We just implemented Canvas this summer and from an academic standpoint it's going great. We're looking to continue student and faculty/staff engagement with Canvas by creating a non-academics aspect of Canvas. I'm looking for folks who have done (or attempted ) to do this and are willing to share their wisdom! Would also love/greatly appreciate any screenshots, examples, access to others' sites who have done this at their schools so I can use them as examples.
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We are using groups in the same way you are. Have you found a way that the leader you set for each group can add students are you doing that at the admin level? Also, the only way I have found to experiment with a group as an admin is to add myself to the group as a leader so I can access the group. Otherwise, as admin, I have not found a way to access the groups otherwise. Thanks for any help you can provide.
This currently has to be done at the Admin level. "Leaders" of a group cannot add other group members on their own. You don't have to add yourself to a group in order to view it. In your Administrative Pages of Canavs, go to "Users" >> "View User Groups", and then click on the cog wheel next to the group name. Choose "Visit Group Homepage". You can visit any group this way...even if you're not a member or "Leader" of the group.
Thanks, Chris! That will be much easier to access!
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@chofer I am trying to convince out administrators to use Canvas for organizations/clubs/and committees instead of purchasing another product such as sharepoint. We just adopted Canvas this semester and faculty have embraced the new LMS pretty well.
Is there any advantage to creating groups instead of simply creating new courses?
@jal18 I am attempting to convince my admin to do just this. Is there any additional functionality you can share in regards to using Canvas in this way? Some want to purchase another product to use but I strongly feel from a faculty point of view utilizing the same tool holds some distinct advantages.
Well, if you create a course shell instead of a group, you're going to get everything associated with a course...including Assignments, Quizzes, and the Gradebook. So, I guess the question is...would you be using those things? If not, Groups is probably the way to go. But, if you want to set up a survey in your group, then you'd need to use a Canvas course shell...unless you created the survey outside of Canvas in something like Google Docs and them embedded the survey in a page within your Group...which is entirely possible, too. It all depends on how you intend on using the toolsets available for Groups or Courses.
The more platforms you use the more complex and costly it gets. You can use groups within an existing shell, but may be less complex/confusing juts to create more shells. Seriously, it takes tech people a few minutes, SJSU is SUPER slow in general but usually I get a new shell the same day.
We've used Canvas for lots of non-academic things, one of which is a "classroom portfolio" Classroom Information for Saint Michaels College which is a public course. With access to the portfolio, adjunct faculty, who may not be on campus before their classes, are able to look at their assigned rooms and plan ahead (or make changes if necessary). We also use an in-house Canvas class for our IT student staff training, as a repository for information about all the IT areas that is updated every semester and used as a reference. Our campus MakerSpace has two Canvas courses - one for its student staff with documentation and quizzes for certification on equipment, and another outward-facing course for students who just use the space and want a place to post pictures of their creations. Finally, using a Canvas course for Canvas training is the best way we've found to show people how the different features work.
Not to be a dissenting voice, but our institution has actually moved in the opposite direction. We've signed an agreement with Box and encouraging faculty to use Box or similar cloud storage to facilitate non-academic collaboration. At our institution many of the requests for non-academic shells tend to be for the file storage and not really the full use of Canvas. The big draw for a non-academic shell is that everyone knows how to get into Canvas. By using the Box integration people still have the convenience of logging into Canvas and interacting with the files, but the actual system underlying it actually fits the use case a little better. Power users can then leverage features found in Box but not Canvas.
None of this is to say that any of the above approaches are wrong or bad. I just wanted to give a different perspective.
Sorry if this is a bad place for this question- We are setting up (and currently testing) a training course using Canvas for our student employees to take and refer to while they are in their position with our Division. Some issues we are trying to work around and haven't found any success in are:
Currently we have the structure as:
Thank you in advance to any advice given!