Stuart Ryan

How we keep your questions flowing!

Blog Post created by Stuart Ryan Champion on Oct 8, 2019

As many of you will have seen we are now a community of more than 500,000 members worldwide (*high fives, go TEAM*) and to keep the community running smoothly with questions flowing (and not getting stale) sometimes the Canvas Coaches or Community Team jump in and mark the questions with either ‘Marked Correct’ or ‘Assumed Answered’ depending on a number of factors. Today, I want to demystify the when and why of these statuses.

 

Marked Correct/Correct Answer

This status can be used by the author of the question as well as us. If you ask a question and someone gives you the correct answer that either resolves, or provides an acceptable workaround, you can click the ‘Mark Correct’ button on the question. Marking a question as correct lets the community know that:

  1. If someone has the same issue, the correct answer appears directly below the question (very handy especially for those that find a question from Google and are unfamiliar with the community).
  2. If someone with a particular skill set is has some time free to help out, they can focus their time on an open question.

 

The status is also used by the Coaches and Community Team in a number of situations. The times we will use the ‘Marked Correct’ status include:

  • Link to an active open-for-voting feature idea or we suggest you log a new feature idea: If there is an already active feature idea, or we recommend you log a new feature idea we mark that post correct. We do this so that everyone can easily see the existing feature request or that the requested functionality is not available and needs a new feature-idea.
  • Referral to an alternative support channel: Sometimes there are things that the community is unable to assist with, so we refer you to the correct support channel and mark the question answered. The other support channels we refer you to will often have the capability to see your particular account and school’s Canvas instance and can provide you the help needed especially around enrolments, particular content items, third-party products your school uses, exams and so on.
  • Existing living/active thread: If we are able to find an existing active thread with significant discussion on an identical topic, we will often link to that thread and mark it as the correct answer. We like to keep identical discussions centralised as it makes finding discussions and answers far easier in the long run.
  • Link provided to existing resource/solution: If we see that someone has already answered your question with a correct solution, or we link you to a solution ourselves we select the correct answer.

 

Marked as Assumed Answered

The assumed answered status is used by the Canvas Coaches and Community Team to help the lifecycle of questions in the community and ensure questions do not get stale.

 

As the community continues to grow, ensuring that questions do not linger and become stale is incredibly important.

 

Before we mark a question as assumed answered, we will do everything we can to try to find an answer, workaround, or share it with the right experts by sharing it into another group, prodding the original author for a response, and liaising with other Coaches for ideas.

 

The times we will mark a question as Assumed Answered status generally include:

  • No response from original author: If there are follow-up questions from the community and the author of the question has not responded to follow-up prompts.
  • Multiple correct answers: Occasionally the awesomeness of the community brings several correct answers, or the thread in totality itself is the correct answer.
  • And lastly, the tough one… when the right answer is that there is no answer: This is a really tough one to explain. Sometimes, the correct answer to a question is that there is no answer, it is not a feature available, it is not something that would warrant a feature idea, and despite all our efforts, nobody in the community has a suggestion or way forward for the author. It can be truly disheartening when a question reaches this status, but it is important for us to note that there is no answer (at the time) and the question may need revisiting in future.

 

Hopefully that gives you all some insights into how we manage the epic influx of questions over their lifecycle from inception to answer.

 

Lastly, if you feel there has been a different case that comes up regularly that I have not covered, please feel free to holler and I will happily track it down and pull thoughts together from the Coaches and Community Team.

 

May your Canvassing be awesome as always!
Stuart

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