Canvas Adds Teacher App, Course Blueprints

Instructure has updated its Canvas learning management system with a new dashboard, a teacher app and more.

The new dashboard is called "To-Do List Dashboard" and offers a planner for students to organize and prioritize tasks and assignments across courses, identify missed opportunities and add other tasks as needed. Instructors can also add items to student to-do lists, such as announcements, non-graded discussions and pages. The teacher dashboard also offers a to-do list across multiple classes, a grading to-do list, adds to-do tasks to their calendars and allows teachers to make edits to assignments.

The teacher app "combines SpeedGrader with the most frequent Canvas teacher tasks in a purpose-built, role-specific mobile app that dramatically increases the ease of interactions with Canvas," according to a news release. "This new app helps teachers manage several high frequency tasks, including updating course content, communicating with students and grading."

A new feature dubbed "blueprint courses" offers templates for teachers to create courses and is designed to simplify management and deployment of centralized content for a consistent user experience among students across multiple courses.

The company has also updated gradebook with enhancements to accessibility such as keyboard navigation, improved menu organization for streamlined workflows, more automation and better communication with students.

Some of the updates are currently available, while others will become so throughout the year.

"We're always striving to provide teachers and students with the best learning experience possible through Canvas," said Mitch Benson, vice president of Canvas product at Instructure, in a prepared statement. "These new Canvas capabilities continue to simplify tasks to empower our users to focus on the things that truly matter inside and outside the classroom, and that's improving learning and helping students achieve their best."

In related news, the company has also released Gauge, an assessment management platform.

Designed for use in K-12 education, Gauge features data analytics and reporting, mobile access and IMS Global Learning Consortium compatibility. More information about Gauge is available at canvaslms.com/gauge.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at [email protected].