E-Learning Blog: Canvas Release Notes from 09/06/14

Hello and thank you for visit the E-learning blog. I hope your Fall 2014 semester is off to a great start. This week’s blog will describe some of the latest release notes from Canvas. There are some new features in Gradebook, in Discussions and in the Course Imports. There are also some updates to other features.

Canvas Logo - Horizontal Color

New Features

  • Discussions: Graded discussions with peer review
  • Course Imports: Remove dates
  • Gradebook: Move the total column to the front of the Gradebook and concluded enrollment option

Updated Features

  • Turnitin Repository option
  • Course list update

New Features


Instructors can now assign peer review discussions. When you create a graded discussion now you have the ability to assign peer review as well. The Discussion index page displays the peer review icon next to the name of the graded discussion. Instructors and students will see the icon. The icon can only be seen in the Discussion index page, not the Assignment index page.

Location of new peer review icon.

Peer review details appear within the graded discussion. The peer review discussion is highlighted at the top and includes a direct link to the peer review. In order for student to peer review, they must have submitted their discussion.

Peer review notifications.

After the students have posted their discussions, they will be able to see a link to the peer review discussion on the sidebar.

Course Imports

In the course imports you can remove the dates from a course you are planning to import. All you have to do is click on “Adjust Events and Due Dates” and you will see the option to remove the dates or shift them. This feature allows you to import a course without any associated dates.

Adjust dates for imported course content.


In Gradebook, you as an instructor have the option to move the Total Column from the end to the front. Now you can see the students’ name column, their secondary ID column and then the Total column together. All you have to do is go to Gradebook, then find the Total column and click on the down arrow and select “Move to front”.

Moving total column position.

The total column at the front of the Gradebook.

The Total Column can be moved back to the end at any time.

Concluded Enrollment in CSV File

You can also choose to display concluded enrollments in a Gradebook CSV file. This option is part of the CSV download if it is selected.

Including concluded enrollments in CSV downloads.

Updated Features

Turnitin Repository Option

When you add the Turnitin option to an assignment, now you have the option to either include or not the Turnitin repository. By default this option is selected. You must deselect if you don’t want to use the Turnitin repository. This option is beneficial if you let your students resubmit assignments because Turnitin will not compare the new submission with any previous one.

Enabling and disabling the Turnitin Repository option.

Course List Update

In the Courses & Groups drop-down menu, users can more easily manage their Canvas courses. The Customize option has been combined with the My Course page. They are in the same location.

Location of combined options.

Courses with yellow stars indicate a favorite course and are included in the Courses and Groups drop-down menu. Current courses are starred by default. Users can toggle the stars to favorite or not favorite a course.

Favoriting courses.

For more information please visit: Canvas Release Notes

Thank you,
Carlos Montoya