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2016-17 Canvas Thumbs Up Recipient:
Carmen Morrison

Full-Time Faculty, Info Tech/ Computer Science (ITEC/CISS)
419.755.4865 | cmorrison@ncstatecollege.edu
[Also a 2015-16 Canvas ‘Artist’ Winner]

Student Nomination Comments About What They Found Beneficial :

  • “Announcements, assignments already entered in Canvas so I can see a “what if” grade for the class, Videos on how to navigate areas in Canvas have been posted in announcements, messages are answered promptly, and gives updates on the class and what is due next”
  • “Quizzes and assignments”
  • “Carmen Morrison made sure to keep us updated through the announcement posts and made sure to list every assignment due through the calendar, modules, and the MyITLab that is associated with the class. She always kept us informed and made sure to email us if something changed.”
  • “Carmen Morrison always messaged me back within minutes and was more than happy to help me with any questions I had! I would recommend her and her classes to anyone!”
  • “Having canvas with Ms. Carmen has been extremely helpful with communication.”

Specific identified “best practices” of Canvas use that you do:
“All assignments have rubrics, so students clearly know what they need to do for the assignment, as well as where/why points were deducted. I tried to find short YouTube videos and also created some videos using Zoom for ‘just in time’ lessons and demonstrations for difficult concepts. I created a HELP module to make it easy to find Help when they needed it; it included 17 pages/links to Canvas Help, Course/Academic Help, Technology Help, and College Services for Students. I made the labels very clear so it was easier to find the information they need (instead of digging through the syllabus or through my Course Introduction page). I think what helped them the most was the ‘Friendly Reminders’. I used the Canvas gradebook feature “Message students who…” to send a message to every student who had not submitted an assignment that was due the next day or that night. I also would post an announcement, including links to the assignment and links to Help. I also messaged students who missed assignments to remind them that they could still earn partial credit if they submitted it late. Frequently I would receive thank you’s for the reminders from busy students who admitted it was very easy to forget about assignments in online classes. The prompt to do the assignment served as motivation — and maybe obligation — to get it done. Learning objectives are listed for each module so they know in advance what they are learning that week, but I wonder if that matters as much as the assignment and grade. ? But at least it is there and it serves as a reminder to me to align the materials and assessments to those objectives! :)”

  • Frequent/Prompt grade entry
  • Extensive use of comments/ feedback capabilities on assignments
  • Timely Use of Inbox to communicate/ Respond
  • Timely Use of Announcements to Update/communicate with Students
  • Posting of all class material/, files etc.
  • Use of Assignment Due Dates and detailed, clear directions
  • Media recorder/Zoom Video uploads for mini tutorials/narrated How Tos
  • Made available supplemental links/ files etc.
  • Ensuring all links/ files etc. updated and functioning/accurate
  • Sending reminders via course homepage/Inbox etc.
What is at least 1 other specific Canvas practice beyond those mentioned above that you do/ have done and believe has helped student success & retention in your courses?

“I think the biggest change that helped students this semester was ‘chunking’ and sequencing. I changed some of the longer assignments to be two assignments, so students had a more narrow focus and could complete short assignments in their busy lifestyle. I was concerned that it would overwhelm them to see the long list of assignments, but it did not seem to phase them, and I did not receive complaints about assignments taking too long and not being able to finish them. I also changed the sequence to provide more time for the lengthy capstone assessments. I think the short assignments also gave students a sense of accomplishment (marking items off their to do list), which served as motivation. I instructed students on how to check their grades and use Canvas What-if tool (on their own — empowered them) to determine how they could achieve their target course grade. Students appreciated that tool, and it served as motivation to do well on their assignments. I tried to use more images in announcements — showing instead of telling. Screenshots and images grab their attention and it is easier/quicker to interpret.”