Learning Management System for Schools, Colleges and Universities4.4/5 (1279 reviews)
We can’t put more hours in your day, but we can help you waste fewer of them wrestling with your LMS. Canvas adapts to both how you prefer to work and the tools you work with. It provides easy-to-use, complementary tools that make course management a breeze. Whether it’s Canvas’ SpeedGrader, mobile apps or flexible communication tools, you’re going to save all sorts of time and effort.
The only thing as valuable as time spent teaching is time spent learning—and Canvas is built to make the most (and more) of both for teachers, students, administrators and parents. Whether your school is implementing a 1:1 program or you’re looking for a way to connect with your students in an innovative, intuitive way, Canvas can help you transform learning.
For all of the powerful tools Canvas offers, there’s only one that really matters (no pressure, but it’s you). We built Canvas by asking what you wanted in an LMS—we have continued to grow it through your feedback and suggestions. It’s a philosophy that makes sense to us: put technology on the side of the individuals who can use it to chart the future of learning.
Canvas has been a great platform in my career as a student and as an employee. From being able to take quizzes directly on the platform, to getting involved in very thoughtful discussions, Canvas has been something that has facilitated my learning experiences, inside the classroom and in the office. The digitalization of coursework, readings, and writings, has made a positive impact on the environment, and also allows its users to take their work with them wherever they go- as everything is accessible via the mobile app, or through the website on their laptop. This has made the experience absolutely positive for me and those who I have studied and worked with over the years.
Canvas is a software that I have been using for multiple years now, having used it originally in school, and now in college at Georgetown University while also making use of the software's organizational benefits as an Intern at EY. There are a few aspects of this program that stand out to me as being significantly beneficial. Firstly, Canvas, as a platform, is used for connecting users in an organization (class, work project, team, etc.) under one platform. The administrator (boss, professor, team leader) can then publish documents, quizzes, links, and other files so that its users can all view them, without the need for the administrator to send these files to each user individually. Perhaps the largest pro of a software like Canvas is that, on the same platform where files are published and shared with others, users can also engage in blog posts, discussions, Zoom conferences, and more features; all of which allow them to communicate with and learn from each other while also becoming familiar with any material posted by their boss, team leader, or professor. This synergy is what makes canvas special and unique; it is a one-stop-shop for individuals in an organization to parttake in multiple means of learning, all in the same location.
Despite being a phenomenal software platform, perhaps one of its downfalls is that, when using CANVAS in school or in college, the dashboard can get relatively messy. When enrolled in many different classes across different semesters, older classes tend to stay on your dashboard and this can make it difficult to keep your new classes a priority at first glance. While this is easy to edit in your Canvas settings, I personally believe this should be something that the user can edit from the homepage. In addition, it would be a large plus to the aspect of organization if users could customize the menu bar on the left side of the website, to only show the tabs they want to see for each class or project (files, modules, pages, discussions, announcements, grades, etc.)
Overall, I'm highly satisfied to have a student portal that doesn't make me want to tear my hair out. The developers clearly did a lot of research and user testing into finding out what features students need, as it still astounds me how complete of an experience the app is. Just about the only major issue with it is that some instructors don't make the most out of its functionality, but that's not really an issue with Canvas itself.
As a student who used to use Blackboard, I immediately saw Canvas' UI and overall look-and-feel as a huge upgrade. I like that it's based on modern UI design patterns, with features like the sidebar and the single flush column of content. It makes the web app inviting and fun to use for young students like me who are on their phone for most of the day.
One relatively minor feature that I greatly appreciate is the in-app PDF previewer, which saves me from wasting time having to download the file or opening it in a new tab and cluttering my workspace. Just this feature alone was enough to show me that Canvas' developers really had the end-user in mind.
One last big net positive I want to mention is the integration with the mobile app. It's great! Notifications show up on time and don't duplicate or perform other wonky stuff. Having a seamless experience between desktop and mobile goes a long towards making students like feel in control of their learning.
While there's a lot to like about the UI, I do have some minor grievances with it in a few places. The one thing that really stands out is how some blue links are clickable but don't actually do anything. For example, discussion threads have a clickable subtitle that shows which Lecture Section they're intended for. If it's for "All Sections", then clicking on it does absolutely nothing. I know this is a minor nitpick, but you would not believe how many times I've ended up accidentally clicking on that link intending to go the discussion board.
I've been a full-time student for the past 10 years and all the institutions that I've been attending have used canvas to post grades and make announcements. I have never had any complaints about the online website. It is easy to customize the main page to see exactly which courses you are in and it gives you the ability to arrange them in the order that you see fit, with your most important classes place in the more visible areas of the website. On the right side of the page there is an announcement bar where updates from your professors are easily seen and any new grades that have been posted are showing as well. Canvas also gives the professors the ability to organize students into groups for certain projects and also too give quizzes and tests. Professors also can upload PowerPoints, handouts, and other sources of material, which are easily downloaded through the website which automatically packs all the files, if multiple, into a zip file for your convenience. Overall, I've had a good experience with canvas and I would recommend it to institutions that are looking for a reliable, convenient way to communicate to students and facilitate courses online.
I don't really have any negative things to say about the software itself. The only issues that I have had are with the app, which I have used both on Android and Apple devices. When clicking on pop-up notifications for new grades being posted or sometimes other announcements, the app opens but it does not take you to the desired notification. When faced with a blank screen, you need to restart the app and manually go to where the notification was trying to direct you.
I have used canvas at both my previous college and my current one which I transferred to, for both classes which were taken entirely on the platform (online classes) and classes where it was used as an aid. The ability to see an up to date schedule for your classes, contact instructors, revisit old modules, submit assignments online, view and respond to instructor feedback... It's completely changed the game. It's become an intrinsic part of my routine to check canvas everyday. You can also customize what alerts you want to see, so if your instructor gives you feedback or sends an alert out you can get an email straight away.
The app is also fantastic and very convenient!
If you're an instructor and you don't use canvas, I worry that I won't be able to see important changes in time. Plus, feedback is relegated to the old fashioned, penciled in way of the early 2000s. We're better than that now, in no small part due to Canvas, which has genuinely revolutionized the medium learning takes.
There was one brief time this year where they pushed an update that made it so one of my instructors would see some error message when they clicked on my file submission, even though they were able to successfully download the file. They patched that quickly!
Overall, it turns of lasting cons, canvas has tried very hard to become irreplaceable, and they've succeeded. My only problem is when instructors aren't tech oriented, and so don't understand how to set up a course shell, but that's not canvas' fault.
There is a paid version that you can do too. It's very expensive, and we found it still didn't quite meet our needs. For universities it probably would do the trick, but if you're a small education program, stick with Free for Teacher. Even with its little hassles, Canvas is still the best online classroom you can find out there.
We use the Free for Teacher edition. When it comes to setting up courses, having assignments, files, students, deadlines, and grades set up, it's pretty simple. Not a lot of trouble getting things put together. You can integrate videos, there's a conference capability called Big Blue Button that allows all the members of the course to video in with each other and you can share screen and everything. It has been a big help allowing our students to have a portal to do their assignments, and connect with everyone in the class.
One of the nuances to Canvas that is difficult is limiting what teachers can see. By that I mean we have two different types of courses that we run.
One is an individual cohort of a few students and a director. The only way to make these closed down to just these members is to create a duplicate of the course and put those members in. Not a terrible thing, but then the courses start to stack up with all the different cohorts you have going. Plus, there's not really a way to have any updates filter down into all the same semester courses. So if we want to make an update on Semester 1, we have to go into each individual course and update it. There's also no way to update deadlines when you copy a course. So I have to change every assignment's due date so it fits in the new semester's timeline.
The other kind of course that we have is an open course that anyone can jump into, and then we assign a TA to grade certain students. The problem with this is that there's no way to limit the TA's view of who is in the course. So it shows them that there are dozens of students' work that needs to be graded in their To-Do List and makes it difficult for them to know when their assigned students have actually submitted anything. Haven't been able to find a work around for this yet.
Canvas Cloud is Free for Teachers to use, just sign up to get started.
Engage students in learning anytime, anywhere and support 1:1 and other technology initiatives both in and outside the classroom.
Grading is a breeze and takes half the time. With SpeedGrader for iPad, even grading on-the-go is easy.
Teachers can preview assignments and other course elements as students see them.
Defines course, curriculum and certification paths, including pre-test and post-test assessment tracks.
Connect parents to students’ courses automatically—giving them the insight to help their students be successful.
Let Canvas help you make every step of the state standards process easier, from achieving to measuring to reporting.
Teachers teach in Canvas, so why not learn? In Canvas, teachers can share resources across classes and across schools, pursue additional training and master the craft of teaching. Plus, using Canvas is a breeze for both teachers and administrators—so more time can be spent learning.
Below are some frequently asked questions for Canvas LMS.
Canvas LMS offers the following pricing plans:
Pricing model: Free
Free Trial: Not Available
Canvas Cloud is Free for Teachers to use, just sign up to get started.
Canvas LMS offers the following features:
Canvas LMS has the following typical customers:
Large Enterprises, Mid Size Business, Public Administrations, Small Business
Canvas LMS supports the following languages:
Canvas LMS has the following pricing plans:
Canvas LMS supports the following devices:
Android, iPhone, iPad
Canvas LMS integrates with the following applications:
APIANT, Alma, Capabiliti, Classe365, Panopto, WizIQ, WizIQ Virtual Classroom, Zoom, iSpring Learn, miniOrange
Canvas LMS offers the following support options:
Forum, Online Support, Phone Support, Video Tutorials