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Syllabus assignment list option to sort with most current on top

Syllabus assignment list option to sort with most current on top

(1)
  
  Idea open for vote Wed. October 5, 2016 - Wed. January 4, 2017  Learn more about voting...

 

The syllabus assignment view provides a great summary of all the events & assignments in a course. However, a long list of assignments and events requires a needles amount of scrolling on behalf of the user as the semester progresses. A view option to allow chronological or reverse chronological order would give maximum flexibility.

 

     

  Comments from Instructure

 

October 2016 update form Chris Ward
Thanks for taking the time to vote on this idea. From the discussion in this thread, it appears that sorting won't be a satisfactory solution here, so we'll be closing this idea. However, if you want to propose a solution around filtering I can see a lot of value there.
25 Comments
jordan
Community Member

204017_pastedImage_3.pngThank you for your Feature Idea submission. We wanted to call your attention to   which was submitted in a different voting period, but archived due to lack of votes or inadequate response. You may want to reference this idea for insight. Here's another similar idea:

Since archived ideas can be re-submitted, your idea will be open for vote in the next voting cycle.

In the meantime, help your idea gain traction by posting a link to this idea in the comments of the other, archived idea (which will notify author and anyone who is following the idea) and share your idea to colleagues and peers as well.

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

This idea has moved to the next stage and will be open for voting among the Canvas Community, from Wed. October 5, 2016 - Wed. January 4, 2017.

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

James
Navigator

Wouldn't a reverse chronological view represent needless scrolling at the beginning of the semester? Even if it is the end of the semester, you need to do scrolling to get past what is the last thing due to get to the portion that is currently due.

I'm also not sure from the original request what is being asked for in terms of the option. Is the option at the instructor's discretion, a setting on the user page, or the ability to click at the top of the date column in the syllabus and change the sort on the fly?

I don't use the Syllabus page because it takes too long to load and there are other ways to organize the material that suit my needs better. If it were to be fixed so that it was usable, I still wouldn't want it sorted in reverse order. If the sequence was to change, I would want something like two sections: one week ago through the end of the semester at the top and anything older than a week at the bottom. Even then, I'm not sure I would vote for it.

gabriele_gonzal
Surveyor

This is if the Syllabus page is your Home page. I would like to see the newest assignments on top, too! There might a sort option: Newest first/ Oldest first.

ehill1
Community Member

You bring up an excellent point. If all your assignments are posted at the beginning of the semester, neither of the proposed sorting options will help. However, the current view doesn't meet that need anyways, so it wouldn't result in a change for the use case you describe. As you said, you're using a different solution in any case.

Stefanie
Community Team
Community Team

If the description of the feature idea actually called for most current on top, I would have remained neutral. However, the description asks specifically for "reverse chronological order."  If I were using reverse chronological order, and I had assignment due dates ranging from mid-August to early December, the ones that would appear at the top would be the ones due in early December. I can see the utility of most current on top, but personally I would not find the option of reverse chronological order useful either as a teacher or a student, so I downvoted.

kmeeusen
Community Coach
Community Coach

Ditto on the down-vote.

I discourage my students from even using the Syllabus assignment list, the Calendar assignment links and the To-Do lists. I hide the Assignments, Quizzes and Discussions pages in course navigation and advise my students strongly and repeatedly to use the modules page so that they can better keep on track, and engage in the learning content that will help them succeed with the assignments and assessments.

Since my courses are all completely developed before the term starts, I would not want my students who still insist on shortcuts to be even more confused by a reverse-ordered list at the start of the term.

KLM

jlmiller
Community Member

Yes - I agree... it would be great to have more flexibility in this section. I have several assignments each week that are similar from one class to the next however I have no control as to what order they show up within the due date section (without making each assignment due on different minutes). This is a slightly different issue but in the same vein. I would like to be able to manipulate the order of assignments within the course summary in order to give a more cohesive flow - week in and week out.

Stefanie
Community Team
Community Team

 @jlmiller ​, I'm happy to see that you just created a feature idea for this:   I too have resorted to that "due on different minutes" workaround, and I am not thrilled with it.

ronmarx
Community Member

Anything that makes student usability of Canvas more intuitive is a positive step forward to cement Canvas as a world-class LMS!

iRon_Mrx

ejp10
Community Member

I would like this as a setting for instructors. It would be helpful for me since I do reveal assignments gradually over the semester (I even have my modules in reverse chronological order).

But if you have the entire set of assignments open, having them in chronological order would make more sense. Having the ability to hide the Assignment list in the syllabus would also be helpful.

I end up splitting my syllabus in two parts so that that students see the policy info on one page and the list of assignment deadlines on another. If it's one doc, the deadlines get buried at the bottom of the policy info.

My 4¢

mhomp3
Community Member

I have been placing my modules within reverse chronological order for this same reason --- after several assignments within a module, there is too much scrolling needed to find the current material.  However I am not sure this will be very convenient when I teach the course again.  I would like to see "sub-modules" within the modules that can also be condensed (hidden) or expanded to minimize the amount of scrolling needed to find recent content - regardless of whether in chronological or reverse chronological order.

cholling
Adventurer III

I would prefer to have several faculty-controlled settings on this so that it could work for the individual faculty. Myself, I would like to be able to disable it completely because I try to instruct my faculty to run their courses through Modules, and having the assignments listed on the Syllabus page is confusing to the students. Yet, I like having the syllabus on its own tool and front and center.

carrie
Instructure
Instructure

What if the list of dated items in the syllabus were grouped as: Late; Due Soon; Submitted; Undated?

Similar to how Discussions are grouped: Pinned; Open; Closed.

If grouped like that, would the syllabus item groups need to be collapsable or the items therein be sortable?

*Note: I work for Instructure but am not on the product team; I just like this idea and wanted to weigh in. Smiley Happy 

James
Navigator

The groupings suggested are a misfit for the syllabus page. The syllabus page should be kept in chronological order or possibly a chronological split with the old material moved to the bottom rather than just shaded.

Late, Due Soon, and Submitted are not compatible with a chronological ordering. Also, the Due Soon is too close to the instructor-hated To Do list where students only look a week out. If I'm using the syllabus page, it's because it shows the entire semester and all the dates in chronological order so students can get a sense of what's coming up and not just live by the few items that Canvas chooses to say is due soon. My project that's due in 3 weeks but requires people to be working on it every few days until then gets no love because it doesn't show up on the right sidebar.

I don't like this idea I'm about to give, but I would rather see those as filter options rather than groups. Or possibly one group for past items that is collapsed by default and then another group for everything else that is not collapsed by default. Out of sight means out of mind to students. I really don't want them to be able to hide the information on the syllabus about upcoming items. Or maybe there could be a checkbox at the top to "Show past items" that is checked by default but when a student selects it, then it removes the old items.

Past events shouldn't end up at the bottom or be collapsed as soon as the due date has passed. That's because some faculty accept late work, but if you move it to the bottom or hide it, then students forget about it and it becomes a 0 rather than just being late.

I'm spitting out ideas in an effort to find something I like, but I'm finding I really don't like any of these groupings. The syllabus is the one place where everything appears chronologically. I can change the order in modules, assignments are within assignment groups (if using them), and quizzes are chronological but split up by type of quiz or survey, but the syllabus is where it's all laid out in date order. The calendar doesn't list the undated assignments like the syllabus does and it's not specific to a single course.

ronmarx
Community Member

James,

I agree, a filtering option would be an elegant solution, particularly from a student perspective.

Ron

kcorp
Surveyor

For campuses that are just starting to use Canvas and are not using full time/100% yet, this would be very helpful to be able to show the assignment list sorted by most recent.

jbrady2
Surveyor

stefaniesanders​ Thank you for pointing that out as I missed the part about reverse chronological on first read of this idea. I tried to think of a possible use case for reverse chronological so that I would not need to change my vote, but I am at a loss for a valid one.

ehill1
Community Member

Reverse chronological makes sense if you add material as the course progresses, so the most current is on top. The spirit of this is to make the syllabus page more user friendly. I think deciding what order assignments should be listed when they are all posted is a trickier problem, but I think allowing an option for reverse chronological ordering on the syllabus page (for those who use it) would make things more clear for students.

jbrady2
Surveyor

Perhaps it is a confusion in my understanding of reverse chronological, but I think of that to mean that the last date in syllabus would be the one on top.  For this reason, adding something during the course would only display it at the top if it were given a date later than the most currently near end-of-term assignment.  Perhaps a better request would be to keep chronological and have assignments with due dates that have already passed automatically move to the bottom and also have newly posted assignments temporarily appear at the top, perhaps under a separate row titled Course Change or Newly Added Assignment/Quiz/Discussion (maybe for a few days to a week) to allow students to notice the change, and then they only appear in their actual order in the due dates list.