Rational for integrating external apps into Canvas ecosystem.
- Canvas as the Hub: There are so many great apps out there which enrich our teaching and learning experiences, but asking students to navigate away from Canvas for any reason may be challenging, confusing, and distracting for many. By integrating your apps you are creating a one-stop-shop for your scholars and saving time, energy, and concern for yourself as an instructor.
- Auto Gradebook Updating: When a Canvas "Assignment" leveraging an installed app using the "External Tool" option is published a gradebook instance is automatically created. The gradebook is also populated with scores as student responses are marked in "SpeedGrader".
- Streamlined Workflow: Because content creators and consumers engage with all materials in the Canvas environment workflow efficiencies are gained creating time for other important tasks while reducing unnecessary stress.
Step 1: Installing External Apps into Canvas Course
- Choose a course page
- Navigate to "Settings"
- Select the "App" tab
- Search for "Flipgrid"
- Click the "Add App" button under the app logo
- Input "Consumer Key" and "Shared Secret" into dialogue box
- Find "Consumer Key" and "Shared Secret" under "integrations" from your Flipgrid account information tab in the upper right-hand corner
- Copy and paste the "Consumer Key" and "Shared Secret" into the "Add App" dialogue box and click the "Add App"
- A new "Flipgrid" tab will now be available in the "Navigation" tab of the "Settings" page. Drag and Place the link to the desired location before clicking "Save" at the bottom of the "Navigation" tab.
- Now, when you navigate to “Flipgrid” your Flipgrid.com dashboard appears. QUICK TIP: Avoid creating new content for a future Canvas Assignment instance from the ever tempting red “Add New Topic” button. Content created in this way is NOT selectable in the “+Assignment” process at this time. Flipgrid automatically pulls course information, but it is always good to double check that the title of your Grid matches your Canvas course title.
Step 2: Setting up an Assignment leveraging the newly installed Flipgrid App
- Commence the process as any other Canvas "Assignment" by selecting the "Assignment" tab in the left navigation menu and clicking the "+Assignment" button.
After you add your instructions in the assignment content management panel scroll down to the “Submission Type” section, select the “External Tool” option, and search for and select the Flipgrid tool.
- QUICK TIP: Don’t forget to add a “Due” Date and “Save and Publish”. This ensures that your new assignment appears on your student’s Canvas Calendar as well as their “To-do” list automatically.
- When students engage with the "Assignment" they will see not only the teacher's written and/or video instructions they will also see the embedded Flipgrid topic. As they scroll they will see the enticing big green plus button which Flipgrid uses as the beginning of the recording process. Even nested inside Canvas students and instructors will have access to all of the fun and functional design elements like emojis, stickers, backdrops, and more.
Step 3: Grading Flipgrid Canvas Assignments utilizing SpeedGrader
- The joy of leveraging Flipgrid as an "Assignment" in Canvas is that an instructor gets to use most of the "SpeedGrader" features. You may assign a grade, leave written comments, or even produce a video response. The only feature which is not integrated for "External Tool" submissions are "Rubrics". For a prolific user of rubrics this is not ideal; however, one can easily build a rubric while creating the Flipgrid Topic during the "Assignment" creation process.
Step 4: Keep an eye on the Gradebook because it will make you smile.
When leveraging Flipgrid as a Canvas "Assignment" a gradebook instance is automatically created. Scores also populate the gradebook as the instructor grades student responses in "SpeedGrader" alleviating the need for double entry and screen swapping while streamlining instructor workflow and improving accuracy. In short; everyone wins .
Here are some additional resources provided by Flipgrid.com:
**Please keep in mind the timing of this post. Processes and outcomes mentioned above could change at anytime as Canvas and Flipgrid continue to improve their integrations. I also look forward to hearing from the Community. Let me know if you have any questions, comments, or observations. I'm always happy to help.**
Brandon K. Risenhoover