Canvas Release Notes Highlights: Spring & Summer Updates

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated; feature releases in the production environment take place on the third Saturday of every month. SUNY Geneseo’s EdTech team posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to our blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact the Canvas Support Team if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

This blog post addresses the Canvas Release, and Ready Release, Notes from March through August. All features described below are available within Geneseo’s instance of Canvas.

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Alternative Formats in Canvas: Making PDFs More Accessible

Graph of alternative format downloads by Geneseo users from 8/24 to 9/7/2020

When Geneseo’s Canvas added the accessibility program Blackboard Ally in March 2020, a host of new tools became available for both faculty and students. Over the next few weeks, we’ll explore what new powers you have for making course content both more accessible and more useful.

One new item is Alternative Formats, which gives download options without any extra effort on a faculty member’s part. While it’s primarily intended for student use, it offers clear advantages to faculty, as well. And, as you can see, our Canvas users are already putting it to work.

graph showing how many times the alternate formats window was launched, and how many items were downloaded, each day between 8/24 - 9/7
Two weeks into the semester, Geneseo Canvas users have downloaded alternative formats of course files almost 1500 times.
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Canvas Release Notes Highlights: February 15, 2020

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated; feature releases in the production environment take place on the third Saturday of every month. SUNY Geneseo’s EdTech team posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to our blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact the Canvas Support Team if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

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ASSESStivus 2020: Key Takeaway

SUNY Geneseo hosted ASSESStivus: Assessment for the rest of us at the start of the spring 2020 semester. This annual event, “organized and hosted by the College Assessment Council…[,] embraces the model of continuous improvement while highlighting assessment initiatives, sharing back information, and utilizing best practices.” Honing in on Geneseo’s Wildly Important Goal and following up to a fall 2019 post, six Canvas-based tools assisting with retention were reintroduced.

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SoS: Start of Semester FYIs for Students

Happy first week of classes, SUNY Geneseo! To help our learners start the fall semester off on the right foot, this blog post walks Geneseo learners through the essential items to address at the start of a semester. This post will be particularly useful for users who are new to Canvas.

Have the Right Tools

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SoS: Start of Semester FYI for Faculty (Ensuring Learners Can Access Your Class)

Enter key

Some of the most common questions that arise at the beginning of each semester center on the learners’ ability, or rather inability, to access their courses in Canvas . Below are three quick steps you, the teacher, can take to ensure that your courses are accessible to learners.

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Canvas Release Notes Highlights: Winter Refresh

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated; feature releases in the production environment take place on the third Saturday of every month. SUNY Geneseo’s EdTech team posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to our blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact the Canvas Support Team if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

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Canvas Release Notes Highlights: November 16, 2019

Canvas operates on a three-week release cycle through which features are added or updated; feature releases in the production environment take place on the third Saturday of every month. SUNY Geneseo’s EdTech team posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to our blog a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact the Canvas Support Team if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

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Student Success and Retention

The decision to continue one’s pursuit of higher education is influenced by a multitude of factors in the personal and academic realms. It comes of no surprise that the role of faculty plays a primary part in shaping the degree to which students feel connected, or integrated, to academic life at their institution of choice. At Geneseo, where the retention of Knights between their first and second years is a Wildly Important Goal, our faculty hear often about the importance of regular, timely, and graded feedback. This post is, to some extent, an exception.

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