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notifications - Instructor gets a Canvas notification when a student becomes "Inactive"

notifications - Instructor gets a Canvas notification when a student becomes "Inactive"

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When a student drops a class no notification sent to the instructor at our university.

If the course includes a team project, the team frequently doesn't hear from the student who dropped the course.  A week or two can go by before the dots get connected.  This can have a significant impact on the team's performance.

I would like a quick notification when a student's status changes to "Inactive."  That would help a lot.

Thanks,

-Mark

8 Comments
Stef_retired
Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Moderating

@mark_vanorder 

Thanks for sharing this idea. How does your school "inactivate" or "deactivate" users at the account level? This will most likely need to be go forward as a request for a joint project with the specific SIS your school uses to manage enrollments, so please add those salient details to the idea description as appropriate.

mark_vanorder
Community Participant

I'm checking with our Canvas admin team. Will get back to you shortly. -Mark

robotcars
Community Champion

@mark_vanorder 

I'm not sure how your institution is using it, but the default Canvas inactive state for enrollments don't refer to a students activity in the course, or act as an early warning.

The inactive status for Canvas refers to an enrollment that hasn't begun, generally before the term starts.

If set to 'inactive', student will be listed in the course roster for teachers, but will not be able to participate in the course until their enrollment is activated.

https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/enrollments.html#method.enrollments_api.create

https://canvas.instructure.com/doc/api/file.sis_csv.html (enrollments.csv)

The students enrollment should change to active, either by an SIS update the day your course/term starts, or default to the course Participation settings, where you can chose Term (and your institution sets the term state/end date in Canvas Terms), or Course, where you get to choose the start/end date specifically for your course.

After the course or term end date, the enrollment will be concluded or completed.

 

 

mark_vanorder
Community Participant

I was hoping this would be an easy request but it quickly turned into a quagmire.  I think it is the same quagmire that creates the problem in the first place - distributed ownership with no one player clearly accountable for the outcomes.

When I checked with our Canvas Admin team they told me this would be a development effort on their end with little chance of being addressed because it is not the official system for this purpose.

I appreciate robotcars response but I think we must use it differently than described.  When I see go into "People" in Canvas everybody is active (even before the start of the term.) I only see them becoming inactive if they drop the course.

Thanks for everyone's comments but it looks like this is not a great solution path.

Mark

jmurray6
Community Member

I generally hate to speculate, but it sounds like @mark_vanorder's institution uses the feature similar to how we use it.  With our SIS integration (Ellucian Colleague) enrollments are active in Canvas once a student is registered for the course (even before the course has begun - students just cannot participate until the course is published by the faculty member and the start date of the course/section has been reached).

Colleague has different "drop codes" - we use one drop code (X) if a student drops before census date (as that drop would not transcript) and a different drop code if the drop is after census date (as that would transcript as a W).  Our SIS integration is setup such that a drop with "X" is treated by Canvas as a "hard drop" (enrollment is deleted in Canvas) and any other drop code is treated as a "soft drop" (the enrollment is set to "inactive" in Canvas) so that any work the student had completed before drop (and their attendance information) is preserved and visible to the faculty member.

Of course, Faculty actually have to toggle the "view inactive enrollments" in the grade book to see these students, or view the "people" page as there is no notification for an enrollment status change in Canvas (that I am aware of).

What I do (as Assessment Coordinator and Canvas Admin) is I send a weekly report out of grades and attendance information to our "At Risk/Intervention teams" - this report includes an updated list of all drops within the past week. But again - that's not an automatic notification and is something that the faculty members would have to check/look at.

mark_vanorder
Community Participant

Thanks for sharing. It is interesting to see the different implementation approaches.  Your report sounds very helpful; especially in our covid world where it is easy for students to drift.

hornungp
Community Member

I wrote a script that uses the Canvas API and checks the roster every hour or so, and sends me an email with any status changes. It was the only way to achieve the functionality that I desperately need.

It's really a shame that this isn't built into canvas as a notification.

Stef_retired
Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Open for Conversation