Canvas Updates

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<em><strong>Note:</strong> Crocodoc features are not available in the beta environment.</em>
<em><strong>Note:</strong> Crocodoc features are not available in the beta environment.</em>
<h1>Updated Features</h1>
<h1>Updated Features</h1>

Revision as of 15:43, 15 October 2014

Production Release Notes for Saturday, October 18, 2014


New Features


Incomplete Quiz Score Icon

When students complete a quiz that includes a manually graded question, the Grades page displays a Quiz icon instead of the current score, indicating that the quiz score is not yet complete. When students hover over the icon, students can view a message indicating that grading is in progress.

The Quiz icon displays in the Gradebook for instructors as well, indicating that some questions in the quiz need to be graded manually. When the instructor assigns a score for the manually graded question, the icon for both the instructor and the student will be replaced with the complete quiz grade.

Note: For instructors, the Quiz icon in the Gradebook can also mean that a Quiz score has been deleted and a new score needs to be assigned.



Copy of Created Conversations

Users can set a new notification preference that allows them to receive a copy of all conversations they created. When enabled by the user, this feature allows users to see what conversations have been sent and how they appear in their specified communication channels.

Note: When a user creates a group message and clicks the Send Individual Messages checkbox, Canvas generates only one notification for the sent message. Notifications cannot be sent from the beta environment.

Reminder: In Conversations, sent messages appear in the Sent folder. When a message receives a reply, the message thread will appear in the Inbox. When a user creates a group message and clicks the Send Individual Messages checkbox, the Sent folder displays one message for each user, as replies are treated as individual messages.



Crocodoc Session Expiration Warning

Instructors who use Crocodoc to annotate assignments in SpeedGrader receive a warning message when the Crocodoc session is about to expire. Crocodoc sessions are per submission and run for one hour; the expiration warning message appears after 50 minutes. The session begins when the submission preview appears in SpeedGrader. Any annotations made to the submission are saved automatically during the hour. This feature helps instructors be aware of the current Crocodoc session so they do not lose any of their work after the hour has expired. To create a new session, refresh the page or navigate to another submission.

Note: Crocodoc features are not available in the beta environment.


Updated Features


Locked Discussion Time Display

When a student views the details for a locked discussion topic, the displayed available date includes both the hour and the minute. Locked discussions are discussions that have been published by an instructor but cannot be viewed until a later date.



Questions and Groups Move-To Menu

Quiz questions and groups can be reordered using a keyboard navigation menu. This feature places a drag handle next to each quiz question or group. To view the keyboard navigation menu, instructors can click the handle next to a quiz question or group and move it within the quiz. Questions and groups can still be dragged and dropped manually by clicking and dragging the quiz question handles.

Quiz Preview Message

When an instructor previews a quiz, the preview message identifies whether or not the quiz has been published. If an instructor previews a quiz that has only been saved (not published), the quiz preview message shows that the preview is for the draft version of the quiz. However, if an instructor previews a quiz that has been published, the preview message shows that the preview is for the published version of the quiz.


Group Assignment Submissions

For group assignments, SpeedGrader shows submissions both from student groups and individual students. This feature allows instructors to view all submissions, especially for students who may not be in a group.


Other Updates


Calendar Color Brightness

The Canvas Calendar displays all courses in higher contrasting colors. However, accessibility users who need to view colors in a lower saturation can enable the High Contrast theme in User Profile Feature Options.



Course List Term Formatting

The Course List displays better formatting for term dates. When users view term dates as part of a course, the term is displayed as italicized light gray text.


Letter Grade Score Formatting

Letter grades throughout Canvas appear in a higher contrast. Previously, letter grades (and their percentage equivalents) appeared in a smaller and lighter format than other grades, making them more difficult to view. This change affects both regular and High Contrast user display settings. Letter grades and their percentages appear on the student Grades page and in the Gradebook (assignment score and total grade columns).




Korean has been removed as a crowd-sourced language in Canvas.


Fixed Bugs



Account Settings




Course Settings






User Dashboard



Turnitin Percentages

In Turnitin Advanced Settings, the Small Matches option retains the percentage set as part of the Less Than ___ of the Document text field.

Explanation: When an instructor created an assignment and enabled Turnitin, selected Advanced Options, and selected the Small Matches checkbox, the assignment did not retain the percentage set in the Less Than... text field. Canvas code has been updated to retain the percentage set for the Turnitin assignment.

Personal Files and Assignment File Types

If an instructor creates an assignment with restricted file submission types, students can only submit the file types specified in the assignment.

Explanation: When an instructor created an assignment with restricted file submission types, some students were still able to submit a restricted file type by uploading the file to their personal files and then submitting the assignment. Canvas code has been updated to honor restricted file types regardless of the source location of the submitted file. When a student tries to submit a restricted file type, Canvas will create an error message so the student knows why the submission is not accepted.



Undated Events and Languages

When a calendar event is created and saved on the More Options page, the calendar event is saved on the specified date.

Explanation: When users in any language except English, Spanish, and Dutch created a calendar event and used the More Options button to complete and save the event, the event was appearing in the calendar as an undated event. Canvas code has been updated to always create the event with the date and time.



Message Attachments in Internet Explorer 10

Users can send messages with an attachment when using Internet Explorer 10.

Explanation: When users attempted to send a message with an attachment using Internet Explorer (IE) 10, the message appeared to be sending but the message was never sent. Canvas code has been updated to verify attachment routing in IE10 to send messages properly.


Course Imports

Unpublished Quizzes

Unpublished quizzes retain their unpublished state in course imports.

Explanation: When a user imported an unpublished quiz and selected the Adjust Due Dates option, Canvas was separating the quiz into an assignment and a quiz upon import, which also broke the Assignments Index Page. Canvas code has been updated to never create a new assignment and retain the unpublished state of the quiz.

Module Items

Common Cartridge module imports select all associated module items.

Explanation: When an instructor imported Modules into a course, only the module name was included in the import; it did not contain any associated module items. Canvas code has been updated to include all module items as part of a module import.

Quiz Reimports

When a quiz is reimported into Canvas, quiz questions are only reimported into a question bank if the user checks the Overwrite Assessment Content with Matching IDs checkbox.

Explanation: When an instructor chose to re-import a quiz into Canvas, the import placed the questions in the question bank tied with the first version of the quiz, even if it had to replace a deleted question bank. Additionally, QTI file imports created a new quiz, and Common Cartridge files overwrote any edits to the existing quiz in the course, including the quiz title, description, and point values. Canvas code has been updated to not reuse question banks on import unless overwritten as part of the import.



Activity Stream Unpublished Discussions

Unpublished discussions do not appear in the activity stream.

Explanation: When an instructor created a new discussion that was not published, the unpublished discussion appeared in the course activity stream. Canvas code has been updated to clear the activity stream if a new or updated discussion is not published.

Scrollable Lists

The Upcoming and To Do sidebars are scrollable when there are multiple items.

Explanation: When a user had multiple items in the Upcoming and/or To Do sidebars, the items were being cut off in the list and were not scrollable. Canvas code has been updated to remove a sidebar container that blocked the columns from being scrollable.



Discussion Images

Discussion replies that include an image retain the image URL verifier.

Explanation: When a user posted a discussion reply and included an image whose URL parameters included a verifier, the verifier was removed from the image. This behavior occurred when users included a file that did not originate from the user’s personal files or from a link without a full host name and significantly affected users on the Canvas by Instructure app. Without a verifier, the image only displayed to the user who posted the image, and only if the user was logged in to the app. Canvas code has been updated to retain the image verifier from all user-context files. Verifiers for HTML content, media tags, and URL processing have also been distributed into their own focused verifier files.

Group Discussions

Graded group discussions with student submissions can be pinned or closed for comments.

Explanation: When an instructor tried to close or pin a graded group discussions that contained student submissions, the instructor was not able to move the discussion. Canvas code has been updated to allow changes in the state of a graded group discussion.


Global Navigation

Courses Menu

Users can open the Courses drop-down menu by clicking the Courses link.

Explanation: When a user clicked the Courses link in Global Navigation, Canvas opened to the Course List page. The Courses menu could only be viewed by hovering over the Courses link. Canvas code has been updated to open the link to the drop-down menu, which allows users on touch screens and mobile devices to access Courses & Groups.



Locked Discussions

Students cannot view discussions within a locked module.

Explanation: When an instructor adds a discussion to a module that is locked, either by prerequisites or availability date, the discussion could still be viewed by via module progression, direct URL, course activity, or the recent activity stream. Canvas code has been updated to match the module locked page used for assignments and quizzes to show the unlock date and time for the discussion.

Module Time Zones

When an instructor creates a module with an unlock date, all users view the module in their own time zone.

Explanation: When an instructor created a module with an unlock date (past or future), and another instructor with a different user time zone viewed the module, the first instructor’s time zone applied to the module date for all viewers. This behavior also applied to students, where the module applied the time zone of the first student to view the module. Canvas code has been updated to cache module views separately per time zone.



Profile Picture Thumbnails

Conversations notifications display a sender’s profile picture as a thumbnail image.

Explanation: Some Conversations notifications were generating profile pictures at the full size of the image, rather than a thumbnail version. Canvas code has been updated to always resize images as 50 px by 50 px and pull the source file from the sender’s profile URL.

Production Environment Notifications

Users can receive notifications from the Canvas production environment.

Explanation: When users enabled notifications in their production environment, notifications were not being sent from the account. Canvas code has been updated to properly find notification methods within the production environment.



Test Student Reset

Resetting the Test Student allows an instructor to unpublish a quiz.

Explanation: When an instructor reset the Test Student so that the course contained no visible submissions, the quiz was not able to be unpublished. Canvas code has been updated to remove all Test Student quiz submissions when the Test Student is reset.

Formula Questions

Formula questions that generate invalid results can be recomputed without refreshing the page.

Explanation: When an instructor entered a formula question that could result in an answer of zero, the results would never generate a possible solution and display an error message. Additionally, once the error message appeared, no additional solutions could be generated until the page was refreshed or a new question was created. Canvas code has been updated to invalidate the generated data so that additional definitions and recomputations are not ignored.

Correct Answers in Matching Questions

When an instructor edits a matching question, the correct answer is retained unless modified by the instructor.

Explanation: When an instructor edited a quiz by clicking the Show Details link for a matching question, updating the question saved the modified text as the correct answer regardless of whether the answer was originally correct. Canvas code has been updated to retain the original correct answer unless modified by the instructor as part of the question edit.

Shuffle Matching Questions

Matching questions shuffle the order of selectable drop-down quiz answers.

Explanation: When instructors created a matching quiz question and saved the quiz, the order of the questions and answers remained identical. Canvas code has been updated to shuffle the order of questions and answers for matching questions.

Numerical Answer Questions

Numerical answer questions accept zero as a possible exact answer.

Explanation: When an instructor created a numerical answer question and set the exact answer as zero, the answer was not saved with the question. Canvas code has been updated to accept zero as an exact answer variable.

Quiz Student Analysis Report

Quiz Student Analysis reports do not include HTML markup for quiz questions.

Explanation: When an instructor generated a student analysis report for a quiz, the CSV file included HTML markup from varied question types. Canvas code has been updated to disregard HTML markup in quiz answers as part of the student analysis report.

Quiz Timer Accuracy

The quiz timer always displays the correct time remaining for a quiz, even if students are not currently viewing the quiz page.

Explanation: When students viewed the time for a quiz, the timer was not displaying the correct time if a student switched to another page in their browser, causing instructors to incorrectly believe that students had extra time to complete a quiz. This behavior occurred when JavaScript updates were delayed on the inactivated Canvas quiz window. Canvas code has been updated with active cross-browser verification to accurately display quiz time and auto-submit quizzes when necessary.



Group Assignment Submissions

For group assignments, SpeedGrader shows submissions both from student groups and individual students.

Explanation: When students who were not in a group made a submission for a group assignment, the submission was received but could not be displayed by SpeedGrader. Canvas code has been updated to display both group and individual student submissions. This fix is promoted as an updated feature in the Canvas SpeedGrader.



Public User Views

Users who are not logged in to Canvas can view a syllabus if it is made public.

Explanation: When a user tried to access a public syllabus, the syllabus page would not display the list of assignments. Canvas code has been updated to confirm non-logged-in users as viewers for a public syllabus.



Last Activity Report

The Last Activity report only displays page views from available pages.

Explanation: When instructors viewed the Last Activity column for a user, the report showed access from page views that were unauthorized, such as for unpublished courses, or for courses with start and end override dates in the future. Canvas code has been updated to not record recent activity for unauthorized pages.


Next release schedule:

Note: You can follow the release schedule on the Canvas Updates calendar

Archived Canvas Updates
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