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*Canvas LMS REST API Documentation pages need unique page titles

*Canvas LMS REST API Documentation pages need unique page titles

  This idea has been developed and deployed to Canvas

All Canvas API pages have the same HTML <title> tag: "Canvas LMS REST API Documentation".

e.g.

https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/index.html
https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/accounts.html

https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/gradebook_history.html

https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/grade_change_log.html

 

Using unique titles for each page in a site is a best practice for web usability and SEO, since they help in bookmarking and differentiating multiple tabs.

 

  Comments from Instructure

October 2015 update

Check out the Canvas Production Release Notes (2015-10-10)

 

APIs

Unique Page Titles in API Documentation

The Canvas API documentation includes the subject of the API in the page title.

 

6 Comments
Navigator

Amen.

Not only for the reasons you stated, but when you link to them from Jive and the Canvas Community, you have to go through and change the titles of all the links because they don't indicate where you're ending up and you shouldn't have the same link text on a page going to different locations.

When I took an accessibility course back in the early 2000's, one of the things they were pushing was that the H1 tag match the title of the page. Now it seems that a subset of the title is okay. Either way, the titles on the API documentation can definitely be improved.

It turns out there are are also two H1 tags on the API documentation and that the title matches the generic first one rather than the more useful second one. Again, it was more than a decade ago and I haven't researched it recently, but back then, there was only supposed to be one H1 tag on a page. The generic banner at the top isn't really a H1, it's more like a simulated frame heading (thank you for not using frames) than an actual title to the page. In my opinion, it should not be marked as H1. If you do that, then the other H1, which actually looks like the name of the page, would be a subset of any of the suggestions below.

Here are some possible improvements:

  • Accounts API
  • Accounts API Documentation
  • Accounts REST API Documentation
  • Canvas LMS Accounts API
  • Canvas LMS Accounts API Documentation
  • Canvas LMS Accounts REST API
  • Canvas LMS Accounts REST API Documentation
  • Canvas LMS REST Documentation - Accounts API

I personally like either the 2nd or 5th. It seems unnecessary to state it's the REST documentation unless there is some other kind of API out there. The Canvas LMS REST API seems like a lawyer said make sure it has our name in there,

Community Team
Community Team

admin_vogl​ & james@richland.edu

Thank you so much for your detailed posts.  We agree that this documentation needs attention, which is why we are not opening it for voting as a feature.  This issue will be prioritized and addressed internally.  Thank you again for calling attention to this.

Community Team
Community Team

This idea was developed and is currently on beta!  How do I access the Canvas beta environment?

Find more information in the Canvas Beta Release Notes (2015-09-28) APIs: Unique Page Titles in API Documentation.

Navigator

rcarney@instructure.com​,

Woohoo!

At first this made no sense, so I thought I might share for others who were equally in the dark. Other people might have been aware, if so, then sorry for sounding ignorant, but I really was.

I thought there was a (singular) place for the API Documentation: https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/

But it turns out that there is an version of the API documentation available through each of our instances, including the test and beta. It took me 3 years of using Canvas to find that one out, so thank you.

For those visiting "the" API documentation, in order to see the updated ones with the titles, you'll need to do as Renee said and visit the beta instance: https://canvas.beta.instructure.com/doc/api/

Sure enough, the name is there at the beginning of the title. "Assignments - Canvas LMS REST API Documentation"

Long, but at least it has the name of the API itself in there.

However, I would recommend against linking to the beta instance when referring to API documentation within the Community unless you're specifically referring to something in beta.

Community Team
Community Team

Check out the Canvas Production Release Notes (2015-10-10)

APIs

Unique Page Titles in API Documentation

The Canvas API documentation includes the subject of the API in the page title.

Community Team
Community Team

ROI.png

Thank you to admin_vogl for submitting this idea, as well as, james@richland.edu for your contributions. Your investment in this idea helped refine a feature which is now part of the Canvas! Smiley Happy