Request extension feature for students


With the move to remote learning and the pandemic causing more uncertainty for students I have more students than normal requesting assignment extensions. While it’s totally possible to go in and make the manual edits to extend assignments it’s time consuming. Could students get a button that allows them to request an extension on an assignment or other assessment. It would prompt them to state the length of extension requested. Then it would show up on the instructor notifications and the instructor could click like approve, decline or modify? It would make extension granting more streamlined and easier to provide. 

Community Participant

Instructors would love this.

Community Novice

Love this idea!

Community Member

My two cents…

A one-click option is a good idea but, its purpose and use must be clear. 

1) It must emphasize the extension is not a course extension.

2) Offer the options to select one or more assignments to include in the request (see #4)

3) Include a “Date request picker” that prevents selecting a date beyond the course end date.  (see #4)

4) Provide an interface that allows the instructor to set up extension requests format before publishing the course. (see #4)

For example, some course designs allow students to submit multiple assignments simultaneously.  In this case, instructors should set up the options button to enable an extension on numerous assignments.

Simultaneous submissions are ineffective for other courses (i.e., public speaking).  For example, I would not allow students to submit their first draft and final copy outline and their speech on the same day. 

5) When approved by the instructor, the extension would automatically (a) create a new section using the student name & IDs, (b) add the student to the section, (c) notify the student and instructor, and (d) provide instructions for the student that (1) require the student to click an acceptance link and (2) Include an “Accept the Terms” statement as part of the process of joining (accepting) the new section. 

I believe it is essential to clarify that assignment extensions (just like course extensions) are a modification of the syllabus contract.

Community Novice

Good, but a student MUST indicate a reason (excuse) as to why the assignment will be late.

Community Participant

I suspect it would have to have an instructor-controlled toggle, to support instructors who don't do extensions. Either way, some capacity for students to put in some text with details, or better yet, the date they propose completing the assignment, would be helpful. 

Community Member

I like this idea.  There are some good comments too on how to tighten it up.

Community Participant

I just had an instructor inquiry asking if this functionality was part of Canvas. They are currently using a Microsoft form as a stop-gap. Managing requests throughout the term within multiple sections makes this process cumbersome and time-consuming.

I would love to see this implemented in Canvas using the wonderful suggestions in this comment thread.

Community Novice

This would make everyone's life easier.

Community Member

I was just going to suggest this idea. I like it, especially as my district moves toward standards-based grading. Deadlines are important, but they are flexible, and it puts the burden on students to figure it out.

Community Explorer

We have a formal process for students to request extensions, which requires a PDF form to be completed and signed off and later archived appropriately in a central location. Managing this through email in parallel to Canvas is a chore (it's kinda slow to update assignments manually especially if you have more than a few students to process) and difficult to ensure compliance with policies while doing so.

It would be really great if Canvas had a built-in way for students to request an extension. It could provide a link to the PDF form, the number of extension days (and hours?) requested (with an option to cap the request at a certain maximum).

The course Teacher would be notified of the request, review the documentation, hit approve, and the assignment would automatically update.

Even better: if (optionally) no student could be provided an extension without appropriate approval.

Finally, nice to have but not essential: a button "download all extension requests" could be provided for offline archiving at the end of the course.

Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Archived


Thank you for sharing this idea with the Instructure Community!

The Product Team reviewed all feature proposals recently, and unfortunately, this thread was identified as one that they would not be able to include in their current or future plans. While we appreciate your proposal, we also want to be transparent about the likelihood of something like this making it to production.

Thank you for collaborating, and we hope that you submit another idea in the future!

Community Participant
Problem statement:

Make it easier for both the student and the instructor to grant extensions. Option available in the Assignment/Quizzes etc for instructors to allow students an extension. Currently, the workflow is cumbersome and not student-centered. Student messages Faculty, and Faculty have no quick way to manage extensions.

Proposed solution:

A button is similar to the Submit as Student option. Allow students to click, if enabled by the instructor, a "Request Extension" allowing a brief explanation from the student. It would show up on the faculty to-do list, if a student is requesting an extension. From the Faculty's perspective, they could choose to allow/deny and input the time frame, It would automatically change the due date for the student.

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