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Community Team
Community Team

Why We Community: Bridging The Distance and Empowering Every User

This year at Instructurecon, the Community team gave an update on the Canvas Community. We wanted to tell people how much the community has grown and the main reasons people come to the community in the first place. We also wanted to convey why community as a concept is important to Instructure and also what goes on behind the scenes on a day-to-day basis.

The Canvas Community now gets over 3 million page views in a given month. To put that in perspective, that is 1.5x more than many corporate websites receive overall and about 3x what it was four years ago. Over 300k people have now created accounts with 6.5k more new accounts each month. About 20k users are active in a given month - voting, commenting, asking questions, linking, liking, etc. Most people come to the community looking for the answer to just one question, but by any measure a very high percentage of them become repeat visitors.

Manager of Community, Renee Carney talked about the process in which Canvas users come to the community to suggest ways to make Canvas better. Users then stay involved in a conversation back and forth with Instructure's Product team as the original idea is broken down and defined in terms of project requirements and then is built into Canvas.

Manager of Documentation, Erin Hallmark described the intricate and massive effort that goes on behind the scenes to keep all documentation for multiple products up to date with release cycles ranging from one week to three weeks depending on the product. They also provide change management documentation (aka release notes) for up to 12 different release cycles.

Overall there is a huge effort that goes into keeping everybody informed about how Canvas and its related suite of tools work and how they change. Thirteen full time employees and eleven part time contractors work to towards this goal. This is in addition to the thousands of Canvas admins and educators who participate in order to keep themselves informed, pass along information to their peers and help each other. As has always been the case, the purpose of the Canvas Community is to provide a way for people interested in Canvas to find the information they need and to connect with each other.

If you have questions about any of this or comments, as always, please share!

Slide Deck

11 Replies
Community Champion

Thanks for this post Scott! In my humble opinion, the 'Community' is one of the best and most valuable aspects of Instructure / Canvas. There is a whole laundry list of reasons, as you mention above, but essentially, it says it all in its name - 'Community'!

I want to say 'Thank you!' to you and Renee, along with everyone else that is involved, for helping to make this the vibrant, driving force that it is! I am going to share your post with all of our faculty, in hopes of encouraging more of them to understand what this Community is, how they can use and benefit from it, and to get involved with this incredible asset.

Thank you, Earl - for your kind words but more for being a constant advocate for the community and for your faculty members and students over all the years.

Community Champion

I've only just seen this gem  @scottdennis hanks to stefaniesandersinking it to the new quests announcement. 

Thanks for the details you included. Always good to know.

And 925024864 you are so right about how vibrant the Community is. Aren't we lucky!

Community Coach
Community Coach

Thank you  @scottdennis ‌ for this post and sharing the resources from the presentation. The Canvas Community continues to be one of the best parts of using this system. The ability to share and find resources is wonderful, and the connections with people from all around the world has been a highlight for me. 

If only all 300k of us could attend InstructureCon!

But hey, all 300K can attend Can*Innovate! Yay! 🙂 

CanInnovate flyer

Yes, especially the events that are highlighted in CanvasLIVE‌!

I jiggled the CanvasLIVE slideshow template that I had from old CanvasLIVE things to use for my Can*Innovate presentation! 🙂

Community Champion

Really! Best news! Thanks laurakgibbs.

Community Team
Community Team

As an update, at last count we are 362,993 members strong.  In August there were just north of 8 million page views in the Community.

Community Contributor

Canvas is a fab system but the community is absolutely second to none. Rarely do I go to it and leave without learning a little or a hell of lot  more about the system and it how can be used. 

Thank you Maeve.  The community wouldn't work if it wasn't for quite a few people like you.  Smiley Happy