I never know when I should be doing a blog post, document, discussion, etc. but this just felt like a blog ( I think ). While the Clark County School District is pretty massive (over 44,000 employees and 318,000 students) our core group of Canvas people is quite small. A majority of management, development, and support comes down to just 3-4 people. We have shared some things in the past like templates for courses and templates for "conference-style" courses in commons but we haven't shared too much code in the past.
Over the last 2-3 years we have been expanding our hacks of Canvas to try to increase adoption and respond to teacher and student needs. While we have created some very cool things we find that getting feedback from other developers and users is what we're lacking. In an effort to expand our reach for collaboration to other districts and higher ed, we have decided to start sharing more. To that end Robert Carroll has recently posted a couple things to github that we have found helpful. Hopefully you will too.
Create a "Workroom"
We don't let our teachers create courses on their own but we found the need for our teachers to make practice courses for themselves if they were going to leverage Commons, professional development, or just to play around and experiment with Canvas. We managed to do this by:
- Making sure every employee is a teacher in one "workroom", giving them the teacher role
- Turning on the ability to create courses for "teachers"
- Hiding the button to create courses from them
- Coding a link that creates the additional workrooms for them (and adds them as the teacher)
Check out Robert's post on how we did this.
Sub Account Menu
We have a lot of sub accounts (8,090 and counting). When you're a top level account admin and have more than even 20 sub accounts, you may find yourself frustrated with navigating to the one you need. This fixes that... big time. Yes, it only helps about 8 people, but speaking as one of those eight people, I love it! Plus, if you save account admin time, that equals quicker support for your users.
When we share something else, I'll be sure to update. In the meantime, hope to see you in the community and at InstructureCon!
Global Nav - Custom Tray
There were several institutions that lost the functionality of some custom "pop out" menus from their global nav after a Canvas recent update. Robert worked on that, (starting with some code he credits in his post), and posted a solution over in the developers area.