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Using Canvas

Quick Overview

Login to Canvas

  • See full list of CETL Canvas Support opportunities
  • For best performance, open Canvas with a modern web browser. TIP: Turn off extensions and 3rd-party browser tools when troubleshooting.
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Migration Timetable

CANVAS for Teachers
All courses will be taught in Canvas Spring 2022. Course content created prior to Summer 2021 has already been transfered into Canvas and is available now for Instructor access. Migrate Summer 2021 and Fall 2021 yourself if you need this content for the Spring 2022 semester. Request to Add a New Course to Canvas.

Spring 2022 official empty course shells are available in Canvas now. Fill out our Merge Course Request Form to ask to have multiple sections of a course combined into a single Canvas course space.

Login to Canvas         

CANVAS for Students
Students will be added to the Spring 2022 classes in Canvas on January 3, 2022. Students may login to Canvas now and go through the Canvas student training course, Passport to Canvas, to preview the new LMS environment. Teachers: Remember to Publish each Canvas Course to give students access.

Course and Enrollment Changes

Feed File pushes from Banner into Canvas occur daily starting at 5am, 10am, and 3pm. These take less than an hour to complete once started.


BbLearn will not be available to login to after March 1, 2022. Instructors should use the Fall 2021 semester to setup their courses in Canvas for Spring 2022.

Canvas Support

Canvas offers 24/7/365 support to TEACHERS and STUDENTS. Click on Help at the bottom of the Canvas left menu to view your available options. Contact for U of I assistance.

Migrate Content

Many past BbLearn courses have already been migrated over to Canvas. Review your migrated BbLearn courses carefully. Although much of the course content transfers into Canvas correctly, some tools (such as Journals and Rubrics) will have to be added by you.

  • Much of the 2018 through Spring 2021 course content stored in BbLearn has already been migrated over to Canvas. However, if course content you are looking for does not appear in Canvas, please migrate it over yourself.
  • Summer 2021 and Fall 2021 course content will be migrated into Canvas mid-Feb 2022 via an automated process. If you need this content to teach a Spring 2022 course, please migrate your course content from BbLearn into Canvas yourself following the steps below.
  • If you need course content from a BbLearn course taught prior to 2018, please email for assistance.
  • Use this request form to Add a New Course Shell to Canvas.

Step 1

Request a [PREP] Course in Canvas to import your course content into.

Step 2

Exporting from BbLearn

Video: Export from BbLearn (7 min)

Step by Step: Export from Blackboard

Step 3

Importing into Canvas

Video: Import into Canvas (6 min)

Step by Step: Import into Canvas

Tip for Macintosh Users
If using Safari on a Macintosh, do not let the browser automatically unpack the exported ZIP file created in Step 1 (above). Follow our help on downloading ZIP files via Safari to prevent this BEFORE exporting from BbLearn.

BbLearn Last Access Date is March 1, 2022

BbLearn will be unavailable after March 1, 2022

  • Incomplete Grades – With the transition to Canvas, BbLearn will not be available in 2022 for students to complete coursework. Incompletes for any classes in Fall 2021 or any earlier semester must be handled outside of BbLearn. Please plan accordingly.
    An incomplete may only be assigned when the student has been in attendance and doing passing work within three weeks of the close of the semester (or within one week of the close of summer session). The student and instructor must agree upon the incomplete grade and the extenuating circumstances that made it impossible to complete the course on time. Office of the Registrar
  • Accreditation Artifacts such as student work (for programmatic accreditors) and/or individual student performance on course-level assessments for faculty reports on General Education or Program Learning Outcomes should be downloaded from BbLearn before March 1, 2022.
  • Inform Students to retain past BbLearn assignments for their records.
  • If you will need Access to Past BbLearn Data for Research, download this data before March 1, 2022.
  • If you need a Course from 2018 through Spring 2021 that has not already been migrated, please migrate it yourself prior to March 1, 2022 following the steps above.
  • Instructors can Download BbLearn Fall 2021 Course Grades for future reference and Download Course Files from BbLearn.

CETL Support

Each faculty member at U of I has diverse preferences and needs when it comes to learning a new application. Some like to explore on their own, others like a little bit of support when they run into complications, and some prefer one-on-one guidance. To address these varying needs, CETL will provide the following offerings during the Fall 2021 semester:

CETL Three Tiers of Support

  1. Self-Directed Study
  2. Wired Wednesday Presentations and Workshops
  3. Virtual Drop-in Help Sessions and Individual Consultations
Canvas Support for Instructors

Growing with Canvas courseTier 1: Self-Directed Study

All teaching faculty are enrolled in the Growing with Canvas course. If you like to explore on your own, this course provides extensive guidance and videos to help you become familiar with Canvas. If you do not see this course listed, please email and you will be added.

Webinar by Canvas Rep VIDEO (1.5 hrs)

All students can learn about Canvas via the Passport to Canvas course specifically designed for them.

Tier 2: Wired Wednesdays

Each Wednesday of Fall 2021, CETL will introduce a key Canvas feature or tool. As a result of this focused effort on enhancing UI faculty Canvas course building skills, all faculty should know how to use the Canvas tools and have a basics of “how to use Canvas” mastered by Spring 2022.

Wired WednesdayEach Wired Wednesday session will begin with a demonstration via ZOOM which will be recorded and linked below. This will be followed by an unrecorded Q&A session.

Questions will be curated and added to a FAQ for Canvas.

Facilitated by Carolyn Raynor
Wednesdays in ZOOM
12:30pm to 1:00pm

Tier 3: Drop-in Help Sessions

Come prepared to apply last week’s Wired Wednesday topic/technique to your course with some help from CETL staff.

via ZOOM
Mon 3:30-4:30pm & Tues 12:30-1:30pm

  • Sep 27 & 28 - Dashboard, Navigation & Settings
  • Oct 4 & 5 - Course Organization & Cleanup
  • Oct 11 & 12 - Home Page
  • Oct 18 & 19 - Announcements and Communication
  • Oct 25 & 26 - Syllabus and Course Calendar
  • Nov 1 & 2 - Modules
  • Nov 8 & 9 - Assignments and Rubrics
  • Nov 15 & 16 - Discussions
  • Nov 29 & 30 - Quizzes
  • Dec 6 & 7 - Gradebook & SpeedGrader

UI Canvas Pilot

Canvas by InstructurePilot Outcome

PILOT REPORT (Aug 31, 2021)
Canvas Pilot Recommendation Report

U of I Moving to Canvas for LMS

U of I Transition to Canvas

Why explore switching our LMS?

1) Opportunity to explore Canvas LMS at no cost

September 2020, the Idaho State Board of Education (SBOE) selected Canvas as its learning management system (LMS) and thus, the University of Idaho has access to use Canvas through Summer 2023 at no cost. This opportunity gives U of I the chance to compare Blackboard, our current LMS, with Canvas and determine which platform best supports our long-term instructional goals.

2) University of Idaho Online Education "working group" recommendation

The technology support and infrastructure sub-group recommended the following initial investments of time and money as part of the overall plan:

  • Adopt the Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) which will be supported initially by the SBOE and develop training and transition plans from the Blackboard platform.

3) Recent cost and service changes with Blackboard LMS

  • Fall 2020 Blackboard Service Cost Increases
    • Blackboard ends the practice of waving U of I storage overage charges
    • Blackboard data reporting no longer covered for free under U of I's contract
  • January 2022 U of I required to migrate from Managing Hosting to SaaS, Bb's cloud service.
  • September 2022 U of I's Blackboard contract up for renewal

Canvas Pilot Overview

The goal of the Canvas Pilot has been to allow faculty to gain exposure to Canvas so they may provide feedback on its ability to meet their LMS needs. Feedback generated by participating faculty will be presented to leadership at the end of Summer 2021.

Feedback Categories

  • Faculty experience associated with migrating to Canvas
  • Canvas features look and feel
  • Support needed by faculty during a potential migration
  • Recommended practices in teaching effectively with Canvas

Pilot Participation

  • Spring Canvas Pilot: Fifty-eight faculty from 9 colleges (CAA, CALS, CBE, CLASS, CNR, EHHS, ENGR, LAW, SCI) participated in "getting to know" Canvas, experimenting with its key features, and providing feedback about their experience.
  • Summer Canvas Pilot: Twenty faculty from 6 colleges (CAA, CBE, CLASS, CNR, EHHS, LAW) went on to teach 23 summer courses in Canvas to a total of 312 students.

LMS Comparison

LMS Market Share Comparison

At the start of spring semester 2020, Instructure's Canvas LMS continued to widen its lead in US higher education over top rival LMS, Blackboard Learn.

Click on image above go to full article

Canvas has become the preferred LMS among K-12 and higher education institutions nationwide. With year-end 2020 data, Canvas leads with 32% of US & Canadian higher ed institutions, followed by Blackboard at 23%, Moodle at 22%, and D2L at 13%.

Click on image above to expand

The figure below shows migration trends from one LMS to another from 2018 to mid-2020.

State of Idaho Pathways

As part of a statewide effort and consortium, U of I may be able to acquire a more sustainable LMS platform to enhance instruction on campus and remotely, State of Idahofacilitate collaboration among institutions, and support the development of educational opportunities through dual-credit and Idaho Online programs.

  • During Summer 2020, the Idaho State Board of Education (SBOE) began the Idaho Online Initiative, a way to consolidate online courses offered through the state's eight public postsecondary schools, to streamline pathways to degrees and certificates and improve digital learning infrastructure. As part of this effort, the Idaho SBOE selected Canvas as its learning management system (LMS).
  • Locally, the Moscow School District adopted Canvas and within our state, our two- and four-year public institutions have either adopted or are contemplating the adoption of Canvas.

LMS Feature Comparison

Explore the information provided in the following links to become familiar with the similarities and differences between Blackboard and Canvas tools and features.


All faculty should be mindful of the University's policies
regarding intellectual property and fair use.