Canvas was the right choice for us!
September 18, 2015

Canvas was the right choice for us!

Kris Bickell | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Canvas

Canvas is the Learning Management System at our university. All online courses are taught on Canvas, and campus courses can also utilize Canvas, as decided upon by the instructor.
  • Canvas is very user-friendly and well organized. It is easy for students to find their courses, and easy for faculty to put their course materials into Canvas. Most faculty & students learn how to use Canvas very quickly.
  • Canvas is very flexible, both on an admin and course level. It makes integration with third-party tools very simple, to allow faculty to utilize tools such as plagiarism detection, test monitoring, video editing, etc. Faculty can design their courses in several ways, to meet their teaching needs. Admins can set permissions for a variety of different types of users. All can be done quickly & easily.
  • Canvas support & documentation is excellent. The Canvas guides are always up to date, easy to follow, and contain visuals to help users understand the various features & components of Canvas. Their support staff are very knowledgeable, and help answer questions and resolve issues very quickly. Each support agent has access to our account, so they can provide support for very specific questions and issues.
  • Each institution has their own customer success manager. This is a huge benefit, to have someone at Canvas be an advocate when issues arise, to understand your needs, and to be a point of contact for serious matters.
  • Canvas is updated every 3 weeks, which is helpful for fixing bugs & issues. And even though they provide clear documentation well ahead of time, it still does make it hard to train faculty & students since some features change in the middle of a semester or course.
  • The Canvas roadmap needs to be more transparent. They are working on improving this, but it would be helpful to know which components they are working on and where they stand on the development timeline.
  • Since Canvas is so community oriented, it would be helpful to have representation on the direction of the software. There are forums to make feature requests and make comments about upcoming releases, but it would be great if some of us could work with Canvas to have these discussions before a change is planned.
  • We have found that more faculty are using Canvas than our previous LMS, largely due to it's intuitive interface.
  • While Canvas is not significantly cheaper than the competition, we found that it offers more built-in features than the other products we reviewed.
  • For a small institution like ours, having a cloud hosted LMS is much more effective than running a self hosted product. We don't need to have a large staff to support Canvas, nor do we have to outsource the operation as we did in the past.
We felt that Canvas had the most modern interface, was the simplest to use, offered the best support, and offered the most features. The others products are all very good, but for our needs Canvas offered the most value for an institution our size and with our set of needs.
Changing to a new LMS, especially after using one for years, is a challenging process. Canvas is very helping during the investigation process, and during the implementation process, to make the transition easier. I would encourage any institution that is considering Canvas to ask as many questions as possible during the selection process.