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2017

As I was planning for how to schedule time this summer, I had to decide how to schedule each week. Like lots of other places we slow down and have little activity on Fridays during the summer. We don't schedule classes that meet on Fridays and many of our classified staff have the option to work a 4/10 schedule instead of a 5/8 schedule. So I felt limited to Mondays through Thursdays each week.

 

The next question was how to set up the introductory workshop series. During the academic year I ran several once-a-week sessions that were one hour long and lasted six weeks. But getting people who are otherwise not coming to campus to be here one day a week for six straight weeks would likely be tough. Fortunately the topics are chunkable so that I could split them into four sessions instead of six.

 

For those weeks without four days I was able to set up a Google Calendar with appointment slots. We are a Google Suite for Education customer, which allows this. I discovered through some testing that *any* Google account can be used when signing up for appointment slots, and that helps my co-workers who are more likely to use a personal Google account. Ah, if only our students and employees were better able to use their district-provided Google accounts. That's a story for another day.

My college is in the middle of a yearlong transition to Canvas. Our faculty get to choose when they start using it, with this past spring semester being the time for our "Canvas trailblazers" and this upcoming fall being the final semester our soon-to-be-former LMS will be an option. Only about 13% of the faculty who used an LMS in the spring chose Canvas, so we are anticipating a lot of demand for training and transition support over the next few months. Hence the summer of Canvas.

 

As a full-time faculty member I do not usually work over the summer, but our management dedicated some resources to help with this transition. We have a great team in our department and my twelve-month coworkers provide excellent service, but in most years the demand for help is much lighter during the summer. So the first question I have for this upcoming summer is how many of my fellow employees will attend my trainings, visit my department's drop-in hours, or otherwise be in touch as they make the transition.

 

There are several options for dedicated training time:

  • Week-long, hands-on workshops on campus in our Center for Instructional Innovation
  • Scheduled one-on-one training, either on campus or online via video conferencing
  • Drop-in hours

 

In addition, there are some opportunities for online training:

  • Self-paced online training
  • Moderated online training through the @ONE Project, which is a statewide resource for professional development for California's community colleges
  • Webinars by Instructure, which our district agreed to support through this transition year

 

I have a nice room, cloud books for those who do not bring laptops, and some fruit and other goodies. Tomorrow morning my first week-long series for the summer begins, and I am excited to have a large group signed up. Based on those signups I have some lonely weeks ahead this summer, but the first week looks to be filled with people ready to start learning about this new system.