From e-Learning Documentation
Production Release Notes for Saturday, September 27, 2014
Quiz Regrade Gradebook History
Instructors can view scores for regraded quizzes in the Gradebook history. This feature allows instructors to view all grading events in the same location and see historical data for any regraded quizzes. The Gradebook history shows how many changes were made and the before and after quiz scores.
Copy of Announcement to Sender
Instructors can set a new notification preference that allows them to receive a copy of all announcements they created. This feature allows instructors to see what announcements have been sent and how they appear in their specified communication channels. If users are allowed to respond to announcements, this notification preference also sends notifications for announcement replies.
Sender Email Addresses
Canvas does not display a sender’s email address as part of external notifications. However, admins can choose to show sender email addresses in Account Settings. Enabling the Show the email address checkbox will show a sender’s email address for all notifications sent from the account.
When enabled, sender email addresses appear in user-interaction notifications for conversations, discussions, announcements, and their associated replies. Note: Not all notifications display the sender’s email address.
When joining a conference, users are asked how they want to join the conference audio: via microphone or a listen-only mode. Microphone users must grant access to their browser for microphone use, but the browser makes the process easy by prompting users for permission. To ensure users enter the conference with a working microphone, users are prompted to test their microphone and can choose a different microphone if needed.
Users of Firefox and Chrome have improved audio within the conference via Web Real-Time Communications (WebRTC) technology support. Users of Internet Explorer and Safari continue to participate with existing Flash-based audio.
Moderators have improved functionality and control for recording conferences. Instead of starting the recording immediately after the first user has joined, conferences includes a start/stop button so moderators can control the length of the recording. After joining the conference and setting up their microphone, moderators receive a reminder notifying them that they can record the meeting, but they must click the recording button to start the recording. When users start or stop a recording, users will always be prompted to confirm the action.
Moderators can lock down specific features so they are not available during a conference. Located in the Users Settings menu, this functionality helps moderators control the conference environment, such as locking private chat to prevent students from collaborating during a test.
Users benefit from other added enhancements in conferences:
- The chat text window supports HTML and XML characters.
- The Text tool accepts the enter/return key.
- When uploading a presentation, the upload dialog window displays UTF-8 filenames (such as Chinese characters).
- Moderators can raise their hand in the conference with other participants. Located next to the User Settings button, this feature is good for group discussions where everyone may have access to the conference as a moderator.
Address Book Scroll Bar
When composing a new message in Conversations, users can click and drag the scrollbar to access user data. They can also use keyboard navigation to locate recipients.
Message Time Stamps
When users view a Conversation message thread, each message contains a full date stamp, including the time and year.
Non-administrative users whose accounts are created via SIS do not have access to delete their own accounts. When users edit their profile settings, they can only see a Delete My Account link if they have no SIS ID or are an account administrator. If non-admins with SIS IDs try to delete their accounts via the Users API, the API call returns a 401 (unauthorized) error.
Bounced Communication Warnings
Canvas does not send notifications to communication channels that have bounced, which means the channel can no longer attempt to generate or send a notification. Bounces can occur from invalid addresses (caused by address typos, changed addresses, etc.) or blocked servers.
Users are notified in Canvas when one of their communication channels has bounced. If a user is on a Canvas page outside of their User Settings, Canvas displays a warning banner at the top of their browser window.
In User Settings, the bounced contact method displays a warning icon. To correct the error, users should remove then re-add the method to their profile.
- For errors with email addresses, the warning banner only appears if the email address was added manually by the user. If a user’s email address was added via SIS import, Canvas only displays warning icons on the User Settings page.
- Canvas requires a default email address that cannot be removed. If an error occurs with the default email address, add a new email address as a temporary default, then correct the error with the existing email.
The Assignments link no longer appears in Global Navigation. This change helps streamline the user experience and encourages users to interact with additional areas of their courses. Data shows that the majority of users already navigate to courses before assignments, meaning they prefer to look at assignments in the context of the course. Users can still see a comprehensive view of all upcoming assignments and events in the Agenda view of the Calendar.
We’ve made some design changes to improve the global header and navigation menus throughout the Canvas interface. These changes help improve accessibility within Canvas and allow for future design enhancements. Some changes may affect institutions with custom CSS.
CSS has been adjusted in the following areas:
- Global Header & Navigation Menu (Help Corner): Replaced background textures with solid colors. This change is directly referenced as background-color and should not affect custom CSS (background: and background-color: will both overwrite the Canvas default). Drop-shadow was also taken off the Account Navigation box.
- Courses & Groups Drop-down Menu: Minimized style with updated background color, no borders around the links, and an adjustment to the menu’s drop shadow. This change should not affect custom CSS.
- User Navigation: Minimized style in all navigation areas (user, course, and account navigation) with a small chance of affecting custom CSS in the following areas:
- Border-bottom on item list. If institutions want to keep this design it must be added into the custom CSS, for example: border-bottom: 1px solid #fff;
- Background color. The background color matches the body background. If institutions are not calling out a specific background or background-color on the <ul id="section-tabs"> in the left-side navigation, the color must be added into the custom CSS.
- Background color on :active and :hover states. The background color for both of these states has changed. The background color is a dark gray; active and hover states are a white background with blue link. If both :active and :hover states are called out directly, custom CSS should not be affected.
- Content Sidebars and Page Footer: Replaced background texture with background color (same as User Navigation background color).
Note: The High Contrast user setting should not be affected and display the dark background on active and hover with white text; disabled links will now have a gray background with the dark link.
The Quizzes Index Page is optimized for enhanced performance and speed. This improvement was released to production on 09/15/14.
Users can set extensions for student quiz submissions in the Quiz Extensions API.
Users can access quiz statistics in the Quiz Statistics API.
The following accessibility issues have been corrected within Canvas:
- Overall dialog window design has been improved for screen readers. The ‘role=”dialog” has been removed from dialog boxes unless the dialog contains only navigable elements (i.e. links and form controls). Opening/closing tags have also been rearranged to keep them in the same file.
- On each page, headers in the main content area appear before headers in the sidebars.
- The alt-text of the “By Instructure” browser footer matches the image.
- The Add a New User and Add a New Course buttons include roles for screen readers.
- The Quotas tab and fields contain labels for screen readers.
- Quota field titles can be read by screen readers.
- The Account Settings page contains an H1 tag.
- The Admin Tools tab contains an H1 heading and improved search field labels for screen readers.
- The View Notification tab reads notifications to screen readers.
- Assignment submission notifications are read by screen readers.
- Calendar Week and Month View buttons displays a warning message that informs keyboard users about Agenda View.
- The < and > arrows in the mini calendar are hidden from screen readers.
- Calendar Agenda view automatically closes popover text when a keyboard user tabs away from an event field.
- Conversations informs keyboard users how to open a message.
- Course Settings navigation contains a Move To dialog for moving content within a list. The screen reader navigation instructions have been simplified and are also available to keyboard users.
- Feature Options descriptions can be expanded and read by screen readers.
- Feature Options includes an updated key for translation.
- To Do sidebar displays a color contrast of 3:1 for the default Canvas interface and 4.5:1 for high contrast profiles.
- The Courses & Groups drop-down menu displays meets a color contrast of 3:1 for the default Canvas interface and 4.5:1 for high contrast profiles.
- Course invitation notifications are read by screen readers.
- Discussion titles contain three headings for screen readers.
- Text in Discussion replies display a stronger color contrast.
- The Learning Mastery Gradebook skip to content option directs screen readers to Individual View.
- After moving a module with the Move menu option, the moved module retains keyboard focus.
- The People page includes scope attributes on table heading tags and no longer includes empty table headings.
- Quiz editing notifications are read by screen readers.
- The browser window footer Zendesk support image is hidden from screen readers.
- The Syllabus table displays a color contrast of 3:1 for the default Canvas interface and 4.5:1 for high contrast profiles.
In Account Settings, setting the Open Enrollment option to Never disables open enrollment in all courses within the account.
Explanation: When an admin changed the Open Enrollment setting to Never, the option was not disabled in any courses where open enrollment was previously set up or disabled in any course exports. Canvas code has been updated to restrict open enrollment in courses when disabled at the account level.
Account-level Group Names
Admins can edit the name of an account-level group. Explanation: When admins tried to edit the name of an account-level group, the dialog box was not saving the name or disappearing from the page. Canvas code has been updated to properly save the name of the account group.
When an enrollment is generated as Invited via the enrollment API, the enrollment state displays as Active. Explanation: When an enrollment was generated as Invited, the status was not displaying as Active, even if it was removed and re-created. Canvas code has been updated to allow users to re-create enrollments and display them as Active status.
The Groups API shows how to invite users to a group using the correct syntax. Explanation: The API documentation example showed a form line indicating a user could set multiple invitees in the form if joined with an ampersand, which is an incorrect syntax. Canvas code has been updated to correct the API documentation.
Assignment Group Sets
Instructors can grade group assignment submissions even if the group set has been deleted.
Explanation: When an instructor created a group assignment then deleted the assignment group set, SpeedGrader was generating an error message because the assignment was no longer linked to its associated group set. In student view, students were not able to upload an assignment with the correct group, which created confusion. Canvas code has been updated to allow group submissions to be graded even if the group set has been deleted and no longer affect student submissions.
Letter Grade Assignments
When an instructor creates a letter grade, GPA, or percentage grading-type assignment with no points possible, Canvas generates a warning message that the assignment must be assigned more than zero points.
Explanation: When an instructor chose to set a letter grade, GPA, or percentage grading-type assignment with no points possible, the Gradebook was generating an error as all assignments need a point value to factor into the total grade. This behavior caused scenarios where instructors set a point value for the assignment, causing all previously set letter grades to be overwritten as failing scores. Canvas code has been updated to generate a warning message in the points field for specific grading types.
24-Hour Time Format
For non-English languages, calendar 24-hour time formats display time as AM or PM.
Explanation: When a non-English language was set to a 24-hour time format, the Calendar was not correctly converting times to AM or PM. Canvas code has been updated to convert 12-hour format strings when localized into a 24-hour format.
Course End Date
Courses are only concluded by a course end date if the Users can only participate in the course between these dates checkbox is selected.
Explanation: If an instructor sets an end date before the term end date and selects the Users...dates checkbox, the course end date was overridden with the term end date. Canvas code has been updated to confirm the course end date when the participation checkbox is enabled.
Edited Discussion Replies
When a user edits a discussion reply, Canvas displays the original reply date instead of the edited post date.
Explanation: When a user had permission to edit a discussion reply, Canvas was showing the edited date instead of the original reply date. Canvas code has been updated to continue to display the original reply date.
Graded Discussions SpeedGrader Link
For graded discussions, when an instructor clicks the Open in SpeedGrader option next to a student post, SpeedGrader opens the student’s submission.
Explanation: When an instructor opened a graded discussion and clicked the Open in SpeedGrader option next to a student post, SpeedGrader opened the first student in the list of students whose discussions need to be graded. Canvas code has been updated to confirm anchor tags and links to all specific student discussions.
User Profile Link
Users can view their profile page after creating a new ePortfolio.
Explanation: When users created new ePortfolios and then tried to click the link to their profile page, Canvas generated an unauthorized page. Canvas code has been updated to link users to their own profile page, and for viewing as a public ePortfolio, to the user’s ID page.
Grading Scheme Percentages
Scores entered in the Gradebook as a percentage reflect the percentage score assigned in the grading scheme.
Explanation: When an instructor attempted to assign a percentage score, the grading scheme rounded the score incorrectly. Canvas code has been updated to retain percentages as entered in the Gradebook and support rounding to the nearest hundredth.
Grading Scheme Decimals
Scores entered into the Gradebook as a decimal reflect the percentage score assigned in the grading scheme and support rounding to the nearest tenth.
Explanation: When an instructor attempted to assign a decimal score, the grading scheme rounded the score incorrectly. This behavior especially related to decimal scores between letter grades. Canvas code has been updated to retain decimals as entered in the Gradebook.
Instructors can update complete/incomplete grades in the Gradebook.
Explanation: When an instructor viewed a complete/incomplete assignment in the Gradebook and changed a student’s grade, the Gradebook was displaying an error message. Canvas code has been updated to properly support complete/incomplete scores in the Gradebook.
The Modules Move To… option does not display the current module.
Explanation: When a user opens a module’s Settings menu and selects the Move To… option, the module included the currently selected module. Canvas code has been updated to disregard the current module in move commands.
Announcement Reply Notifications
Users receive external notifications for announcement replies.
Explanation: When users set their notifications to receive Announcements, any replies to an announcement were not triggering external notifications. Canvas code has been updated to send notifications for announcement replies.
Notification Email Replies
Users can reply to external notifications through their email. Explanation: In a previous release, notifications included a message indicating that users can reply directly to the notification email. Canvas code has been updated to retain this message in notifications emails.
Question Bank Duplicate Questions
Editing a question in a question bank with more than 50 questions does not create duplicate questions.
Explanation: When a question bank has at least one named question and 51+ questions in it (enough to trigger the More Questions link), and a question is edited in the question bank, the question bank created a duplicate question. Canvas code has been updated to specify quiz variables for quiz questions and isolate changes made to question banks.
When viewing quiz results, given answers for Fill-In-Multiple-Blank equation questions are displayed in the answer box.
Explanation: When users viewed quiz results for a fill-in-multiple-blank equation quiz question, the answer field was not displaying the answer for the equation. Canvas code has been updated to properly process equation objects and display the correct function result.
Quiz Question Character Limit
When quiz questions exceed the character limit, Canvas generates a warning message.
Explanation: When instructors created or edited a quiz question that exceeded the character limit, such as when copying and pasting from Word, Canvas displayed an unknown error. The character limit for quizzes is 16384 characters. Canvas code has been updated with a warning message about the character limit
Quiz Numerical Entries
Quiz questions support commas in numerical entry fields.
Explanation: When a user entered a numerical answer that included a comma, the entry field was converting the comma to a decimal, resulting in an incorrect answer value. This behavior occurred for both numerical and formula question types. Canvas code has been updated to support commas in quiz entry fields.
Users cannot select a profile picture if it can’t be edited.
Explanation: When a student clicked the public profile picture of another user, Canvas generated an unauthorized page. Canvas code has been updated to only select a profile pictures if it can be edited by the requested user.
Next release schedule:
- Production release and documentation: 9/27/14
- Beta release and notes: 10/06/14
- Production release notes: 10/13/14
- Production release and documentation: 10/18/14
Note: You can follow the release schedule on the Canvas Updates calendar