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How does an LTI Tool Provider Create Accounts and Roster a Canvas K12 District?

Hi Canvas Dev community,

I've been digging for a while now and haven't come up with a satisfactory answer; please excuse the question if it's naive. We're an edtech vendor, Flocabulary, building an LTI compliant Canvas external tool for our Learning Tool. We've gotten to the point where it is possible to successfully SSO from a dev Canvas environment into our application via an LTI External tool implementation. Our next step will be to create teachers accounts at their correct schools within a K12 district, create courses/sections and roster students in the correct sections for those teachers. I've seen the post about LIS v2.0, which is under development, but is there a reasonable way to accomplish this with some of the LIS variables included in LTI v1.2​?

Alternatively, is there a better/different method all together where we could pull the SIS from a different Canvas API? And, would that be authorized through the External Tool configurations, or would we need additional configurations to setup those with our customers? Separately, we're working on SIS imports, but if possible we would like to keep the LMS integration implementations self-contained and not need to implement the LTI External Tool and connect to the SIS imports.





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As far as I know, Instructure (the company behind Canvas) does not have any products or services that would share a school's roster to a third party. Canvas can import roster files and automatically provision user accounts within Canvas, but Canvas will not export that roster for another service to consume. There are companies that specialize in sharing rosters between a school and third parties. Some of these companies include ClassLink, Clever, EduTone, and SchoolMessenger. A school can export a set of roster files from its Student Information System (SIS) and upload those files to these companies which in turn sell access to these lists to other parties. Alternatively, a school could export roster files from its SIS and upload those files directly to each third party. This would allow the third party to provision user accounts for students and teachers without having to go through a middleman.

As far as the Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) standards go, I do not believe they have any methods for transmitting an entire school roster. LTI limits its transactions to identifying the user who is behind an LTI handshake. IMS Global has developed a separate specification for sharing roster files. You can learn more about the OneRoster specification here: