[People] Sort Students in People List: Course

@people list is alphabetical by last names, which is not helpful. Please add sorting function by "First Name", "Section", "last Activity" and "Total Activity". All other tabular lists should be sort-able as well.

Add Group to the columns and Sort by group is needed as well. Jan 26, 2018 @kristine Hansen @dale Anne Davidson

Profile Picture Name Login ID SIS ID Section Role Last Activity Total Activity


The sorting function has been available in Proctorio Exam Results for a while.

When will the Canvas development team pay their attention to this as a production priority because an overall sorting function is required for ALL tabular lists in Canvas!!

Community Member

I think there should be an option to sort by first or last name. Personally, I much prefer sorting by last name. When I enter final grades into the school grading system, the names will always be sorted by last name.

I find it frustrating that the names are listed first name first, but then sorted by last name. I would prefer the names display in last name, first name order: "Smith, John" rather than "John Smith". Students often go by first names that have no relationship with the name in their official school record (particularly Asian students). When I enter a grade it is more helpful for me to go by the last name and then (if necessary) look at the first name to see which "Kim" or "Smith" I am looking for.

So I guess my preferred solution would an option to display names in last name first or first name first order: "Smith, John" or "John Smith". Then if the sorting is done by the name column, it would sort based on the displayed name.

Community Champion

 @Renee_Carney , is it possible that the 100 vote limit is not as relevant because there are SO MANY ideas here that have passed the 100 votes?   The bar had to be raised?  I have been away a couple months and when I came back it seems the same top 40 ideas are all still at the top of the voting list. . .

Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni

 @don_bryn , when we reconfigured Canvas Studio in March 2017, the 100-vote threshold was replaced by a percentile measurement. You can read more about how ideas are prioritized here: How does the feature idea process work? (under "How long are ideas open for vote?"). This blog post goes into details about the archiving and selection process: Ideas: Archiving Anew 

Community Team
Community Team

Hi Don, the links that Stefanie provided you with help explain the process!  

I'll add a little more detail on the specific arbitrary number of 100!  Three years ago, when we transitioned from our old community platform to our new, we had an ideation process and it was rare that many ideas would gather over 100 votes.  I'm sure there were many factors, with a couple being; the older community was more difficult to search and sort ideas and there were much fewer users in Canvas, and even less that leveraged community.  The number of 100 votes was arbitrarily picked, guessing that it would work with our projected growth!  We're happy to say that community use grew beyond our projections, and continues to exceed them!  If you calculate what 100 votes means in comparison to the total number of users in Canvas (HUGE), or even the total number of Community members (A LITTLE LESS HUGE, BUT STILL HUGE), it's not even 1% of the total population.  Because of this, we let go of the arbitrary 100, and now look at the votes based on the overall activity of community in ideas over a period of time.

Does that help?

Community Novice

In all other CMSs that I've used (even the horrible D2L) I could always easily extract a roster and import it into Excel.  I totally agree with the other comments that users have left.  Canvas needs to arrange the student's last names, first names, and middle initials, in separate columns that can be exported to a spreadsheet.  I have written my own grading spreadsheet in Excel, which is much more user-friendly that the one available in Canvas. My work-around is to have one of the analysts send a query to the university's data base and down load my rosters (about 270 students) into an xls file which is easy to copy and paste into my grading spreadsheet.  While were looking to improve Canvas ... how about drag and drop capability for adding files?

#Improve Canvas roster format, add drag and drop

Community Contributor

What was old and cold is now new and hot.

Community Contributor

Sorry to burst your bubble on this, but Canvas no longer work on a minimum of 100 votes. They now evaluate the development of ideas on league tables.

Community Contributor

I just found this feature request and am a little late to add much to the conversation that already has not been said.  Being able to sort the People list by any of the columns, of course, makes sense.  And the ability to easily export this information, since some of it I believe is not available anywhere else (Activity Time) is also important.

I find a few odd things.  This feature request started back in January, nearly 8 months ago, however, I am still able to vote.  It appears the documentation seems to say that feature requests are open for 6 months?  What am I not understanding?

Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni

 @richard-jerz , the How long are ideas open for vote? section of https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-14903-75187841183 holds the answer to your question.

Community Coach
Community Coach

 @richard-jerz , something I currently do so I can sort the People list columns is use the following Canvancement - Course Roster Enhancements. My recommendation is to check it out and see if it can help you!