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Submission comments appear in Inbox indicator

Submission comments appear in Inbox indicator

(2)
As an teacher, I would like the numbered indicator next to the Inbox link include how many unread Submission comments I have. Although I keep my Canvas to email notifications turned on, a large number of our faculty turn off their email notifications. (As a Canvas admin at our institution, I hear how often this occurs.) They manually check the Inbox for submission comments.

 

This feature request fulfillment may also include displaying submission comments with Unread Messages in the Inbox, similar to Add Inbox + Submission Comments Filter in Conversations .

 

Excelsior!

67 Comments
biray
Community Champion

Thank you for your submission  @mccurdym ​.

Is this what you're looking for?

103265_pastedImage_1.png

If so, why wouldn't you want this number next to inbox and unread? Or, the other side to this: why wouldn't you just go into submission comments and see your newest comments?

I guess I'm trying to understand where this would bring more efficiency to a teacher's workflow.

Looking forward to your feedback.

Smiley Happy

mccurdym
Community Participant

HI Biray:

Thank you for your reply. For the indicator I was referring to the one next to the Inbox on the dashboard

41936b71-66a8-4673-90c3-afa4696ccc50_display.png

In our instance of Canvas (cloud-hosted), our unread submission comments are not reflected in the numbered Indicator next to the Inbox. Canvas currently does an awesome job of alerting us to New Submissions and to New Conversations directly on the Dashboard. If we could be alerted to New Submission Comments directly on the dashboard, then that would improve efficiency because faculty would not need to manually go to the Inbox and check for new submissions comments.

However, if the Inbox on the dashboard should display the number of unread submission comments, then we will contact our CSM to have this awesome feature turned on.

Many thanks. Smiley Happy

jordan
Community Champion

This idea has moved to the next stage and will be open for voting among the Canvas Community, from Wed. October 7, 2015 - Wed. January 6, 2015.

Check out this doc for additional details about how the voting process works! Smiley Wink

SPARROWR
Community Participant

I have had several instructors make this discovery as well. They've noticed that the Inbox will not alert them of a new submission comment--they have to check that folder manually. I think for many of our instructors that thinking is, "If my submission comments are located in Inbox, why do I not get the same alert in the global help menu like I do for general message notifications?" If we could get that notification to also display submission comment alerts, that would be a positive step for our faculty's workflow.

terry_hill
Community Member

Yes, please! I would like the numbered indicator next to the Inbox link to include how many unread Submission comments I have. Options to manually checking the Inbox for submission comments is appreciated.

915085611
Community Participant

This would be great. A few iterations of Canvas ago, the inbox would just automatically contain both submission and message items in the same inbox--that would be the most convenient. It was great because I could go to a student and see a record of all communication in Canvas (both messages and submission comments and replies).

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

Just as an FYI, you can also set it up via Canvas notifications so you get an email (or text, or whatever you prefer) when a student makes a submission comment. This has actually worked the best for me and I don't mess with my Canvas Inbox for submission comments unless I want to double-check something.

SubmissionComments.png

915085611
Community Participant

I do this too, and it is a pretty effective workaround for me. But if I reply to the submission comment, it goes back to the submission on the assignment and will not be visible right away to a student unless the student has also updated his or her notification preferences.

When submission comments were part of the regular inbox, all interactions with the student could be found together in the inbox. This had the pedagogical effect of allowing me to see the student in a more holistic way--i.e. I could see that I was having a lot of interactions about a particular issue with a student when I pulled up the student in the inbox since I was seeing every back and forth with that student without having to go to particular assignments one at a time.

dhulsey
Community Champion

Yes. Shiloh is correct. Months and months later, I am still saddened by the loss of comments in the inbox. Right now, the only way to receive notification of comments is to set up an email alert as Kona suggests, but users should not have to rely on external notifications to know what is happening in Canvas. I should know something is new when I log into Canvas. Assignment comments need a notification device within Canvas, and the way it used to be in the inbox was perfect.

allison
Instructure
Instructure

 @kona ​, thanks for your suggestion regarding the Submission Comment notification. From my perspective (and I would love your comments on this), the real problem is that teachers are missing some of the new replies left by their students. The reverse is probably also true: students are potentially missing comments left by their teachers. I'm thinking that tracking student-teacher communication is SO vital to student success that it should exist somewhere outside of Conversations. What comes to mind immediately is that the trigger for reading recent comments could be better highlighted in the SpeedGrader and/or on the Dashboard in the To Do/Upcoming Events/Feedback sidebar.

I'd like to invite voters on their thread to step outside of the Inbox for a moment and think about where else in Canvas you might want to see the information related to student/teacher feedback. If your vote is for this to exist IN the inbox, tell me more about why seeing it there would be more useful than in other areas of Canvas or in your email inbox via Canvas notifications.

Looking forward to hearing your ideas!

dhulsey
Community Champion

The inbox is the ideal place. The inbox indicator appears on every page in Canvas . On every single page, there is a persistant reminder that a user has unread messages. No matter where in Canvas a user starts their session, that inbox indicator is there. Further, conversations stimulate dialogue. I have never had more interaction with students about feedback than when comments appeared in the inbox. It was awesome, Allison. It was one of my favorite Canvas features. Can I have it back,  please? Smiley Happy

whatever happens, some indication of new comments is a must, and I would settle for a dashboard notification on the course tile.

Thanks for asking!

kona
Community Coach
Community Coach

Deactivated user​, I completely agree with this, "the real problem is that teachers are missing some of the new replies left by their students. The reverse is probably also true: students are potentially missing comments left by their teachers."

For me, and I'm a Canvas admin and teach using Canvas, I have to agree with Dallas about the inbox (with indicator) being the best way to make sure everyone notices comments. As Dallas mentioned, the Inbox indicator shows up no matter where you are in Canvas - reminding you that "Hey, there's something you need to check out here!"

To be honest I don't always check/look at my To Do/Upcoming Events sidebar that much. Why? I have assignments due at regular intervals and I have the days/times that I do my grading, so unless I'm getting ready to grade (or a student has messaged me and let me know they resubmitted something or if I could look at something) I don't really pay attention to the sidebar. Yes, I could change my work-flow to watch out for comments, but in all honesty I'm not sure how much my faculty use the sidebar (or at least to what extent). For students, I'd say that is a different story completely (and unfortunately). Our students live and die by the sidebar and if a notification was added there students would probably be more likely to see and check them out. Yet, is that more effective than having an indicator for the Inbox? I'm not sure and if anything would want it in both places to be safe.

Same thing goes for an indicator being in Speedgrader. I'm not sure how much sense that makes (and maybe I'm misunderstanding something), but if I've already graded and left comments then I'm not likely to go back into Speedgrader for that same assignment unless I know a student has commented on it or resubmitted something. In addition, similar to the sidebar, I don't log into Canvas and go into Speedgrader every day. Thus me seeing the comments would likely be delayed.

Overall I'm not opposed to an indicator being in the sidebar or Speedgrader (sidebar more so than Speedgrader), but I think the primary location for most visibility is still the inbox.

As for other possible places to have an indicator, I'm team Inbox, but it might be useful to have a notification in the gradebook - possibly showing the exact assignment and student (so a specific square on the gradebook grid) of who has posted a comment/follow-up comment.

Hope this helps!

stevec
Community Contributor

I agree that an indicator next to the inbox would be an appropriate way of making these comments visible to teachers, but I'm not sure why student comments within a drop box aren't treated like any other submission to that drop box.

Everyone uses Canvas in a different way. I use speedgrader for a given drop box, and once I'm done, I don't return to the drop box. If a student submits a new assignment, I get a notification that this has happened and I return to the drop box. I would expect that if a student submits a comment, I would get a similar notification.

mccurdym
Community Participant

For students they see comments under "Recent Feedback" on their dashboard and inside the course. Instructors do not. Though students seeing 3-5 individual comments from 2-3 courses may be more manageable than an instructor seeing 10-20-30 comments from 3-5 courses. Again, great product! But consider creating Canvas UI notification for submission comments to instructors, as the only way to know a student submitted a comment is to check an email address or to manually go in to the Inbox > Submission comments.

Excelsior!

allison
Instructure
Instructure

Follow-up question for voters on this thread:

If we were to include the number of unread submission comments in the indicator badge next to the Inbox button:

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 6.58.18 PM.png

would folks still want to see the count in the Submission Comment sub-menu?

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 6.59.44 PM.png

or would you see that as superfluous? If we removed it, would it disrupt your workflow?

dhulsey
Community Champion

If submission comments appeared on the counter and the comments themselves were in the inbox, I would not need a counter in the sub menu. If submission comments appear on the inbox counter without the comments themselves being in the inbox, well, I believe there would be many confused instructors and students looking for messages they were missing. Thanks for asking, Allison!

kmeeusen
Community Coach
Community Coach

Allison:

Not quite sure what you are asking, but................

Yes, I would like to see submission comments included in the Unread-Indicator for the Inbox, but I would not like to loose the ability to filter by submission comments. Horrible disruption for some who depend on the inbox, instead of their classrooms for managing submission comments.

KLM

Stefanie
Community Team
Community Team

Deactivated user, I agree with  @dhulsey --I think. Smiley Wink For some reason I seem to recall a time when submission comments were included in the Inbox stream. A hue and cry from the Community at the time resulted in having them removed from the Inbox stream and placed in their own filter. At that point, I think unread submission comments were briefly still included in the Inbox unread items badge, and this caused confusion among our users who didn't know why they couldn't get their badge counter to zero after reading their inbox messages and weren't yet accustomed to using the drop-down to filter the view to Submission comments.

So if my recalled history lesson is at all accurate, doesn't including submission comments in the Inbox essentially mean that we're going back to an earlier iteration of the Inbox? And if so, would we once again have the hue and cry from those who didn't want them there then and wouldn't want them there now?

Forgive me if I'm mis-remembering. But I think my vague unease and misgivings over this feature idea are why I never upvoted it. At the end of the day I guess I'm agreeing with  @kmeeusen ​--I would like to maintain the ability to filter submission comments, and for my purposes, since I receive notifications of all submission comments (and those notifications take me directly to the SpeedGrader where the comment was made), I don't want to have to go to my Inbox to clear out an "unread" indicator for comments I've actually already read in my email inbox and in the SpeedGrader.

dhulsey
Community Champion

The best of all worlds, perhaps is if we have another filter in conversations: "inbox plus submission comments." Combined with the ability for the user to set a default filter, each user could decide what she wants to see in her inbox.

mccurdym
Community Participant

Hi Allison et al:

Having a count in the Submission Comment sub-menu would be advantageous to quickly see where to go in the Inbox.

Remember, the main concern here is there is no alert in Canvas to let faculty know they have a submission comment. There's no alert in the inbox, nor in the dashboard (right-hand side panel.) Yes, I do have the comment notifications, coming to my work email. But this is about consistency within Canvas. When a student submits an assignment, there's an alert about the submission in Canvas for me. When I make a comment to the student, there's an alert about the comment in Canvas for the student. However, and here's the purpose of this feature request, when a student makes a comment for an assignment, there is no alert about the submission comment in Canvas for me. Whether the alert is in the Inbox AND/OR in the dashboard (right-hand side) with all the other Alerts, an alert in Canvas is the priority.

Again, Canvas is an awesome product and has an awesome community and development team that continually works on consistency through its platform.

Excelsior!