Ability to Save and Copy from Frequently Used Comments in Speedgrader/DocViewer

This idea has been developed and deployed to Canvas

For more information, please read through the  Canvas Release Notes (2021-06-19).

We're aware that there are two parts to this idea. The "Speedgrader" piece of the request is complete; the idea remains open for DocViewer annotations comments.

It would be a great timesaver for writing instructors and anyone else making many of the same comments to students on assignments to save and store comments in SpeedGrader/Crocodoc DocViewer as one is able to do in Turnitin's Grademark feature. This feature would help SpeedGrader really live up to its name, too.


This has been a request since August 2012: Ability to Save and Copy from Frequently Used Comments in Crocodoc : Help Center

New Member

This is a serious game changer for me! The ability to give extensive feedback in a shorter period of time is significant for student learning. Thank you!

New Member

I agree that this should be a feature for grading discussions and doc viewer.

For discussions, I need to be able to pinpoint my comments. 

As many of us have, I have quite a bit grading (this semester I have 95 students, posting 3-4 discussion/assignments per week and I don't have a TA or GA) where some 40% of the comments are repetitious.

However, I can't help to wonder that if the idea it was originally posted in 2012 (if I read that correctly)  reopened/re-created in 2015 (this post), and yesterday I submitted a new posting (I didn't find this posting prior, my apologies) give me pause as to what is taking so long.

New Member

I'd like to suggest that the annotation comment box stay open until you navigate to the next annotation.


When using speedgrader to grade a document using annotation, once you move the mouse away from "Leave a Comment box" it automatically closes. The current configuration defeats the use of an independent clipboard manager.


In the past (last year?) I simply opened the annotation comment box, navigated to my clipboard manager clicked a selection and it was inserted into the comment box.


Today I select an annotation, (placeholder), start a comment, go to my clipboard manager, copy, go back to the placeholder, reopen the comment box, then paste.


Reasoning when grading some comments are redundant, for example 


Unfortunately, your reference (s) are incorrect or incomplete. References should have author last, first initial, (date). Article Title, Site Name and Retrieved from http..... please check out:  Owl at Purdue APA  https://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/560/1/ for more details


I felt that you could have contributed more to the discussion and provided some examples 

I felt that you could have elaborated with citations (and references) in developing your argument. 

Thank you, a well thought out contribution to the main discussion and value-added response to a peer. 

Which platform or Operating System (Microsoft or Apple, Linux)? Which browser Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Explorer (and which release level), for example, Win 7 64 bit Chrome Version 62.0.3202.94 (Official Build) (64-bit). Are you running 32 bit or 64 bit systems? If Microsoft office which version 2013 or 2016/365.

New Member

Yes! This would make grading the hundreds of papers where students make the same or similar mistakes SO much more efficient. Also, if it could come with some kind of analytics where you can see which marks you use the most in which classes, which assignments, etc, then you could gain a powerful tool to see what you need to focus on more in class instruction time.

Community Contributor

Until people start leaving Canvas there is no incentive for them to address these concerns. Right now they are probably still trying to address the concerns of those districts and states who haven't adopted Canvas yet and making sure those features are addressed, before they help current paying users who might be reluctant to start over. 

 @clonghb ‌

New Member

This is the ONLY reason I am not grading in SPEED GRADER - I love being able to save comment sets in TURNITIN (I save a comment set per class and per assignment) so I don't have to write the same thing over and over. If SPEED GRADER added this function, I would be 100% CANVAS. 

New Member

We really need to be able to reuse comments.  We used to have this feature in another program and it saves so much time.

Community Member

^^What Elizabeth Scarbrough said^^

Turnitin has had this feature for more than a decade. It's called QuickMarks. The instructor has a library, and they can create multiple individual QuickMark sets within that library for each assignment, or any other theme (organization, development, argumentation, etc.). Turnitin also provides comment banks (mechanics, grammar, usage, etc.). You can switch from one set to another seamlessly as you grade. Of course you can also add free-written comments.

I'm astonished there are "down" votes on this feature. I'm also surprised every LMS platform on the market doesn't already have this feature. It seems like a no-brainer. Copying and pasting or writing the same comment on multiple assignments is cumbersome, not speedy. My comment sets are tied to my rubric metrics, which are connected to my course outcomes. Clearly mapping feedback to course outcomes without comment storage capability is also more cumbersome for instructors. 

Community Participant

Might I add when this feature is developed, having quick comments added within discussion boards would be fantastic as well.

New Member

Good evening Hi I from Monterrey Mexico and I want to learn, so how can use the canvas page 

New Member

So tired of repeating the same comments on on responses that all the kids get wrong.

Community Participant

I'm using Annotate Pro to save comments. It runs as an add-on in Chrome and plays well with Canvas. They also have a product that runs in Word. HUGE time saver! Transform writing skills with faster feedback and deliberate practice | 11trees 


Community Contributor

I am also using Annotate Pro.  I started using it for grading and have expanded to use it for storing discussion follow-up posts and announcements.  Any place in Canvas where there is a rich text editor, I can pull in comments stored and categorized in Annotate Pro.  I can then edit them to better fit the specific context or tailor them in any way, but it does allow me to store enhanced explanations and information that I like to provide students "just in time" in response to a post or as an announcement. I am a major believer in Annotate Pro.

Community Contributor

Still very interested in this concept! Huge interest on Univ of Wisconsin-Madison campus.

Would be a great way to establish a standard language for multiple TAs grading assignments for large-enrollment courses.

Please, keep pressing this issue forward.

Community Member

Thanks for sharing, Laura. Annotate Pro looks like a good stop-gap method. I agree with  @cliff_cunningha ‌, though that the ability to embed standard language directly into the Canvas Speedgrader is the ideal. 

Is there anything else we all can do to keep this request visible?

New Member

If Speedgrader were like Turnitin.com- with the ability to use and create new comments, I would use Speedgrader much more often.

New Member

Frankly Ann, I don't know what else we can do. This idea dates all the way back to August 2012 and is currently the 6th most popular (net votes) feature idea across all idea stages. Yet there's no sign of any movement on Instructure's part. Annotate Pro appears to be a good workaround, but this situation doesn't reflect well on Instructure. Campuses invest considerable resources in Canvas, yet individual faculty are supposed to buy their own add-on in order to have this important and widely sought functionality? That's not acceptable IMO.

New Member

The idea of being able to pull frequently used comments into documents would be a great addition to the Canvas features.  I teach English I and almost every assignment requires students to write a contstructed response.  Most all responses require direct textual evidence.  This helps use support our literature standard 9-10.1.  The comment I write the most is "you need direct textual evidence."  The addition of this feature would save lots of time in grading and would allow students to get their feedback in a more timely manner.  

New Member

Our faculty have requested this a few times. It would definitely make the platform more user friendly and would help them provide feedback efficiently. Some seem to be accustomed to this functionality from working in other LMSs and potentially perceive this as a downside to Canvas.

New Member

I wish they would just give us what we want and not make us vote on improvements. I never look at this voting stuff and I am pretty sure I support most suggestions that make canvas easier to use.