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An Overview of Canvas:

  • The grade book is easier to use.  Students can play "What if?" scenarios with future grades.
  • Discussions have been organized so that it is much easier to grade student participation.
  • Chat and web conferencing have been integrated.
  • SpeedGrader makes assessment a snap!
  • Integrated web 2.0 features such as Facebook, Twitter, Google Docs, and Linkedin.
  • E_Portfolios.
  • Media Comments for both faculty and students.
  • Notifications Preferences.

Q: How do I learn to use Canvas if would like to teach online but currently do not? 

A: Contact David Buck at x4290 or We will offer a hybrid (f2f and online) training program for faculty who would like to teach a fully online course. The purpose of this course, "Teaching Online at HCC," is to provide resources and methods for developing and managing quality online courses,.  While instructors might use different materials and pedagogical approaches, the accepted best practices for eLearning can be applied to all online courses.  The goals of this course focus on:

  • Preparing participants to become effective online instructors by discussing the essential skills necessary for teaching online.
  • Collecting effective practices and strategies for teaching online.

At the end of this training, successful faculty receive professional development credit and certification to teach online at HCC.

Q: How do I learn to use Canvas if I currently teach online?

A: If you have not learned Canvas, please review the Faculty Canvas Training site:

Each division also has an online faculty member who serves as the eLearning Coordinator.  These eLearning Coordinators are thoroughly familiar with Canvas and are your resource for learning more about the platform.

Q: Who are the eLearning Coordinators?
A: There is at least one eLearning Coordinator per division.  You may view the list of eLearning Coordinators on the Faculty Canvas Training site:

Q: How do I learn to use Canvas if I am a supplemental user?
A: Your division eLearning Coordinator can assist you, and you can consult the Faculty Canvas Training site:

Q: How do I log on to Canvas?

Once you have been assigned a course and section and your course site has been created on Canvas, you can go to the above URL and click on Log In. Your username is your HCC express username and your password is your seven digit HCC employee id number. If you do not know your employee id number, please ask a division office staff member to look it up for you.

Q: How are courses created in Canvas?
A: Courses are created automatically.

In Canvas, the course creation process is automated. Course sites are created from a file that we get from Colleague and then uploaded to the Canvas server.

Q: How do I get a supplemental site on Canvas for my F2F course?
A: Once you know what course and what section of that course you are teaching, just let your division office staff know that you would like the course designated in Colleague as using Canvas.

In Canvas, the course creation process is automated: any course that is designated in Colleague as using Canvas will automatically have a corresponding course site created in Canvas. Course sites are created daily, so you will have a course site on Canvas within 24 hours of the course/section having been designated in Colleague.

Q: How do my students learn to use Canvas tools?
A: We have created a “Student Guide to Canvas” site.

We have posted a “Student Guide to Canvas” course site that provides instruction on how to use the tools in Canvas. Log in information is posted on the main Canvas log on page at:  Links and log in information are also posted on the Distance Learning Homepage.

Although it is designed for students, you might find it useful, too.

Q: When are students populated in course sites?
The first global population of students into courses takes place the week before classes begin.

The first global population takes place two or three days before the first F2F orientations. We do this so you can check your sites ahead of time to make sure that the students are populated and you are ready to go for your orientations and/or the first day of the semester.

Q: How often are students populated into courses?
A: Student population into course sites is automated and takes place every two hours after the initial population.

Q: Does this automated population also remove students who have dropped?

Students who have dropped your course during the official drop period will be unenrolled from your course automatically. 

Q: Should I delete students who withdraw after the drop period?
A: No

We automatically drop students who withdraw. Their names will appear in red once they have withdrawn from your course. You want to keep them on the site, so you have a record of their activity, but you don’t want them to have continued access.

Q: Should I delete NA students?
A: No

NA simply means that the student had not logged on by the end of the third week. The student should continue to have access to the site. Please structure your course requirements and assignment due dates appropriately.

Q: What should I do if one of my students cannot log in?
There are several possible reasons for this situation.

First, you should check the Roster in Express to make sure that the student is actually enrolled in your course. Next, check the Grade Book in Canvas to make sure that the student has been entered in your course site. If the student is both enrolled in your course and appears in your site Grade Book, ask the student to call the HELP DESK.

Sometimes students cannot log on if their birth date is incorrect in Colleague. The student, in this case, is trying to log on with the correct birth date, while Canvas will only recognize the incorrect date. The student needs to contact Records and Registration to get make sure the correct date is in Colleague. Once the correct birth date is in the system, a correct student account on Canvas will be created.  

Student Profile - Maribel