This document contains guidelines, practices and procedures that govern the administration and use of the enterprise learning management system (LMS) at the University of Delaware, which is currently Canvas. Canvas is centrally supported through IT-Academic Technology Services. Developed by the LMS Support group, the document reflects existing practices, procedures and recommended guidelines to implement.
PDF Version: Learning Management System (LMS) Guidelines
- Section 1: Teaching and Learning Functionality
- Section 2: System Administration
- Section 3: Canvas Guidelines
Section 1: Teaching and Learning Functionality
The following members of the University of Delaware community can log in to Canvas with their UDelNet ID and password.
- Students enrolled in at least one graduate or undergraduate credit course are automatically enrolled in Canvas through the automated course creation process for that term.
- Faculty, administrative and academic staff who are non-misc wage employees.
- Staff members not currently enrolled automatically, who need access to a course, can be added to an additional users list manually maintained by Canvas admins in the LMS Support Group. Complete the Canvas – Request Enrollment in a Course Site form.
- External users to the University can be added through the Guest Management System which requires sponsorship from an individual (faculty/staff) on campus. Once a guest ID has been created, the instructor is responsible for enrolling them into a course and assigning an appropriate role.
This section is intended to clarify the Canvas roles currently in use on campus and their specific permissions. These permissions allow users access to certain tools, features and functionality within a Canvas course. A user’s permissions in the course are determined by the role the user is assigned. Users added automatically are assigned a role based on what is in UDSIS. Users added manually are assigned a role by the instructor adding them to the site.
Canvas provides five course-level user roles that each include their own set of permissions.
- Student: Student permissions are restricted, but they have enough permissions to access and interact with course materials, including submitting assignments.
- TA: These users have permissions similar to teachers except for a few items detailed in the table below. The TA role is meant to support the teacher role.
- Teacher: This role should be used by anyone listed in UDSIS as the instructor of record. The teacher has the ability to add other users to their course site, giving them control over their course. Added users’ level of access is based on the role selected for them.
- Designer: These users are permitted to access and create course content, including announcements, assignments, discussions, and quizzes. Designers cannot access grades. (i.e. Instructional Designers)
- Observer: Observers usually have the fewest permissions. They cannot submit any work on the site.
In addition to these standard roles, the following roles have been created for University of Delaware instructors to add to their course sites.
- Grader: For grading purposes only, this role can view and edit grades.
- Testing Assistant: Used for anyone that may be assisting with test creation or test administration. (i.e. Testing Center assistants)
- Resource Assistant: Used for faculty/staff that may be assisting with your content, interacting with students in a limited way. (i.e. Librarians, CTAL staff, other administrative staff from departments that support teaching.) Access to grades is not allowed.
Note: When choosing between a Designer and a Resource Assistant, the Designer role has more permissions. In addition to what a Resource Assistant can do, the Designer can also add/edit/delete assignments and quizzes, add /remove students from a course, publish a course, view and link to question banks, add/edit/delete rubrics and some other permissions. The Designer role is meant for the person who acts as a full instructional designer working with the teacher in the course throughout the course’s design, development and implementation. The Resource Assistant can add/edit/delete course content and files and interact with students in Discussions. Please see the table for a complete list of permissions and in both roles access to grades is not allowed.
When adding an individual to your course, use the following chart to determine the most appropriate role for them.
|Analytics – view pages||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||x||x|
|Announcements – view||✓||✓||✓||x||✓||✓||✓||✓|
|Conversations – send messages to entire class||x||✓||✓||x||✓||✓||✓||x|
|Conversations – send messages to individual course members||✓||✓||✓||x||✓||✓||✓||x|
|Course Calendar – add / edit / delete||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Course Content – add / edit / delete||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Courses – change visibility||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Courses – view usage reports||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Discussions – create||✓||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Discussions – moderate||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Discussions – post||✓||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Discussions – view||✓||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||✓|
|Grades – edit||x||✓||✓||✓||x||x||x||x|
|Grades – select final grade for moderation||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Grades – view all grades||x||✓||✓||✓||✓||x||x||x|
|Groups – view all student groups||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Learning Outcomes – add / edit / delete||x||✓||x||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Learning Outcomes – import||x||✓||x||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Assignments and Quizzes – add||x||✓||✓||x||✓||x||✓||x|
|Manage Assignments and Quizzes – delete||x||✓||✓||x||✓||x||✓||x|
|Manage Assignments and Quizzes – edit||x||✓||✓||x||✓||x||✓||x|
|Manage Course Files – add||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Manage Course Files – delete||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Manage Course Files – edit||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Manage Courses- publish||x||✓||x||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Courses – reset||x||✓||x||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Groups – add||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Groups – delete||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Groups – manage||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Manage Pages – create||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Manage Pages – delete||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Manage Pages – update||x||✓||✓||x||x||✓||✓||x|
|Question banks – view and link||x||✓||✓||x||✓||x||✓||x|
|Rubrics – add / edit / delete||x||✓||✓||x||✓||x||✓||x|
|Student Collaborations – create||✓||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – Designers- add||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – Designers – remove||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – Observers – add||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – Observers – remove||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – Students – add||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – Students – remove||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – TAs – add||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – TAs – remove||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – Teachers- add||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – Teachers- remove||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – allow administrative actions in courses||x||✓||x||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – manage students in courses||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
|Users – view list||✓||✓||✓||x||✓||✓||✓||x|
|Users – view login IDs||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||x||x|
|Users – view primary email address||x||✓||✓||x||x||x||x||x|
|Web Conferences – create||✓||✓||✓||x||x||x||✓||x|
- A teacher/TA cannot remove those enrolled via UDSIS
- Course content affects: assignments, attendance, calendar, chat, collaborations, commons, conferences, course home page, course settings, discussions, modules, pages and syllabus.
- The ability to create/edit/delete course sections is controlled by the automated course creation process. You can contact the LMS team (firstname.lastname@example.org) for any questions related to sections in a course.
- If you want more detailed information regarding the features affected by any of the above permissions, please review the Canvas Course Role Permissions page.
Course Enrollment Requests
The University of Delaware is committed to protecting the privacy of student education records as outlined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). To support FERPA compliance and the protection of student information, enrollment in Canvas course sites is regulated. Check with the Registrar’s Office or the Registrar’s website for any questions related to FERPA. Information can also be found on General Counsel’s University Policies website: The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) Policy.
No individual may request access to a course for themselves unless they are the instructor of record for the course. If the individual is not the instructor of record for the course, they must either (a) request access from the instructor of record for the course or (b) request to be given access from their Dean or Department Chair who must make the request to the LMS Support group.
When giving access to a course, it is important to select the appropriate level of access in order to protect students’ privacy rights. Certain roles will have access to student grades. Please refer to the table above to determine the most appropriate level of access and role.
If a student is a TA (graduate student, undergraduate student), they become an employee of the University and would need to uphold FERPA. Since most TA’s are students themselves, they should only be able to access the students in their assigned section(s). They fall under the same guidelines as other student workers and would go through the UDSIS FERPA training/acknowledgement.
Enrollment of Additional Faculty or Administrative Personnel
The LMS Support group must receive a formal request from the instructor of record, Dean, or Department Chair to enroll additional faculty or administrative personnel into a course or multiple courses either temporarily or for continued access. If there are any concerns about a compliance risk, please check with the Registrar’s Office prior to making the request. Requests should be made by completing the Canvas-Request Enrollment in a Course Site form.
Requesting a New Role
A request can be made for an additional role to be created in Canvas. Any request would go through a research process by the LMS Support group to identify if there is a university-wide use for that role and whether it covers a unique campus need. Only then would it be created. Requests can come from faculty members, Deans, Department Chairs, or associated administrative support staff by completing the Canvas – Request for a New Role form. Canvas users that are students, guests or observers are not permitted to request a role.
Canvas sites for official catalog courses are created automatically and will appear in the Canvas Dashboard under unpublished courses when released by the Registrar’s Office. Before each term, instructors are asked to confirm their Canvas course sites, verifying that sites are present for all courses where they are listed as an instructor of record. If any course site is not present, instructors should check with their department scheduler for official scheduling information. Canvas sites are not automatically created for sections 000-009 (i.e. Independent Study).
To request a Canvas site that is not automatically created use the Canvas – Miscellaneous Site Request form.
A Canvas course site (and its content) from a previous semester can be copied by the instructor of record, who is assumed to be the creator and owner of the site and its content.
In the event the instructor of record is unavailable, a written request for a course copy may be submitted by the Dean or Department Chair to the LMS Support group by completing the Canvas – Request for a Course Copy form.
All content created and used in the LMS are subject to all rules and policies set forth in the University of Delaware Policy for Copyright and Fair Use in Instruction. This policy can be found in its entirety on the General Counsel website page: Copyright and Fair Use in Instruction Policy.
Section 2: System Administration
Third-party Tools (LTI)
A variety of add-on software tools that extend the functionality of a Learning Management System (LMS) are available. These tools are considered “external” because they are not applications owned by the University of Delaware and, even though they can be integrated with Canvas, they are not part of the software included in our agreements with the LMS vendor.
Canvas users interested in integrating external, third-party vendor tools for use in their courses need to follow the process defined by UD Information Technologies. Detailed instructions can be found on the Canvas webpage, Third Party Tool Integration.
Course Content Availability
Automatically created courses by default have a start and end date that is controlled by the current term. A current term is defined as two weeks prior to the start of a term through two weeks after the end of a term. Courses are placed in Past Enrollments two weeks after the end of the term, where students have view-only access to the site. The instructor has the discretion to alter student availability of their course through the course site’s options in Settings.
Section 3: Canvas Guidelines
The Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) can be used for the following purposes:
- To deliver instructional content for University of Delaware courses (credit and non-credit)
- To support course content development for a future course
- To share resources for students enrolled in an official program (i.e. New Student Orientation)
- To support special purpose needs across campus that benefit from the teaching and learning tools of an LMS. Faculty or programs can make a request for this type of site by completing the Canvas – Miscellaneous Site Request form and selecting the “Other” option. Each request is reviewed and not all are granted a site.
During mid-August of each academic year, Canvas sites that are five years old or older will be concluded (meaning all enrollment in the site is removed and sites will no longer be visible in the “all courses” list for users). Two weeks prior to the selected date, an announcement will be provided in Canvas specifying the exact date courses will be concluded. If for any reason, a course needs to be retained longer than five years, the instructor-of-record, department chair, or dean must complete the Canvas – Request to Retain Course Access Beyond Deadline form prior to the scheduled conclusion date.
User profiles are never deleted from Canvas. A user who leaves the University will retain access to Canvas if their University account (eg. UDelNetID/password) remains active according to security guidelines.
Canvas data that is outside of what an instructor can see through the teacher role (i.e. students activity, quiz logs, analytics), can be provided for academic integrity purposes only. Requests for this data must be made through the Office of Student Conduct.
The Office of Student Conduct can request information by emailing email@example.com.
Intellectual Property Protections for Faculty and Students
Please see the Policy on Intellectual Property from the Office of General Counsel.
Last updated November 2021