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Heather-Ryan
Community Participant

Deleting student submission?

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Hi all,

We have a student who submitted a Peer Review for a group project that everyone in the group can see her review. From email with the instructor, it appears that she submitted in the wrong place, submitting it within her group. When the group goes to files -- submissions, they can see her docx

We cannot figure out any way for her, the student to delete the file, the instructor cannot delete the file, and we (Canvas Admins) are unable to delete the file.

Any suggestions?

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1 Solution

Accepted Solutions
kblack
Community Champion

Hi  @Heather-Ryan  Welcome (very belatedly!) to the Canvas Community. I see you joined us back in January 2018, but this appears to be your first posting here.  And you ask an excellent question that will, I'm sorry to say, have an answer that you will not like.

Group file submissions--and whether it was for a peer review assignment or not is irrelevant, but rather because it was for a group assignment--are locked by default.  In fact, you can see the padlock icon on the Submissions folder in your screen capture.  If you check out the student online lesson How do I submit an assignment on behalf of a group? in the blue area at the top, you will see this (bold type added by me):

Any attachments added as part of a graded assignment submission are also copied to your group files but are not counted against your user quota. However, once the file has been uploaded as a submission, you cannot delete the file. If you upload a file from your computer, the file is stored in the group Submissions folder. However, please note that if you submit a file that was previously uploaded to your group files, the file is stored in your Submissions folder.

And, as you have found out, the "you cannot delete" even applies to us administrators!  And while a student can "move" the file to their personal files area, as outlined in How do I move and organize files as a student? Canvas' definition of "move" here is incorrect.  The file is copied, but will not be "moved" in the case of group file submissions.

It has long been a bit of a bone of contention for many Community users that student submissions cannot be deleted AT ALL in any format, be it a group submission, a regular assignment submission, or anywhere else.  You can read some of the sentiments expressed in this Feature Idea:  https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4394-delete-submissions-by-students .

The only way to try to remove it is by contacting Canvas support directly, I'm afraid; I cannot think of any other way around this off-hand, though perhaps there MAY be an API-based workaround, though judging from the comments in that feature idea the answer is likely "no."  I might add that--contrary to some statements in that same Feature Idea--that the nuclear option of deleting the assignment altogether will NOT work in the case of a group-based assignment like this, at least not based on the experiment that I just tried running now while trying to answer your question.  It indeed seems that this is one thing that even an administrator can not solve!  Again, you may just have to contact Canvas Support or live with the fact that the file will be there.

Not the answer you are looking for, I'm sure, but I hope this helps explain it a bit, Heather.

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3 Replies
kblack
Community Champion

Hi  @Heather-Ryan  Welcome (very belatedly!) to the Canvas Community. I see you joined us back in January 2018, but this appears to be your first posting here.  And you ask an excellent question that will, I'm sorry to say, have an answer that you will not like.

Group file submissions--and whether it was for a peer review assignment or not is irrelevant, but rather because it was for a group assignment--are locked by default.  In fact, you can see the padlock icon on the Submissions folder in your screen capture.  If you check out the student online lesson How do I submit an assignment on behalf of a group? in the blue area at the top, you will see this (bold type added by me):

Any attachments added as part of a graded assignment submission are also copied to your group files but are not counted against your user quota. However, once the file has been uploaded as a submission, you cannot delete the file. If you upload a file from your computer, the file is stored in the group Submissions folder. However, please note that if you submit a file that was previously uploaded to your group files, the file is stored in your Submissions folder.

And, as you have found out, the "you cannot delete" even applies to us administrators!  And while a student can "move" the file to their personal files area, as outlined in How do I move and organize files as a student? Canvas' definition of "move" here is incorrect.  The file is copied, but will not be "moved" in the case of group file submissions.

It has long been a bit of a bone of contention for many Community users that student submissions cannot be deleted AT ALL in any format, be it a group submission, a regular assignment submission, or anywhere else.  You can read some of the sentiments expressed in this Feature Idea:  https://community.canvaslms.com/ideas/4394-delete-submissions-by-students .

The only way to try to remove it is by contacting Canvas support directly, I'm afraid; I cannot think of any other way around this off-hand, though perhaps there MAY be an API-based workaround, though judging from the comments in that feature idea the answer is likely "no."  I might add that--contrary to some statements in that same Feature Idea--that the nuclear option of deleting the assignment altogether will NOT work in the case of a group-based assignment like this, at least not based on the experiment that I just tried running now while trying to answer your question.  It indeed seems that this is one thing that even an administrator can not solve!  Again, you may just have to contact Canvas Support or live with the fact that the file will be there.

Not the answer you are looking for, I'm sure, but I hope this helps explain it a bit, Heather.

Heather-Ryan
Community Participant

Thanks so much for the message  @kblack  and warm welcome! I have been an adjunct instructor teaching with Canvas since the state moved to Canvas in 2011 and recently added a part-time position with the college as Canvas faculty support & training, so you will probably hear from me more often Smiley Happy Not the answer we were hoping, but it helps explain the situation to the instructor.

kblack
Community Champion

Happy to help, Heather....as is the rest of this Community.  Come on in and look around....there are a LOT of good people here in the Community who are always willing to lend a helping hand!