Display Names for Students

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Community Contributor

Hey folks! Do any of y'all know exactly where a display name will actually show up? The Canvas Guide documentation I found reads "Display Name is what other users will see in discussions, announcements, etc." But that's, well, pretty darn unhelpful, as it doesn't detail the places other users will not see their display name. Smiley Sad

Some context/details! I'm looking for information about what other students see when a student has a different display name than their full/sortable name in various places in Canvas. I know what teachers see is different, and that's alright.

My testing today shows that if the People tab is enabled, students will not see the display name, but rather the full name. So now I'm wondering about other places, like student Groups, or the Canvas Inbox.

Does anyone have any experience with this? Where does and doesn't the display name show up? We get requests to change display names fairly frequently, and these are often for students who are transitioning but can't yet legally change their names (for a thousand different valid reasons, safety utmost among them), which turns this into an equity issue if we have no way to fully protect these students online.

If you're aware of these issues and have devised some magical solution, I'd be happy to hear that, too!

All the best,
Danielle Casey

eLearning Program Coordinator

Lower Columbia College

1 Solution
Community Contributor

Did some testing and answered my own question: Display Name does show up in student Groups and the Canvas Inbox, but if anyone knows of any other spots we should be aware of, please let me know! The People tab not working with display names is a major bummer.

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