Canvas FAQ's

Canvas is UW-Parkside's learning management system (LMS). Canvas is where instructors can build and house online content such as readings, online assignments, quizzes, and discussions. Below is a list of the most important information about the standard procedures regarding Canvas.

Faculty & Staff FAQ's

 

No. There are no longer formal course requests in Canvas. All live courses will automatically appear in Canvas 30 days before the start of the semester, however, instructors can request that content be copied into their live courses and can also request that sandboxes be created by emailing innovations@uwp.edu.

  • Sandbox: A Canvas sandbox is basically a course shell that students do not have access to. Sandboxes are used to build content in a space that can be reset, changed, and without the worry of students seeing any in-progress content. Sandboxes will not be deleted unless requested by the instructor. Sandboxes can remain active as long as the instructor wants to save that content. Sandboxes will also not be created unless requested by the instructor, so if an instructor wants to begin working on a new course, they should request a sandbox by emailing innovations@uwp.edu.
     
  • Live Course: Live courses are the courses that are tied to Solar, are tied to a specific semester, and are the courses that students have access to. Live courses automatically come into Canvas 30 days before the first day of class and the instructor can choose whether or not to make that course visible to students or not by "publishing" that course. Live courses will only stay in Canvas for one year, after this year, they will be automatically deleted. If an instructor wants to keep the content from a live course for more than a year, they should request a sandbox. That way, the live course content can be transferred into the sandbox that won't be deleted.

There are a few different ways to tell the difference between a sandbox and a live course. The main difference will be the course card on the Canvas dashboard. By default, live courses will come into Canvas with the name that they have in Solar and they will have a semester listed underneath the course code. Sandboxes will not have a semester listed and will have "SANDBOX" in both the course title and course code.

Below is an example of what a sandbox will look like on a course dashboard vs what a live course will look like on a course dashboard. The sandbox is on the left and the live course is on the right.

sandbox vs live course

Sandboxes and live courses are two separate types of courses. A sandbox cannot be changed into a live, however, the content from a sandbox can be copied into a live course. To copy content from your sandbox into a live course, instructors can either email innovations@uwp.edu and make a request or follow these instructions: How to Copy Canvas Content

When live courses come in from Solar 30 days from the first day of class, instructors can choose to publish their live course at any point after that time. Publishing a course means that students can see the course and can view the content that has been made visible. If a course is left unpublished, students will not see that course in Canvas at all. Please click on the following link for instructions on how to publish a course: How to Publish a Course

Instructors can choose to publish and unpublish specific modules and content items in a Canvas course. Like with publishing a course, students can only see modules and content if the instructor has chosen to publish it. Anything that should be hidden from students should be made unpublished. Unpublishing modules works on a hierarchy system, so if a module is unpublished, students cannot see anything within the module. Click on the following link for instructions on how to publish or unpublish content and modules: Publish Modules and Content

If you need a course to be added to Canvas that is not tied to Solar, such as a training course or a workshop, please email innovations@uwp.edu and the Innovations team will help you get the course set up in Canvas!

Canvas offers 24/7 tier 1 technical support by phone, email, and online chat. Canvas support is the best way to ensure immediate assistance. To access Canvas technical support, click on the Help icon on the bottom left of the main Canvas navigation bar. Instructors can also contact the UW-Parkside Help Desk for support or email innovations@uwp.edu. Instructors can also visit the Canvas Guides. The Canvas Guides are a searchable knowledgebase full of written and video tutorials on every tool in Canvas.

There are a handful of amazing resources available for faculty and staff regarding Canvas.

  • Canvas Training: Canvas Training is offered at various times throughout the semester as well as one-on-one training sessions. A list of upcoming training sessions can be found here. To sign-up for Canvas training, please click on the link below or email innovations@uwp.edu for more information.
    Sign-Up for Canvas Training
  • Canvas Resources Course: Faculty and staff have the option to be enrolled into an online Canvas training & instructional technology resource course which is full of resources and video tutorials. Faculty and staff can self-enroll into this resource course by clicking on the following link.
    Self-Enroll in the Resource Course
  • Canvas Guides: Instructors also have access to the Canvas Guides. This is a searchable knowledgebase full of documents on just about everything in Canvas!
    Search the Canvas Guides

Yes, Canvas will automatically log you out of the system after 24 hours of inactivity. It is highly suggested that after using Canvas, you manually log out using the "Logout" button or by closing out of your browser completely.

Student FAQ's

 

While there isn't formal Canvas training for students, there are multiple resources available that walk-through almost every aspect of Canvas from a student perspective. These resources include:

  • Canvas Student Resources Course: The Canvas Student Resources course is a course in Canvas full of video and written tutorials, Parkside resources, and information on various tools used in Canvas. You can self-enroll into this course by clicking the link below! When you enroll into this course, it should appear on your Canvas dashboard like the rest of your courses!
    Self Enroll in the Canvas Student Resources Course
  • Canvas Interactive Tutorial: Below is a link to an interactive Canvas tutorial that walks through most of the tools that will be used in Canvas. The tutorial is self-paced and you can skip to the areas of the tutorial that you need help with specifically.
    Canvas Interactive Tutorial
  • Canvas Guides: Students also have access to the Canvas Guides. This is a searchable knowledgebase full of documents on just about everything in Canvas!
    Search the Canvas Guides

Canvas offers 24/7 tier 1 technical support by phone, email, and online chat. Canvas support is the best way to ensure immediate assistance. To access Canvas technical support, click on the Help icon on the bottom left of the main Canvas navigation bar. Students can also contact the UW-Parkside Help Desk for support by calling 262.595.2444 or by visiting them in Wyllie L107. Students can also visit the Canvas Guides. The Canvas Guides are a searchable knowledgebase full of written and video tutorials on every tool in Canvas.

There are a few reasons why a course might not show up in Canvas. Below is a list of the most common reasons why a course might not appear in Canvas:

  • When You Enrolled: Canvas has an integration with Solar, and this integration means that when you enroll into a course in Solar, you will automatically be added to the course in Canvas 24-48 hours after you enrolled through Solar. You will not see a course in Canvas before that 24-48 hours.
  • Your Instructor Might Not Be Using Canvas: Not all instructors choose to use Canvas. It is not mandatory that a course have online content, so if you're in a face-to-face course and are concerned that you can't find that course in Canvas, ask your instructor if they plan on using Canvas. However, if you're looking for a fully online course or you know that your instructor is using Canvas and the 48 hours has past, please contact Canvas Tier 1 Support by clicking on the Help button on the grey navigation bar in Canvas.
  • The Course Might Not Be Published: As stated above, instructors can choose if a course will be in Canvas, but they also can choose when students can see that course. Again, contacting the instructor is the best way to find out if they intend on using Canvas or not, but you can also click on the "My Courses" icon on the Canvas navigation bar. From here you can see if a course is published or not. Here is a link to a tutorial on how to view if a course is published or not.

Not necessarily. Instructors can choose whether or not they activate a course in Canvas, so it's very possible that you will have a course that doesn't have any online content. if you're ever wondering if a couese will be in Canvas or not, it doesn't hurt to ask your instructor!

Yes, Canvas will automatically log you out of the system after 24 hours of inactivity. It is highly suggested that after using Canvas, you manually log out using the "Logout" button or by closing out of your browser completely.

Scroll to top