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Comprehensive Course Search Tool (Searching Course Content for a Topic)

Comprehensive Course Search Tool (Searching Course Content for a Topic)

(33)
I always find it useful to search for content using an index or an actual search tool rather than just scrolling through all of the pages one by one to find what I need.  I can see many uses for this:
  1. As a student, I know that a particular topic was covered but I'm not sure where.  I can search the course for the keyword and the page hits will come up.
  2. As an instructor, I want to know where else these students have seen a particular concept.  I can search a bunch of courses for a keyword and the courses and page hits will come up.
  3. As a student, as I am trying to integrate information from multiple lectures within a course or within multiple courses, it would be useful to see where a particular concept has been covered.

 

Tracey

155 Comments
g_r_saward
Community Member

Thanks Laura. And I am interested to see your comment about Google search – I had been wondering whether they would crawl a public canvas course. We use their search appliance internally, and I was wondering about adding the VLE content in.

g_r_saward
Community Member

Whereas I have found memories of a noodle eating poodle :^)

awilliams
Surveyor

Yep, this works pretty good. You can see it in action in our Resource Center for Faculty course.

g_r_saward
Community Member

Great. Thanks Adam, its good to know that it works well :^)

laurakgibbs
Surveyor

Wow, awilliams‌ that looks so nice!!!

tfarmer
Community Member

I am so excited that this is in the Product Radar status! In one given account, we can have almost 300 courses, so searching for one specific item within every single course is a daunting task. The ability to search all courses at once would be fantastic. I look forward to watching this progress!

daryl_scopes
Surveyor II

I would also like to add my voice to this. A search engine would be extremely useful. There could also be the facility to provide keywords, as an option, on the bottom of a page, this would allow for easier management of the search? as well as the potential for the construction of an indexing system.

rebecca_goldswo
Community Member

Would love to see a global site search tool developed! We're currently moving a lot of content from a public-facing website to Canvas and the need for students to be able to search the Canvas site as they would a website is high on our list of needs.

laurakgibbs
Surveyor

Hi  @rebecca_goldswo ‌! This was one of the items voted up at the Project Khaki meeting in the Spring, but it was also one of the Khaki projects that was going to require a really large amount of engineering time. I was in the product group that discussed this with the engineers: apparently building a database-limited search is not so difficult, but if the search is going to include documents and materials UPLOADED to Canvas (the content of all those documents, slideshows, etc. etc. in Files and so on), then it becomes more challenging. Even more so when extended to Discussion search, Assignments search, etc.

I really think Canvas desperately needs a search feature, both for courses and also for the Commons, so I was really glad when this got voted up, but it was also clear that the engineers saw it as a huge project. Just speaking for myself, search was the absolute top #1 feature of all the product ideas discussed at Project Khaki; for anyone to take Canvas seriously as a content platform (and I want to take it seriously!), then search is essential.

I'm not really sure who to ping for Project Khaki updates, but maybe  @scottdennis ‌ knows who we can ask about that.

daryl_scopes
Surveyor II

I understand the potential difficulties, however to start with the addition (when edting a page), of a box for "key Word" search option  would be a really helpful start. I am aware this will require some additional work for us, especially with a lot of pages already built, but it would be a really good start in helping us, help our students, finding content with an internal search engine.

jacoba_behunin
Community Member

Hi all!

I'm with Atomic Jolt (Alliance Partner - Atomic Jolt). You may be interested to know that we released Atomic Search for Canvas just before InstructureCon17.

You can install a free version in your course or subaccount by going to atomicjolt.com/search. Check it out--it's pretty cool and solves that pesky searching problem. 

Feel free to message me or email me directly at jacoba.behunin@atomicjolt.com if you'd like to chat. 

Best,

Jacoba

atomicjolt‌

atomicsearch‌

stevensons
Learner II

I'd love to hear if anyone has tried this out...

v_renolds
Community Member

This is a great idea as the use cases make really clear.  @rseilham ‌ imagine how much a dedicated course search function would also improve the mobile experience for students and instructors using the apps.

rseilham
Community Coach
Community Coach

I agree. Hopefully, this comes to the web because this generally gives the mobile team the APIs to make this happen. 

jacoba_behunin
Community Member

Thanks to Instructure of hosting #CanvasLive last week. Here is a recording of the Atomic Apps for Canvas webinar that includes a demo of Search as well as some of our other tools. Atomic Apps for Canvas Webinar: August 2017 on Vimeo 

More info here: Atomic Apps for Canvas - Atomic Jolt 

Happy day!

Jacoba

v_renolds
Community Member

Thanks Ryan, that is useful to know.

j_keegan
Community Member

Hi,

Since it has been over 12 months since the radar post, I am wondering if this functionality is now being developed?

EDIT: Since asking this question early this morning, I have since found from our CSM this is listed here on Khaki 2017: Priorities & Related Ideas at number 8.

Again, given this has been listed at number 8 since May, 2017 when the post was made by stefaniesanders I am wondering if there has been any further updates on when it will be released?

Thanks,

Josh

Stefanie
Community Team
Community Team

 @j_keegan ‌, our product team will post an update as soon as it is available. The list to which you linked also provides the best estimates, at the time the list was compiled, of the engineering time that would be required to develop each item.

Hildi_Pardo
Community Advocate
Community Advocate

Files, Quizzes, Assignments and even Announcements all have a Search box.  But Pages does not.
We are new to Canvas and brought over three massive, year-long, online world languages courses from our previous LMS and each course has maybe over 1,000 pages -- actually I don't know how many pages there are as there is also no summary at the bottom that says, "You are viewing pages 1-30 out of XXXX pages".  (And if we delete several pages, we have no way of knowing how much progress we've made in cleaning out the course.)  There is no way to easily find a page except to scroll and scroll and scroll from the top and search from A to Z (or click Page Title to start from the end, Z to A).     If I click a page to see the contents, and then decide to delete it or even decide to keep it, and click the "back" button", I am then sent back to the top of the list of Pages and have to Scroll, scroll, scroll again....   It's so slow, cumbersome, inefficient, and we need focus our time on instruction, not reloading a list of Pages and scrolling, scrolling, scrolling....   
(And sometimes a browser (chrome?) won't load the remaining pages past the first screen, and I get a spinning "Loading more" message -- so have to restart the process in Safari).

Please, please, please, Canvas....while you work on the larger, global search, could you add a search for Pages?

Additional note on Pages:  it seems there is no way to know if a Page is actually "in Use" in a course module.   A page can be "published" and actually not be included out in the course in a Module.  We have pages the teacher removed from the Module, but it remains in Pages, which is fine if she wanted to keep it for later use.....but if not, she then has to scroll, scroll, scroll to find that page and delete it.  

Thanks for allowing me to add my 2cents.    🙂

j_keegan
Community Member

 @Hildi_Pardo  I couldn't agree more!