Canvas Commons: Ready-to-Use Instructor Resources

The following is a guest post by Alex Bukeeva, an instructional design intern at Touro College. If you would like to submit a guest post, please contact us

Canvas is an open-sourced Learning Management System (LMS) designed to connect instructors with their students when it comes to online learning. Many instructors use Canvas to design and deliver online course instruction to their students.

You might be a seasoned Canvas course builder or a beginner just starting to create your first pages in Canvas; and in both cases you will absolutely benefit from one of the platform’s highlights – Canvas Commons.

What is Canvas Commons?

Imagine a library of thousands of online courses that you can click through and even copy elements from that you would like to use in your own course. Canvas Commons is that library! It’s a repository of courses, pages, modules, or quizzes to name a few. Users share content that they created in Canvas Commons, and this content is free to import and use within your course. You can find new ideas for assignments, quizzes, page design, and so much more!

Where to Locate Commons?

When you are in Canvas, you can find the Commons button in global navigation panel (left).

What is in it?

Once you access the Commons, you will see its navigation panel with the search bar on top. You will then be able to find resources – courses, modules, discussions, pages, even video or audio files.

Apply search filters and sort the results to narrow the returned content.

If help is needed

Commons offers helpful guides, just click the link on the right top corner

A useful example

Recently, when updating a Canvas course, I needed a page with 4 tabs (by default, a page has only 1 tab). Instead of adding tabs to my page, I searched for a 4-tab template in Commons. My search yielded 145 results (see the screenshot), and I chose the one most appropriate for my course. I downloaded (imported) it to my existing course and customized it to my needs.

This is how the imported blank page from the above screenshot looks now in my Canvas course:

I can further customize it – add or delete content, copy and reuse this page.

With Canvas Commons, you can become part of a community of online instructors ready to share helpful resources and online learning ideas with each other. Start exploring the Canvas Commons today to learn from other online instructors and incorporate new and exciting elements into your course design!

Alex Bukeeva

Alex Bukeeva currently teaches ESL to adult students. She is pursuing her MS in Instructional Design Degree at Touro Graduate School of Technology and practicing her new skills and knowledge as an intern for the Instructional Design team at Touro School of Online Education. She enjoys working with technology and likes to explore and implement new ways of helping students and instructors in achieving better results in their eLearning.

Reference herein to any specific commercial products, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not constitute or imply an endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by Touro College.

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