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Add rich-content editor to Conversations

Add rich-content editor to Conversations

(164)
As a user, I would like to be able to use the rich-content editor to compose messages in the Conversations inbox. This would enable me to create Conversations that are on par, formatting- and content-wise, with Announcements. (Students seem to read Conversations messages more diligently than Announcements.)

 

transferred from the old Community

Originally posted by: Mia Nolan

Special thanks for contributions by: Stefanie Sanders

207 Comments
michelli
Community Member

@xyzGem you are absolutely right! That is the way to go but my university, at least, will probably balk at that even if it was possible. They are trying to drive me away from my email of choice because they want to integrate everything. I am now forced to check my email in three places before I can be sure I've seen it all. The Canvas inbox is also very slow. My copies of emails to the class don't appear in it for hours, or sometimes even days. It is impossible to manage.

 

VHDL2STA
New Member

I had also submitted a feature request that the Canvas email environment include the Canvas Rich Content Editor.

I also submitted a feature request for the following email capability: Every course has unique projects and activities that may require email communications between the teacher and the students. Files and sub-files are needed to keep emails organized into course project and activity correspondences. Otherwise teachers will have a rough time finding specific project/activity emails in the jungle of emails that are sent during the whole semester.

Summary:

(1) The Canvas email environment must incorporate the Rich Content Editor

(2) The Canvas email environment must incorporate files and sub-files

michelli
Community Member

@VHDL2STA I agree with you and support your idea. One of the several reasons I try not to use Canvas conversations is the lack of folders and subfolders.

yrodri9
New Member

Please, add rich text to the emails/inbox tool. We really need to be able to add highlights, bold text, and images to the emails! Thanks!!!

michelli
Community Member

@yrodri9 Exactly! Teachers need this! I am forced to paste unicode emojis in for list numbers, just to give the eye some landmarks in a set of instructions! Tooo slooooow!

Here's where to get them:

Regards to all

MartinSchmidt
New Member

It would be nice to have formatting in the email section in Canvas. I would like to underline, make bullet points, paste a screenshot, etc, but I can't seem to do that in the Canvas shell email.  

michelli
Community Member

Hello All

The first post in this thread is dated 2015! Normal formatting and organizing facilities in email is not something we should ever have had to ask for. Seven years later we are still struggling over this. When you think how pressed for time teachers and professors are, and how Canvas confuses us with its relentless uniformity, you are looking at a huge swathe of unnecessary stress. I ask the Canvas developers: please - don't waste any more time waiting for an upvote! Just do it! It should have been there from the beginning!

PS - I suggest licensing Thunderbird!

 

kikimax
New Member

@michelli et All,

Yes, 7 years of continuously suggesting, asking, BEGGING Instructure to CORRECT this (since it's a massive flaw and mistake on their part to begin with) and yet nothing! The feeling I had already for many years is that all these tools they "supposedly" provide for feedback, this Conversation Board and Forum, are simply for show. We didn't have ONE Project Manager EVER chiming in and giving us ANY sort of answer or timeline. It's been also quite clear to many of us who have been monitoring this discussion that Canvas-Instructure leadership simply doesn't give a s**t about us, the actual users as long as they're getting their monies from our institutions... What a sham! What a joke! I personally lost hope long time ago this feature will ever be implemented. I MISS BLACKBOARD VERY MUCH!! 😡

michelli
Community Member

@kikimax and all - yes, I agree and feel pretty futile about it myself - and yet the potential is so clear that it's also tragic that they don't care about the people in the trenches. My own thought, every time I run into this kind of problem (and there are several) is that this was clearly NOT designed by people who have ever taught. They're working on stereotypical false memories of what they experienced as students and it never occurs to them that the more they tie our hands, the LESS good job we can do.

Grrr.r.r.r.r.....

VHDL2STA
New Member

Possible Explanation for Rich Content Editor (RCE) Inconsistency Regarding the Canvas Calendar and Canvas Mail utilities

The Rich Content Editor CAN be used in the Canvas Calendar but the Rich Content Editor Cannot be used in the Canvas mail utility. This inconsistency/discrepancy suggests that two different programmers were tasked for these two different Canvas constructs. If the same programmer would be working on both the Canvas Calendar and the Canvas Mail utility then this single  programmer would be able to design how to call the same RCE subroutine for both the Canvas Calendar and the Canvas Mail utilities.

As an aside there are MANY (!!!) excellent applications of using RCE in the Canvas Calendar, some of which its programmer may not have even anticipated.

michelli
Community Member

Sorry to keep on and on about this, but it really is important! Does anyone happen to know any of the developers and can they please go and ... shake them ... and then explain kindly why this should have been put right at the first query?  It is not a feature: it is a basic expectation.

Meanwhile @VHDL2STA you are probably right about the different developers, but that ANY developer would not think to put RCE into an email (or grading!!!) component defies comprehension. We are not in the 1990s!

VHDL2STA
New Member

Michelli,

Let's hope that when word processing capability is finally added to the Canvas mail utility the word processing "improvement" does not follow the history of word processors.

I remember WordPerfect with all of its cryptic keyboard commands. Hopefully when the Canvas mail utility is enhanced with word processing capabilities its programmer will bypass WordPerfect cryptic keyboard commands and go directly to an icon-driven WYSIWYG Rich Content Editor capability. 😊

michelli
Community Member

@VHDL2STA - I'd be glad if they'd just put in the rich text editing capacity we have for making pages and assignments, and announcements. Can it really be that difficult?

I think we need to skip this going-nowhere process. The Chief Product officer for Canvas is Mitch Benson and the CEO as of last year is Steve Daly. Both have LinkedIn profiles according to Instructure's "Leadership" page: https://www.instructure.com/about/leadership.

Perhaps it is time to message them directly.

 

kikimax
New Member

@michelli et all,

The persons I recommend reaching out to would be Steve Townsend, the SVP of Engineering (https://www.linkedin.com/in/stevenptownsend/) , the other being Roshan Popal, the CIO (https://www.linkedin.com/in/roshanpopal/) They are the ones involved and supervising the internal development efforts. This, most likely, would be a better bet, to reach out to the people who supervise the tech rather than going to the CEO/COO. Just my 2 centavos. Still, no matter what, and I am agreeing with you, it may be the time to start complaining all way up to the "gods" since the "angels" do not seem to care. 😖

michelli
Community Member

@kikimax thank you!

I'll take your advice on this. I'm going to write to them both. I do suggest, though, that all of us write individually to these two. We should stick to the same topic (the rich text editor in email and grading comments). If we all do this, we might get their attention. Then, when we've got this, we can encourage them to deal with some other stuff that should be basic!

Best to all

judd_curran
New Member

I think the first time I created the post about the rich content editor in email, and some other obvious improvements was in 2018.  Think about the incredible waste of time since then of everyone having to use this failed system to try and beg someone to pay attention with no results, and the negative impact all the while of less-effective means of communicating with our students. 

I'm done using this facade of improvement.  I suggest faculty in California Higher Ed. start passing Academic Senate resolutions to recommend to the state chancellors office and ASCCC major reform in our ability to get quick fixes on obvious deficiencies.  California higher ed. is a BIG Instructure/Canvas account, with lots of leverage.  I recommend that we stop wasting our time here.

michelli
Community Member

@judd_curran -- Oh YES!  Let's all do that! Wisconsin is a big client of instructure too. I haven't written anything to anyone yet, owing to the massive time-waste imposed by this clunky system and my hundred-plus students with needs. So we could strategize.

What about this:

  1. Use this thread to compile a list of basic things we should never have had to ask for
  2. All of us use this list to write to our Academic Senates and (I still feel) Instructure
  3. All of us check at the end of our semesters to see if anything at all has happened at either Senate level or Instructure level.
  4. Then if nothing has been done, let's all of us write to them again.
  5. And report results (or no results) back to this thread, so we keep on moving forward
  6. And do it all again at the beginning and end of each semester till something happens!

I seem to have more than two cents' worth - but, oh, let's do this!

Thanks Judd Curran. Great idea you had!

danac1
New Member
 
danac1
New Member

I would like to have the option to add memes, images to the Canvas email.

chesnutj
New Member

My faculty would love to have the rich text editor enable in the compose a message of the inbox. the ability to add an image would improve communication with students.