Updated Tools & Features to Try in Canvas

Behind the scenes, Canvas is updated regularly. Check out some of the updated tools and features available in MiraCosta College’s Canvas. (Note: The list below is intended to highlight the most significant changes – but many smaller updates occur frequently).

Summer 2018

  • New Gradebook – The New Gradebook is a beta feature that allows instructors to view an improved version of the Gradebook. This feature makes grading more flexible and intuitive. As of early fall 2018, each instructor interested in this must opt in; within the next 6 months this is likely to become the default Gradebook.
  • Quizzes.Next – Canvas’s new quiz/test assessment engine. Quizzes.Next will replace the original Quiz function in the near future (late fall 2018 or spring 2019, most likely). Quizzes.Next assessments are a particular type of Assignment rather than a distinct tool.
  • Turnitin LTI 2.0 Canvas Plagiarism Framework – An update to Turnitin available within Canvas that offers a tighter integration between a Canvas assignment and Turnitin, relying on Turnitin for plagiarism checking but using the native Canvas tools such as rubrics and speedgrader for assessment and feedback.
  • UDOIT – The Universal Design Online Content Inspection Tool, or UDOIT (“You Do It”) enables faculty to identify and correct many accessibility issues in their MiraCosta Canvas courses.
  • Dashboard List View – Students and instructors may change the Dashboard view to a list format with to-dos, feedback, and other activity organized by courses. Instructors can now set Pages and non-graded Discussions as to-do items. Students and instructors also may add their own personal to-dos to Canvas.

What is on the Horizon with Canvas?

New Canvas Gradebook

The New Gradebook is (as of August 2018) an opt-in feature that allows instructors an improved Gradebook experience. Check out the How do I use the New Gradebook? Canvas guide for an overview of the features this provides. It is expected that within the next 6-9 months, the original Gradebook will be removed and everyone will use the New Gradebook.

Opt in to the New Canvas Gradebook

Enable the New Gradebook

In MCC Canvas within a Canvas course:

  1. Click Settings at the bottom of your course menu
  2. Click the Feature Options tab
  3. Click the toggle button to the right of New Gradebook beta. The New Gradebook is on when the toggle button is green and a check mark is displayed.

New Gradebook Toggle-OnAccess the New Gradebook

In MCC Canvas with a Canvas Course:

  1. Click Grades (from the course menu)

New Gradebook View

New Gradebook Resources

  • How do I use the New Gradebook? – Getting Started with the new gradebook.
  • New Gradebook Guide – Table of Contents – All guides for the new gradebook for instructors and students.
  • Canvas Release: New Gradebook – The new gradebook is a beta feature that allows instructors to view an improved version of the gradebook. This feature makes grading more flexible and intuitive and elevates the gradebook user experience.
  • New Gradebook Users Group – This group contains existing information about the new gradebook including frequently asked questions, product feedback commentary, community discussions, bug reports, and known issues.

Turnitin LTI 2.0 Canvas Plagiarism Framework

As of summer 2018, an update to Turnitin is available within Canvas and offers a tighter integration between a Canvas assignment and Turnitin. No separate login or password is required for faculty or students. For fall 2018, Turnitin may be used within Canvas both via this updated method or via the previous method – see External tool vs. Plagiarism Framework for a comparison.

Eventually (perhaps by late fall 2018 or spring 2019) it is expected that Turnitin will only be available via the method described here. MiraCosta College has an unlimited license to Turnitin, GradeMark, and Peer Review.

Turnitin LTI 2.0 Canvas Plagiarism Framework

Turnitin LTI 2.0 Resources

Testing a Turnitin Assignment with your MCC Sample Student

Turnitin is an LTI tool that is globally installed on our Canvas system. LTI tools are not native to Canvas so they will not work in the internal Canvas Student View. You must log off of Canvas, as an instructor, then log on with your MCC Sample Student account. Now you will be able to experience a Turnitin assignment within your Canvas course as a student.

Additional information

Try These 10 Things To Fix Your Computer Problem Before You Call Support

Troubleshooting computer problems is part of modern life when you teach online. Before you make that support call, try your hand at fixing some of the most common problems yourself.

  1. Check your Course Management System (CMS) Status
    Is it a maintenance time? Or is  Canvas currently experiencing an outage?

    1. Canvas
  2. Clear Browser Cache (history, cookies, etc.)
    Clearing your browser cache often will resolve the problem by allowing your computer to download the latest version of the webpage and/or software.
  3. Try a Different Browser
    If you have cleared your browser cache and things are still not working as you expect try a different browser. Example: if you are using Chrome, try Firefox and visa versa. Ensure that your browsers are up to date. You can always download the latest version free online.

    1. Chrome
    2. Firefox
  4. Restart your Computer
    Many faculty and staff solve their problems with this simple step. Always a good option to try.
  5. Check your Internet Connection Speed
    A slow connection could be why your CMS system is running slow.  Share your result with your internet service provider as necessary to resolve.
  6. Enable Browser Cookies
    Cookies are small files which are stored on a user’s computer. They are designed to hold a modest amount of data specific to a particular client and website, and can be accessed either by the web server or the client computer. This allows the online server to deliver a page tailored to a particular user, or the page itself can contain some script which is aware of the data in the cookie and so is able to carry information from one visit to the website (or related site) to the next.
  7. Enable Java
    It strongly recommended to have the latest version to ensure proper functionality of our online systems.

    1. Review ‘What is Java and Why do I need it?
    2. Download Java
  8. Manage Pop-Up Blockers
    Pop-up windows, or pop-ups, are windows that appear automatically without your permission. They vary in size but usually don’t cover the whole screen. They are often required for certain online website applications to work properly.
  9. Make sure that your Operating System is fully updated. 
    Neglecting updates could deprive you of important bug and performance fixes.

    1. Apple Computer
    2. PC Computer 
  10. Check your Device Settings
    This is a great tool to identify what is on your computer, browser version, plugins, etc. This tool can help you update your computer yourself, and/or can be provided to tech support to assist you further with troubleshooting.
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