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Manual Account Type Creation

Manual Account Type Creation

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Canvas allows schools to designate account types (student, teacher, observer, etc.) when uploaded bulk accounts. However, there is no such ability when you have to add one individually. You have to add a teacher as a teacher to an existing course, for instance, to make them a teacher. This is really silly, and a simple dropdown should be included to let you designate the account type as it is created.

9 Comments
Community Team
Community Team

rrodgers@judsonisd.org

Thanks for sharing this idea. In a CSV bulk upload, "account type" refers to whether the user will be enrolled in a specific sub-account; that's not the same as a role.

Roles in Canvas do not attach to a user. Roles are created when a user is enrolled in a course, so a user can be enrolled as a student in one course and a teacher in another. As such, our members will need to know more in order to evaluate this idea.

Could you elaborate on the configuration of the report that allows the admin to designate the role (not the "account type") in a bulk upload? According to our documentation, the SIS bulk upload includes fields for users, accounts, terms, courses, sections, enrollments, and logins: How do I format CSV text files for uploading SIS data into a Canvas account? 

Thanks again.

Surveyor

I might be mistaken. However, when we upload, teachers have teacher role by either assignment or default. They can immediately access Commons, create new courses, etc. When we manually create them, they are students by default, meaning these features are unavailable until we go in and assign them as teachers to a course to give them teacher rights and access. It would be VERY helpful to just be able to select this when creating the account instead of going through the additional step.

Community Team
Community Team

rrodgers@judsonisd.org

Are you seeking functionality that is broadly along the lines of this micro LTI, except built into Canvas rather than available as an add-on?

Surveyor

Hi, Stefanie,

So, in the CSV upload for Enrollments, there is the option to set the Role. We did so and selected Teacher--worked like a charm. Teachers could login and create practice courses and kick the tires a bit. New users, added individually, though--you have to add them to some mock course as a teacher to establish that role. I simply think Canvas should include a drop-down with teacher, ta, student, observer to the manual account creation tool.

Community Team
Community Team

rrodgers@judsonisd.org

Your process is consistent with how roles are added in Canvas: a user's role in Canvas is always associated with their enrollment (with the exception of account admins), so thanks for confirming that you were using the Enrollments CSV to achieve this; the Users CSV alone creates generic users and doesn't include a role field. 

Now that we've cleared that up, we can move this idea forward as a request to allow admins to manually create a course and add a user to it in the appropriate role as part of the manual course creation process. Would you edit the idea to remove the first few sentences so that the idea description accurately describes the existing functionality?

Thanks for working with us on this, Randy.

Surveyor

We still aren't eye-to-eye, Stefanie. I really hate trying to do this in a forum like this. I don't want to manually create a course and add users in specific roles--that already exists. I want to manually create a new user and give them the teacher role, as if I had uploaded them with a csv file. 

Community Team
Community Team

Hey rrodgers@judsonisd.org

Sorry about the back and forth. We just want to make sure your idea is clear for other users that are reading it. That being said, I think you're being super clear it's us with the fuzzy brain because we're trying to put it within the realm of how the software works now.

I double checked our documentation and how the uploads works (it's been a few years since my admin days 😉 ).    My understanding is that when bulk user accounts are created they can be created as stand alone accounts without any roles or enrollments, or they can be created attached to enrollments which gives them an immediate role (or roles - they could be a student in once course and an instructor in another).  This is similar to how users are created individually.  They can be created in the people tab and stand alone accounts without roles, or they can created within a course (people tab) and given a role within that course.  

The reason I'm zeroed in on roles here is that my understanding is that without an enrollment there is no role (or set of permissions) attached to the account.  

Please let me know if my understanding is not correct.  If it is correct, this is why Stefanie is asking so many questions. If roles are only attached to enrollments then a user must have an enrollment before any role can be assigned.  

Surveyor

Your understanding is correct. I think it would be very helpful to include a field allowing a role to be designated without having to assign them to a course. At this point, I have a generic, empty course, and I go in and add them as a teacher after creating their accounts. This isn't a course they will even be interacting with, just one to make them have the role. It adds an extra step that I feel could be eliminated. 

Surveyor

RRodgers,

But what if we need to enroll that teacher as a student into a course, such as a faculty training course?  And they have a pre-designated "role" of Teacher?  This is why Canvas assigns at the enrollment level.

It would be nice to have some kind of concept of both, for the sake of sorting/searching for users, but I also get why they have it at the level they do.

Perhaps something like "Primary Role" at the Person level.