Teaching Effectively in Canvas

Teach Easier. Teach Better. In Canvas.

Teaching Effectively in Canvas is a new Faculty Engagement program designed to help make good teaching easier for instructors. It is comprised of four guided face-to-face workshops, with multiple sessions offered of each workshop. Each of the two-hour workshops focuses on a different aspect of teaching and learning and the Canvas tools that align with them, with activities designed to guide instructors through the creation of necessary elements. It is recommended that you attend all four workshops ideally in order, but you benefit from attending any.

Participants will:

  • Apply what they have learned in their own Canvas sandbox or course space, including:
    • student-centered navigation practices such as clear and concise Syllabus pages, Calendar-scheduled Assignment pages, and clearly-articulated learning objectives
    • peer-to-peer learning and communication venues, such as peer review, group spaces and discussions, and collaborative Google document work
    • distributed learning frameworks, such as outcome-connected rubrics, learning objective-reinforcing quizzes and surveys, and student metacognitive prompts and reflections
    • UDL-inspired assignments that allow for personalized learning options via multiple means of content representation, student engagement, and expression of learning
  • Work on their own course design, leaving each session with some preliminary course design work finished, and experience accessing and applying paper and online resources that can guide them beyond the session
  • Engage with a variety of demonstrations and models and evaluate which would be useful in their own course


Course Design: This workshop integrates Backwards Design, Design Thinking, and Universal Design for Learning into a unified framework that focuses teaching on essential learning objectives, while providing opportunities for students to connect their prior experiences and personal learning preferences with course content — in a way that is manageable for instructors. Teach smarter in Canvas!

Assessment: The Assessment workshop helps you develop and apply smart assessment strategies to your course objectives. Learn to get and give good feedback that strengthens student learning through proven methods of distributed practice and low stakes assignments — and do it more efficiently than you imagined, in Canvas! Participants will learn and evaluate approaches and discuss realistic application using a variety of Canvas tools including rubrics, Speedgrader and peer evaluations.

Social Learning: In addition to providing methods and examples to enlist students in teaching and learning from each other with Canvas, the workshop also explores current research on creating effective and productive blended and online social learning experiences. Participants will evaluate strategies for facilitating productive online discussions and gain experience with a variety of collaborative tools in Canvas.

Individual Learning: This workshop offers examples and practices in Canvas that facilitate individual student engagement with course content, practice, and reflection. Individual work can ensure that students come to class prepared to interact with instructors and classmates. Participants will review and discuss models and examples of ways to use Canvas to increase individual learning.

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Last Updated: Wed October 25, 2017

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