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How can I design courses in a several time zones?

Question asked by Harry Hahne on Jun 15, 2019
Latest reply on Jun 20, 2019 by Jay Savage

Our school uses Canvas for both online and face-to face courses. Since the school has campuses in several states as well as online courses, the time zone for courses can vary between the Pacific, Mountain and Arizona time zones. To make it more confusing, Arizona time does not use Daylight Savings Time (since people here don't want any more sun), so part of the year Arizona Time is the same as Mountain Time and part of the year it is the same as Pacific Time.


For each course, I have set the time zone for the course to the appropriate local time or Pacific Time for online courses.I would assume this means that this is the time that course activities would use.


The annoying thing is that Canvas ignores the course time zone when I am designing a course and instead uses my local time zone. So if I don't pay careful attention to every activity or assignment that has a date, the time entered in the course can be off by an hour or more.


What I have been doing is changing the time zone in my profile when I am designing or modifying course content to match the time zone of that course. Then at least I end up with the right date for the activity in the course design. However, since I am working on courses in several time zones at the same time, it is really easy to set an assignment to the wrong day or time.


Is there any way to force Canvas to use the time zone in the course settings when working on course design? If you set a course time zone in the course settings, it makes sense to me that when the designer adds an activity the course time zone would be used rather than the designer's personal time zone. But Canvas instead uses the designers time zone.