Small moves to make your Canvas course more student-centered

In this series of blog posts I’m going to share some of the small moves that were discussed during the online session Student-Centered Course Design Using Canvas. If you were not able to participate in the session feel free to follow along here as I share some of the activities and design elements that you can implement in class to amplify the connectivity in your class.

So let’s get started with small move #1 – making a virtual tour of your class site.

Move #1 – A Virtual Tour of your Class Site

One step that you can take in designing a student-centered Canvas site is that once your site is designed you can take time to give your students a virtual tour of the class space.

This can be done in-person via projection in a classroom, or asynchronously by creating a video-walk through of your course space. Below is a rough sample of what a course tour can look like. It was created on one take (with a script) using Panopto.

When you are making or sharing your course tour be sure to include your expectations for how often and how students should be accessing your course as well as:

  • How they will know new content is posted?
  • What components of Canvas are you using for your class?
  • Where can students find due dates?
  • What do they do if they have a question about the course?
  • What do they do if they have a question about Canvas?

This is a time to distinguish how you are using Canvas. Although students will encounter Canvas several times in their classes, it can be set up and configured many different ways. Taking time to introduce them to your layout and help them understand how your space works is a great way to try to avoid confusion and surface course site questions early on.

Connected Canvas Help Topics:

Canvas Course Home Page Options

Sites DOT MiddleburyThe Middlebury site network.