ID #1301

Canvas Release Notes Sept 19, 2015

Canvas Production Release Notes (2015-09-19)

 

Calendar

Recurring Events

When creating a new calendar event for a course, instructors can choose to create multiple copies of the event every day, week, or month. Once created, recurring events are not linked together and are independent events. Therefore, if users need to modify an event, each event has to be modified individually.

Recurring Calendar Events is a course-level feature option. This feature must be enabled at the account level before it can be used for individual courses.

When a course has enabled recurring (repeating) calendar events, an instructor can add the event details, select the course, then click the More Options button.

 

 

 

The repeat button appears as part of the new calendar event. By default, events are repeated every week.

 

  • Weekly events are replicated on the day of the week of the first event. For instance, if an event is created on a Monday and repeats weekly, the next instance of the event will appear on the following Monday, regardless of the actual date.
  • Monthly events are replicated on the day of the month of the first event. For instance, if an event is created on July 6 and repeats monthly, the next instance of the event will appear on August 6. 


Users can also choose to select the Count option, which adds a number to the end of each event title (e.g. Event 1, Event 2, etc.)

 

 

Conferences: Polling

Presenters can create polls for participants to use during a conference. Polls can be created ahead of time, such as during a presentation, or created as part of an informal discussion.

Because of a distributed rollout for this feature, many institutions may already be able to see polling in their production environment. However, the beta environment should always be used to test new features if admins or instructors are uncertain about functionality or performance.

Presenters can create a poll at the bottom of the presentation window. Polls can be Yes/No, True/False, or letter responses up to six answer choices (A through F).

 

 

 

Presenters can also create a custom poll where they can specify their answer choices.

 

 

 

Polls can also be created automatically from a presentation slide. Conferences is able to read the slide and automatically include polling options that match the polling options.

 

 

 

For the conference participants, the polling options appear on the page automatically.

 

 

Once a poll is started, presenters can see the participant responses as they are made in real time.

Presenters can also see if one or more participants in the conference have not responded. However, polls are always anonymous and voting is not required.

 

 

Presenters can publish poll results to appear for all conference participants at any time. They do not have to wait for all participants to vote.

 

 

 

Groups: Conclude Groups at Course Conclusion

When a course concludes in Canvas, groups in the course also conclude. Concluded groups do not appear in the Courses & Groups menu. Users can still access their previous and current groups in the Groups page.

 

 

Note: Currently groups still appear on the Courses page and will be addressed in a future release.

This change resolves a fixed bug in Canvas:

Explanation: Users were not able to be removed from a course group unless an admin or instructor manually removed the student from the group. This behavior occurred because groups were not associated with the course status. Canvas code has been updated to show courses groups as concluded in the Groups page and remove associated groups from the Group favorites list.

 

Gradebook: Muted Assignments

When an instructor mutes an assignment, scores are muted from the student’s Total score, but not the instructor’s Gradebook. When an instructor mutes an assignment in the Gradebook, the Total column will display a warning indicating that the total score is different than shown to students.

Note: To better associate warning messages, in the next release the warning icon will be changed to the mute icon.

 

 

People

SIS Enrollments and Remove from Course Option

On the People page, admins can remove users from a course who have SIS-created enrollments.

 

 

This change resolves a fixed bug in Canvas:

Explanation: When an admin opened the People page and viewed the settings for a student, the Remove from Course button was not available regardless of whether the student was enrolled via SIS or manual enrollment. This behavior occurred because Canvas changed confirmed the SIS enrollment type and only allowed manual enrollments to be removed. Canvas code has been updated to allow admins to remove students from a course regardless of SIS enrollment. Instructors cannot remove a student from a course unless the student was manually enrolled or unless the instructor also has admin permissions. This fix was deployed to production on September 9

Permissions: Rubrics

A user can view and manage course rubrics with the Create and Edit Assessing Rubrics permission.

This change resolves a fixed bug in Canvas:

Explanation: When an admin tried to manage rubrics through a course, they received an unauthorized error if the Manage Courses permission was disabled. This behavior occurred because rubrics would not allow users to manage rubrics without the Manage Courses permission. Canvas code has been updated to allow rubric management without the Manage Courses permission.

SpeedGrader: Manual Quiz Question Grading

In a manually graded quiz question, instructors no longer have to remove the dashes in the point field. Once an instructor starts typing a score, the dashes are removed automatically. However, if no value is entered and dashes are still present, the question is still considered ungraded.

This change resolves a fixed bug in Canvas:

Explanation: When an instructor opened a manually graded quiz in SpeedGrader and clicked the dashes in the points field, any scores typed in the field were inserted around the dashes instead of remove them completely. This behavior occurred because the points field was not focusing correctly on the dashes. Canvas code has been updated to remove the dashes when points are entered in the field.

 

Hiding Names in Anonymous Surveys

When grading an anonymous survey (quiz) in SpeedGrader, instructors can view the Hide Student Names checkbox in SpeedGrader settings, but the checkbox cannot be disabled. Anonymous surveys require names to be hidden.

 

 

 

Accessibility

Account Settings

Keyboard users can access selection menus in the Permissions tab.

Announcements

Screen readers can access when an announcement has been successfully deleted. 

Course Settings

In the Navigation tab, the Move option is not read unless it is selected in the settings menu

Discussions

Screen readers can access when a discussion has been successfully deleted.

Global Navigation

Keyboard users can view lists of courses, accounts, and groups in Global Navigation.

Pages

The Pages Front Page shows focus on disabled menu items.

Quizzes

Screen readers can access and edit quiz questions and question groups.

Screen readers can read all links to manage quiz questions.

The hidden image next to the Save it Now button includes a null ALT attribute.

Rich Content Editor

Keyboard users can access Rich Content Editor drop-down fields.

Rubrics

Scope has been added to the Rubric creation table.

SpeedGrader

Screen readers can access the file attachment and media comment buttons in the Add a Comment section.

User Settings

The User Settings displays a color contrast of 3:1 for the default Canvas interface and 4.5:1 for high contrast profiles.

Calendar: Description Content

The new calendar events window always displays the close icon.

Explanation: If a calendar event’s description had enough lines, when the item was clicked, the content was larger than the window’s height. This behavior occurred when viewed on small screens. Canvas code has been updated to adjust calendar window for smaller screen sizes.

Calendar: Everyone Due Dates

The Calendar shows due dates for Everyone on the Calendar.

Explanation: When an assignment included multiple due dates, an Everyone due date was not displaying on the Calendar. This behavior occurred because the Calendar was not associating the correct due date when more than one date was used. Canvas code has been updated to include the original calendar event date unless all sections in a course include a varied due date.

Conferences: Adobe Connect and Conferences Index Page

The Conferences page always loads regardless of conferencing tool.

Explanation: When users use the Adobe Connect conferencing tool and the configuration is unavailable, the Conferences index page failed to load. This behavior occurred because the plugin was associated with the conferences page, causing the index page to also fail. Canvas code has been updated to always load the Conferences page even if Adobe Connect’s connection is unavailable. 

Dashboard: Peer Review Icons

Peer Review assignments only display one Peer Review icon in the To Do sidebar.

Explanation: When a student was assigned more than one peer review, additional Peer Review icons appeared in the sidebar To Do list. This behavior occurred because of a misalignment with the peer review element link. Canvas code has been updated to only display one icon per peer review assignment.

Discussions: Deleted Discussions

Students cannot participate in deleted discussions through email notifications.

Explanation: When students received discussions via notifications and replied to discussions, students were able to participate with the discussion even if the discussion had been deleted. This behavior occurred because of a state verification error. Canvas code has been updated to not generate discussion notifications for deleted assignments. 

Grades: Invalid Characters and Graded State

Entering an invalid character in the Gradebook or SpeedGrader does not alter the state of the assignment.

Explanation: When an instructor entered a non-grade character (such as an ampersand or parenthesis), the grade was set to null and the state of the assignment showed as graded. This behavior occurred the state of the assignment changed with grade entries in either SpeedGrader or the Gradebook. Canvas code has been updated to disregard invalid characters in changing the assignment state.

Groups: Course Conclude

When a course concludes in Canvas, groups in the course also conclude.

Explanation: Users were not able to be removed from a course group unless an admin or instructor manually removed the student from the group. This behavior occurred because groups were not associated with the course status. Canvas code has been updated to show courses groups as concluded in the Groups page and remove associated groups from the Group favorites list.

Pages: Links and Escaped Characters

Pages render linked character text correctly.

Explanation: When a user created a link in a Page with non-alpha characters (such as a parenthesis or ampersand), the characters were escaping the link. This behavior occurred because of improper character decoding in the Rich Content Editor. Canvas code has been updated to render linked characters correctly.

Permissions: Rubrics

A user can view and manage course rubrics with the Create and Edit Assessing Rubrics permission.

Explanation: When an admin tried to manage rubrics through a course, they received an unauthorized error if the Manage Courses permission was disabled. This behavior occurred because rubrics would not allow users to manage rubrics without the Manage Courses permission. Canvas code has been updated to allow rubric management without the Manage

Quizzes: Question Banks with More than 51 Quiz Questions

Users can move or copy paginated questions in a question bank with more than 51 quiz questions. Additionally, editing a question does not create a duplicate.

Explanation: When a user created a question bank with more than 51 quiz questions, the question bank could not be moved or copied. These behaviors occurred because of pagination restrictions to properly associate all questions in the question bank. Canvas code has been updated to properly associate all quiz question IDs in a question bank regardless if more items are loaded on the page. 

SpeedGrader: Manual Quiz Question Grading

In a manually graded quiz question, instructors no longer have to remove the dashes in the point field

Explanation: When an instructor opened a manually graded quiz in SpeedGrader and clicked the dashes in the points field, any scores typed in the field were inserted around the dashes instead of remove them completely. This behavior occurred because the points field was not focusing correctly on the dashes. Canvas code has been updated to remove the dashes when points are entered in the field.

Next release schedule:

  • Beta release and notes: September 28
  • Production release notes: October 5
  • Production release and documentation: October 10

 

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