PDF in the system viewer.

Compatible DocViewer Files

If a submission includes a file that can be rendered in DocViewer, but the submission preview is not yet complete, Canvas will generate a message stating the document is still processing.

Notes:

  • Files over 100 MB and password-protected files will not be converted by DocViewer.
  • DocViewer annotations can be viewed in the Canvas Student app.
  • Your instructor can delete any comment or annotation at any time.

View DocViewer Toolbar

  View DocViewer Toolbar 

The DocViewer Toolbar helps you manage the assignment submission.

To zoom in and out on the submission, use the Zoom buttons [1].

To view the submission in full screen, click the Full Screen button [2].

To annotate the submission, use the annotation tools [3].

If there are multiple pages, the Page number field [4] will let you advance through the submission to find the page you want to annotate. To go to another page, enter the page number in the Page field. You can also use the arrow icons [5] to advance through the submission.

To download a PDF of the annotated submission, click the Download button [6].

Add Point Annotation

  Add Point Annotaiton 

To leave a point annotation, select the Point annotation type [1].

Select the color for the point annotation in the color panel [2].

Click the desired area of the submission [3]. The point annotation icon will appear indicating the location of the annotation. To add a comment to the point annotation, type the comment in the Comment field [4]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter/Return key. To submit your comment, click the Enter/Return key.

You can reply to DocViewer comments by clicking the Reply button [5].

To move the annotation, hover over the point annotation icon in the document. Click and drag the annotation to the new area.

To delete a point annotation, click the annotation and then click the Delete icon [6]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the annotation. Deleting an annotation will also delete any associated comments.

Add Highlight Annotation

Add Highlight Tool

To highlight text within the document, select the Highlight annotation type [1].  

Select the color for the highlight annotation in the color panel [2].

Click and drag to highlight text within the submission [3].

To add a comment to the highlight annotation, click the Comment button [4]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter/Return key. To submit your comment, click the Enter/Return key.

To delete a highlight annotation, click the highlighted area and then click the Delete icon [5]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the highlight. Deleting an annotation will also delete any associated comments.

Add Text Annotation

Add Text Tool

To add text directly in the submission, select the Free text annotation type [1].

Select the color for the text annotation in the color panel [2].

Select a white or transparent background for the text annotation [3] as well as the font size for the annotation [4].

Click in the desired area of the submission, then type your entry [5]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter key.

To move the annotation, hover over the text box in the document. Click and drag the annotation to the new area.

To delete the text annotation, click the text box and then click the Delete icon [6]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the text box.

Add Strikeout Text Annotation

Add Strikeout Text Tool

To indicate that text should be deleted, select the Strikeout annotation type [1].

Select the color for the strikeout line in the color panel [2].

Click and drag to strike out within the submission. A line will appear indicating the text has been struck out [3].

To add a comment to the strikeout annotation, click the Comment button [4]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter/Return key. To submit your comment, click the Enter/Return key.

To delete a strikeout annotation, click the strikeout area and then click the Delete icon [5]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the strikeout line. Deleting an annotation will also delete any associated comments.

Add Draw Annotation

  Add Draw Annotation 

To make freehand drawings and annotations, select the Free Draw annotation type [1].

Select the color for the drawn annotation in the color panel [2].

Select your annotation line width from the line width panel [3].

Click and drag to start a drawing. Free-form lines will appear indicating the drawing area [4]. You can add multiple strokes to a drawn annotation.

To add a comment to your drawn annotation, click the Comment button [5]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter/Return key. To submit your comment, click the Enter/Return key.  

To accept the drawn annotation, click the Check icon [6].

To move a drawing, hover over the outline of the drawing, then drag and drop the drawing to the new area of the document.

To delete a drawing at any time, click the drawing and then click the Delete icon [7]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the drawing. Deleting an annotation will also delete any associated comments.

Note: Draw annotations can only have one line width per annotation. Individual annotations must be saved before creating a new line with a different width.

Add Area Annotation

  Add Area Annotation 

To leave an area annotation, select the Area annotation type [1].

Select the color for the area annotation in the color panel [2].

Click and drag the rectangle around an area of the submission [3]. A box will appear indicating the area for the annotation.

To add a comment to the area annotation, type the comment in the Comment field [4]. To start a new line in your comment, click the Shift+Enter/Return key. To submit your comment, click the Enter/Return key.

You can reply to DocViewer comments by clicking the Reply button [5].

To move the annotation, hover over the border. Click and drag the annotation to the new area of the document.

To delete an area annotation, click the annotation and then click the Delete icon [6]. DocViewer will confirm you want to delete the comment. Deleting an annotation will also delete any associated comments.

View Comments

View Comments

Individual comments include an icon that displays the type and color of the annotation [1]. The annotation icon displays next to the commenter's name and only displays in the primary comment for an annotation. Replies to a comment do not include the icon.

Instructors may leave additional comments or reply to your comments. When an annotated comment includes more than five content lines, the content box displays an ellipses link [2]. To expand a comment, click the ellipses link. If a comment includes multiple replies, all replies will be expanded.

Comments remain on the page where the annotation was made. If there are too many comments to display on a single page, the comment section becomes scrollable and some comments are hidden. An indicator shows how many comments have been hidden [3].

View Anonymous Instructor Comments

View Anonymous Instructor Comments

If your instructor has enabled Anonymous Instructor Annotations, annotations and comments on your submission will not display the name of the instructor or grader.

View Other User Annotations

View Other User Annotations

When another user adds an annotation within a document, you can view the author of the annotation by clicking the annotation [1].

You can also leave a comment on any annotation created by other users [2].

View Deleted Items

  View Deleted Items 

Your instructor can delete any comment or annotation at any time. If a comment or annotation is deleted, the deleted item displays in the sidebar [1]. You can view the name of the user who made the deletion and the date of the deletion. Items can only be deleted by instructors or admins.

If multiple comments or annotations are deleted, including comment replies with the same comment thread, each comment or annotation will include its own heading information about the deletion.

To permanently remove the deleted item, click the Remove icon [2].

Note: Permanently deleted items cannot be recovered.

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