Digital Teaching & Learning Blog

New Canvas Features (10/17/18)

Peer reviews on To Do list

Assignments with peer reviews enabled have now been added as To Do list items on Canvas. This means peer reviews will be shown in the To Do list located on the right-hand side of a course homepage from a student perspective.



Screencast-O-Matic is a screen recording software tool that is available FREE for UMN instructors, staff, and students. The software allows you to make video recordings of your computer screen and record audio at the same time.


Screencast-O-Matic is great for:

Voice Recognition in SpeedGrader

The SpeedGrader feature in Canvas offers a voice recognition tool for adding comments when grading assignments. This allows you to simply record your voice and Canvas automatically turns it into written text for the student to view once the assignment has been graded.


Sorting Students in SpeedGrader

The SpeedGrader feature in Canvas automatically sorts students in alphabetical order. You are also able to sort students by the date of their assignment submissions, the submission status (needs grading, not submitted, etc.) and by course sections.


Canvas Roll Call Attendance Tool

Canvas has a built-in tool that allows you to easily take attendance for your course. You can access the tool through the course navigation menu. Students will not be able to see this menu item and there is no need to hide it in the course Settings.


Learn more about how to:

Grading in Canvas vs. Moodle

While the names for many parts of Canvas’ grading system are different from what they were in Moodle, much of the functionality remains the same. The table below describes how Moodle and Canvas differ in the titles they give different aspects of the gradebook.

Grading With Canvas Rubrics

You can make grading much easier for yourself and more explicit for students by adding rubrics to your Canvas site. Rubrics only need to be entered into Canvas once and can be reused across all your assignments and across all your courses.


How do you add rubrics to Canvas activities?

The Canvas rubric feature is available in any graded assignment, quiz or discussion. To add a rubric to one of these item types, the process is very similar but slightly different.


Troubleshoot Media Recordings

Both instructors and students have recently been encountering issues with using the Record Media tool in Canvas. When users try to record video in the Canvas interface, Flash does not load properly and they are left with a loading screen.

Screenshot of Flash loading page

Student Enrollment Changes

You may have noticed that you can no longer manually add students to Canvas courses. This change was implemented to adhere to the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act (FERPA) and Higher Learning Commission (HLC) standards. More information about student enrollment changes and how to add students to courses.


About the Blog

The Digital Teaching & Learning Blog is your resource for updates on Canvas and other useful academic technology tools. This is LATIS' way to provide you with news updates, how-to articles and much more! You will soon be able to subscribe to our e-newletter so you can stay up to date on teaching/learning with technology.