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Community Coach
Community Coach

Top Instructor/Student Issues

As part of my InstructureCon 2017‌ presentation I'm going to go through some of the top issues Instructors and Students have with Canvas. The catch? They are things that CAN be fixed/avoided! So not bugs or things we would like changed in Canvas, etc. 

I've got a pretty good list going, but was wondering what are some of the top/current issues YOU have seen/noticed? Also, if you come up with something I don't have on my list and that I use in my presentation I'll not only give you a shout-out in my presentation, but I'll also award you a badge and some points (I might have a few I could share... :smileylaugh:).

Let the fun begin!!

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Community Coach
Community Coach

As an admin for our Canvas instance, here are some of the common things I've seen:

  • Making sure a course is "Published" and that the Start/End dates are set correctly.  Sometimes we get calls from students asking why they cannot access their course, and this is the main reason why.  Also, instructors need to make sure that they review the course settings that restrict access before/after a course starts.
  • Making sure that the overall Module is published.  I've come across times when instructors have published all content within a Module, but the Module itself is not published.  Students then ask their instructor why they cannot see the content.
  • How do instructors create Groups in a course?
  • How can I check for bad/inactive links in my course?
  • How can I recover something in Canvas that I accidentally deleted?
  • How can I upload quiz questions into Canvas?  (This one requires that instructors reach out to my team...as we use the Respondus 4.0 software to batch-upload quiz questions to Canvas.)
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Community Coach
Community Coach

Nice list, thanks!!

And yes, publishing is definitely tricky!

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Community Member

That making sure things really are published is definitely a problem that I have heard from students about, not in my courses so much (I don't use Canvas for content), but in response to a survey where I asked them what advice they would give to faculty using Canvas, and also advice to other students. You might find some useful things there; the students would definitely like for faculty to have the whole course ready to go when the semester begins. 🙂

FALL: OU Digital Teaching: Canvas Survey: Week 8, Fall 2016 

SPRING: OU Digital Teaching: Canvas Survey: Week 8, Spring 2017 

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Thank you so much for sharing!

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Community Team
Community Team

kona@richland.edu, what came to my mind when I saw your question was the matter of links--not broken links, per se, but links an instructor has created that direct to a different course, or to personal files, or to images, or to anything to which the instructor has access but the student would not. These are tricky to pick up when the course is under construction, so I'd recommend that the instructor allocate time after publishing the course to switch to Student View and check every link to make sure her students can see it.

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The link validator checks for some of this stuff - linking to different courses, linking to unpublished content - but definitely a good idea to check your course ahead of time! Especially images in quizzes!

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Community Member

So, how do you validate links in quizzes?  The respondus / canvas link is weak, often dropping graphics.  I go through by hand EVERY semester since links are also broken when quizzes are copied from one semester to the next!

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Community Coach
Community Coach

The only way I know to check that images are showing up in quizzes is to literally check each quiz. So either using the test student or the preview function.

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Community Member

That is what I do and it is a pain.  Alco, you cannot search the text of your questions if you have more than 50 questions in a test bank.  They cannot be expanded!  So, even though  I keep a list of questions with graphics, I cannot easily find them to fix.  This is a real time-waster for me.  If anyone has a better method, I am open to all suggestions!

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