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PristoMiky
Surveyor

Newbie to LMS (Canvas) as an instructor and OVERWHELMED...

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Just want to say I have tried searching old posts and have found a few helpful ones that I saved for specific issues or things, but I am trying to find a true beginners guide. I have used a few LMS as a student but before covid my school did not have a proper LMS.

We are supposed to be putting in our couSHAREit rses into Canvas for fall and I am honestly overwhelmed. I went through the Canvas training and I have checked out the community, but I was hoping to find a newb guide designed by instructors (reading or video). I don't know where to begin and I really want to set up my courses to work f2f (we are 100% in-person) but also easily transition online when Admins plans inevitably fail and we go back online.

I feel like time is my enemy and just like everyone else I have life stresses and 2020 eating my soul.

So who or what helped you when you first started in Canvas?

 Appvn Please and thank you.

Sincerely,

Brainless & stressed out subhuman whack-a-doodle.

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lturner2
Explorer III

@PristoMiky I sincerely apologize for the position you find yourself in...and you are not alone. I will try to avoid my soapbox of how this industry can fail its students (and teachers) but I know that won't help right now. what I can do is offer you a bit of my time and help you with a few concepts that are applicable across the platform, in hopes that you can then use that information in order to build out some other parts of your course.

Yes, there are tutorials out there, but most assume that you understand basic functionality and navigation. Luckily, once you get that under your belt, things will start making sense. It is almost easier to go outside the community and look for a 5 or 10 minute "Introduction to Canvas" that someone uploaded to youtube and watch how they upload a syllabus. then go from there.

Send me your email address and we can connect, even later today. I can also set up video conferencing and try some screen-sharing. I'm larry.turner@abbvie.com

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6 Replies
lturner2
Explorer III

@PristoMiky I sincerely apologize for the position you find yourself in...and you are not alone. I will try to avoid my soapbox of how this industry can fail its students (and teachers) but I know that won't help right now. what I can do is offer you a bit of my time and help you with a few concepts that are applicable across the platform, in hopes that you can then use that information in order to build out some other parts of your course.

Yes, there are tutorials out there, but most assume that you understand basic functionality and navigation. Luckily, once you get that under your belt, things will start making sense. It is almost easier to go outside the community and look for a 5 or 10 minute "Introduction to Canvas" that someone uploaded to youtube and watch how they upload a syllabus. then go from there.

Send me your email address and we can connect, even later today. I can also set up video conferencing and try some screen-sharing. I'm larry.turner@abbvie.com

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SusanNiemeyer
Surveyor II

As lturner2 pointed out, there are a great many very helpful videos on Youtube. I would highly recommend Ashlee Espinosa's YouTube channel. She's a community college instructor in southern California, and she has created many very basic Canvas tutorials. Also do a search for Canvas Queen on YouTube. Her videos are also very helpful and encouraging.

In addition to the forum here, you might want to join the Teachers Using Canvas Facebook group. You will get many helpful replies to your questions. 

lturner2
Explorer III

Thank you for the additional resources, @SusanNiemeyer!

@PristoMiky one thing to remember is that you and everyone else at your school is in the same boat. It's true that some may be more familiar with Canvas, or using an LMS for instruction, so don't place too many high-level expectations on yourself at this point. Really - go slowly. The first thing you will want to do is to get comfortable with the navigation of the page. Logging in and navigating around, seeing what is customizable.

From your course, I would suggest starting with your syllabus upload, as I mentioned before. The steps you take in performing this task will be fundamental in how you bring content into Canvas. The other features may take some time to decide what you want to use, so don't even stress about it right now. Yes, there are many things you can do with your courses, but don't look at the whole course right now.

Consider your Syllabus/Course Outline in how it is structured. Are you teaching by chapters, or topics, or by week? That will be one determining factor in how you can set up your course. If you are as busy as everyone else on here, any one of us will help you even if you want to ask for help bit by bit.

If you chase two rabbits, you won't catch either 🙃

 

Hildi_Pardo
Community Advocate
Community Advocate

Hi @PristoMiky - We've all been there -- It is definitely stressful and overwhelming to learn a new tool.   When I first started a did a LOT of reading of the Canvas Guides.  And I had to try things out on my own as well.  This all take a lot of time, something of which we have so little.

I've written a few blog posts that I hope are helpful -- since you've had a Canvas training:

 

SusanNiemeyer
Surveyor II

@PristoMiky  Before you spend a lot of time uploading materials, inquire whether your institution has a standard template they would like you to use. Some schools have required templates; others have recommended ones.

There are a number of templates available on Commons. I also know that Canvas LMS has a collection of templates for different kinds of institutions and student groups. (Can someone remember where they can be found on this site?)

 

JeffCampbell
Surveyor II

A lot of fellow coworkers in our district were in a similar boat as we added Canvas last year, so I started making videos. You can view HERE. It is by no means complete. Things got busy this spring and I hope to start adding more videos over the summer.

Here is Ashley's playlist, mentioned above. She has great content, as someone else mentioned.