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Below is a suggested plan containing actions and resources designed to help you learn the elements of Canvas and make it easier to build your course and interact with students.

Available resources include live training events, short videos, links to resources, and information to access WSU personnel who can help you as you build your course(s) in Canvas.

Get Acquainted with Canvas

Become familiar with Canvas and the student experience.

Start Building your Course Structure in Canvas

Whether you’re building in your semester course space, or in your course sandbox, we suggest beginning with a few basic structural elements when getting started. In addition, we also have a recommended course template to help as you begin to build.

Note: For Global Campus courses, you will have an instructional designer to support your course design.

Suggested Actions

  • Build a home page (or fill out template).
  • Build an instructor introduction page (or fill out template).
  • Create Assignment Groups on the Assignments Index Page to match the grading table in your syllabus.
    • All gradable items will appear on the Assignments Index Page including Quizzes and Discussions.
    • This page determines what is in the gradebook.
  • Build a course schedule (or fill out template).
  • Decide and implement how the Modules Index Page will be organized (by Unit, by Week, etc.) and create Modules.
    • Students should access course content by selecting Modules. What experience do you want them to have when accessing this page?

To merge sections into a single course space, contact your department course scheduler or campus course scheduler. We suggest taking this action prior to building content into the course space.

Canvas Components

ComponentRelevant Links
Rich Content EditorWhat is the rich content editor?
Assignments Index PageHow do I use Assignments Index Page?
How do I add an Assignment Group?
NavigationHow do I use Course Navigation Menu as an Instructor?
How do I manage Course Navigation links?
PagesWhat are pages?
How do I set a front page?
How to publish a Page
ModulesWhat are modules?
How do I use the Modules Index Page?
How to publish a Module
InboxWhat is the inbox?
How do I use the inbox?
PublishingHow do I publish a course?
How do I publish or unpublish a module?
How do I publish or unpublish a page?

Suggested AOI Resources

AOI Training to Attend

Note: If you are receiving an error code when registering for training, please email aoi.li@wsu.edu to get you added to the system.

Start Building Content in Canvas

Once you have decided on the structure of your course, you are ready to start adding content!

Suggested Actions

  • Write a student to-do list based on the structure you decided for Modules (by week, unit, et).
  • Build content in Canvas.
    • Build content on a page – words, links, images, videos, etc.
    • Upload a file.
    • Add links to the to-do list and/or the Modules.
  • Build a simple assignment.
    • Include detailed instructions.
    • Use a due date.
    • Create and attach a
  • View assignments and turn them in from student view.
  • Build a Classic Quiz.
  • Build a Discussion.
  • Ensure that all gradable items are in the correct assignment group on the Assignments Index Page.

Canvas Components

ComponentRelevant Links
AssignmentsWhat are Assignments?
How to publish an Assignment
QuizzesWhat are Quizzes?
Understanding Classic vs New Quizzes functionality
What options can I set in a quiz?
FilesWhat are files?
How do I use Files?
DiscussionsWhat are discussions?
Review more specific questions and answer about Discussions.
How do I grade a graded discussion in SpeedGrader?
Modules How do I add course content as module items?
How do I add a text header as a module item?
How do I add an external URL as a module item?
GroupsWhat are groups?
How do I view all groups in a course?
How do I add a group set?
RubricsHow do I add a rubric in a course?
How do I add a rubric to an assignment?

Suggested AOI Resources

AOI Training to Attend

Note: If you are receiving an error code when registering for training, please email aoi.li@wsu.edu to get you added to the system.

Interact with Students in Canvas

Once your course is published, you can start interacting with students.

Suggested Actions

  • Create an Welcome Announcement and use announcements throughout the term.
  • Grade an assignment, discussion, or quiz using the SpeedGrader.
  • View your course as your students will see it using Student View.
  • Connect instantly with your students using Chat.
  • Create transparency of any changes or upcoming events using
  • Inform your students of any missing, or late work using the Message Students Who function in the Gradebook.

Canvas Components

ComponentRelevant Links
AnnouncementsWhat are Announcements?
How do I add an announcement in a course?
SpeedGraderWhat is SpeedGrader?
How do I use SpeedGrader?
How do I grade a file upload?
How do I add annotated comments?
Student ViewHow do I view my course as a test student?
ChatWhat is Chat?
Message Students Who...How to Message Students Who...
New AnalyticsNew Analytics in the Instructor Guide

Suggested AOI Resources

AOI Trainings to Attend

Note: If you are receiving an error code when registering for training, please email aoi.li@wsu.edu to get you added to the system.

Interact with Students using Other Integrations

Tools Already Integrated with Canvas

AOI Training to Attend

  • Perusall: Ensure your students are Reading
  • Panopto Basics
  • Panopto and Canvas
  • VoiceThread Basics
  • VoiceThread and Canvas
  • Zoom Updates and Advanced Implementations

Register for Educational Technology Tools training.

Important Resources