Canvas is great for us!!!
September 18, 2015

Canvas is great for us!!!

Jason C. Munn | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Canvas

We use Canvas for our college courses. Canvas is our online learning management system. We use it for content delivery in our physical classes, as well as assessment items (quizzes, exams, discussion boards, projects) and grades. It is extremely useful for helping instructors to maintain organized and effective content delivery and allow prompt and easy communication between students and instructors. Students are always aware of what is due and when those items are due. Students can also view their current grades in real time, so they should be aware of their current progress throughout their semester. Canvas allows for a lot of interaction online and is great for engaging students in and out of the classroom.
  • Grades are available in real time to the students and can be checked any time, if instructors are current in their grading.
  • Automated grading of quizzes and exams. This saves so much time for instructors like me.
  • Allows students to access course materials and course content 24 hrs a day, 7 days a week. If a student misses class, he or she can still keep up by accessing and completing materials in Canvas.
  • We also use the Respondus Lockdown Browser, which allows particular Canvas quizzes & exams to be taken online through a special browser that locks the screen of the computer so other sites, programs, files, etc cannot be accessed during the test. This is a very proactive approach to prevent cheating.
  • The question banks and management of the question banks is a bit clunky. Questions get duplicated for reasons I cannot figure out. Also, duplicating quizzes is not possible to my knowledge.
  • Randomizing the order of questions on a quiz is not an option.
  • Having a quiz randomly pull from a test bank of questions is also not an option.
  • Being able to view all of the question details on each question when a quiz has more than 25 questions would be great.
  • Ending (terminating) a student's quiz attempt manually is not an option.
  • Student retention rates are higher.
  • Grade averages have risen.
  • Student engagement is better.
  • Negative - It takes A LOT of time and work to thoroughly design a course in Canvas. Instructors face mountains of work to get the course ready. Positive - however, once the course is designed and implemented, running/teaching the course a 2nd or 3rd time becomes quite easy and much less stressful.
The decision to use Canvas was not mine; however, I happily use it. I have used Blackboard before and that is a great LMS. Prior to Canvas, we used Moodle here at SAE Nashville. Moodle (at least the version we used) was odd looking, difficult to interface with, and was limited in flexibility and options. Canvas is much more intuitive and easy for instructors to learn and implement. Also, from an administrative perspective, Canvas is easy to trouble shoot and provides numerous ways to compile statistical data and access reports.
Canvas is a new LMS, so there are always new and innovative features being added. I expect it to continue to improve. We are just starting to experiment with HTML and CSS and the possibilities of coding in Canvas to enhance the courses for our students. Canvas also resembles the look and function of social media sites (such as Facebook) and I think that lends itself to some appeal among young adult students. The ability to create a profile & ePortfolio, to message instructors & students, to keep a calendar in Canvas, to connect their cell phones to Canvas notifications and use the Canvas app on their cell phones, all appeal greatly to younger, tech savvy adults, which is the majority of our student population.