Finishing Strong with Canvas


finishstrongIn order to have a smooth end-of-semester, the Office of Information Technology (OIT) is offering the following list of best practice activities for closing your Canvas course and transitioning to the next semester. Please consider following these steps to finish the semester strong.1.  SECURE YOUR ASSESSMENTS:

If you are using the assessment feature within Canvas for course finals, check to make sure that the instructions are clear, the exam functions as you intend, and the exam is in a PUBLISHED state prior to the date of the exam. Tip: Make sure the exam is secure by setting the AVAILABLE date and time according to the University final exam schedule. Use the Student View to test students’ capabilities to access and take the exam.

2.  TELL THE STUDENTS GOODBYE:

Send a final, end-of-course message using the Announcements or Inbox tool to students to wrap up the term. Messages can include information about the final, when grades will be posted, a final request to complete a survey, or just a simple happy holiday greeting.

3.  REEL in the GRADES:

Before putting your grades in Banner, save time by downloading your Canvas Gradebook. After downloading, save it locally on your computer or flash drive for easy access. (Open Course–>Click on Grades button on the left course navigation menu–>Click on Gear icon–>Click Download Scores)

4.  OBTAIN the COURSE TEMPLATE:

If your courses will be fully online for Spring 2015 get them ready by uploading the campus course template to your spring shell prior to adding content. To get the template: sign up for a workshop, send a template request, or log into Canvas and enroll in the open Canvas course.

5.  NEUTRALIZE YOUR DASHBOARD:

A new semester means new classes on your course dropdown menu and a crowded Inbox. As you focus on content development, you can also turn some of your attention to making your Canvas dashboard easier to navigate. First, clean your Canvas Inbox by archiving your Fall 2014 messages so that you can start the Spring semester off on a clean slate. Next, customize your course dropdown menu in two simple steps. Finally, completely neutralize your dashboard by deleting all unwanted messages and notifications from your screen.

6.  GET YOUR CONTENT for SPRING:

Copy content from previous courses into your upcoming by using the Canvas import tool. Note that copying old content with the same name as content already in the new shell will result in pages and modules being re-numbered and can cause confusion and broken links during development so rename former pages and/or modules as needed soon after they are moved into the new shells to distinguish content. Tip: Use the Select Content function and only copy needed content to save time and space.

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