The March is On

The 4th Annual March for Best Practices is a chance for Faculty to share 1-2 best practices in their teaching. One best practice we like to honor is: sharing! which is what this professional development opportunity is all about. Find out how you can join in the march like your colleague below.

New features

If you haven’t seen the latest in Canvas as of the end of January, then take a quick look at this video.  Some of the new features include:

A quick snapshot of a student’s activity and performance with what are called Context Cards.  Simply select a name from the people tab and see their snapshot.

Another useful option is the recurring calendar event.  In this update you can limit the number of times that a repeating event occurs.

The student’s to-do list for assignments only populates with assignments that are NOT past due.  Once an assignment is past-due, the student will not see that assignment in their to-do list.  This feature provides less late entries and more accountability.

There are some more features that you may find useful so check out the video at:


Wouldn’t it be nice to access all Canvas assignment parameters from a single spreadsheet? Well…

You can!  I had an instructor want to remove deadlines from all assignments and they didn’t want to have to do it one assignment at a time.  The process to get this single-access-spreadsheet function set up is a little detailed, but once in place, you can quickly access ALL assignment parameters in one spreadsheet.  If you make a change to a quiz name on the spreadsheet, it changes on Canvas.  Change a due date on the spreadsheet and it’s done on Canvas.  Want to quickly change a set of due dates?  It’s all there on one page.  Nice right!  Check it out and see if you could benefit from this function.

A little video spice is nice…

Do you like to have fun with your videos?  If you do then you might like this.  How to add elements to your videos and make them move.  If you have iMovie, Final Cut or similar video programs then give this video tutorial a peep.

Question banks

Do you have some questions that might be good for some later assessments but don’t want to make a quiz right now?  Check out this video so that you can capture some quick assessment inspiration without the perspiration of making an assessment right now.

Education Event in AZ: TechTalks 2017 at SCC

Todd and I have attended this, and he actually gave a legendary talk there on the topic of “Easy” which included Gallagher-inspired splatter. This year Jared and I are going, and if you decide a day in the valley with all kinds of Maricopa teachers and designers sounds like fun, please register and let us know if you want to car pool


Scottsdale Community College’s TechTalks 2017 is an event where people interested in educational technology can gather to enjoy a series of live, 18-minute presentations about technology and the learning/teaching process. The end result is a morning of inspiring, entertaining, and touching stories with the power to change student success outcomes.

TechTalks 2017 will be held in a format similar to the highly acclaimed TED Talks. It promises to be an intense day of talking, listening, sharing, learning and networking. You won’t want to miss it!

Friday, January 27, 2016, 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Scottsdale Community College Performing Arts Center
9000 E. Chaparral Rd., Scottsdale

Making the Most of Images by Using Alt-Text

Adding images to your course content can make it more visually-appealing, engaging to visual learners and allow you to represent information in other ways.

Sample Canvas Course Front Page

What is important to remember is that if you use images, that two best practices are followed:

  1. Add alternate text (Alt-Text) to describe images as briefly as possible. If the image is purely used as a decoration, no Alt-Text is needed.
  2. If important information is communicated using images, provide a text description or explanation to enforce learning, make the content universally accessible (UDL Principle 1)