Eight Steps to Canvas

Log In

Canvas works best using Chrome, Firefox or Edge, or by accessing it via the Canvas apps on your mobile devices.

Some users have reported issues navigating Canvas using Safari (a common Mac/iPhone/iPad browser). If you do encounter a problem with Safari, (or Chrome or Firefox) clearing your browser history/cache files can help. Once clear, restart your browser, and log back into Canvas.

Check out your Spring 2023 courses

Spring 2023 courses are now available for faculty to begin working on.

Once you log into Canvas, you will be brought to your Dashboard, which displays a selection of your courses. Most users will see their Spring 2023 courses there. Click here for a quick video about how to manage your Dashboard. Alternatively, select “Courses” from the left-side navigation menu and click All Courses.

Don’t see one of your Spring 2023 courses? Let us know at canvas@clarku.edu.

Check out your imported Moodle courses

All curricular courses currently available in Moodle except Summer 2022 and Fall 2022 have already been imported to Canvas. You can see them on your Dashboard, or your All Courses listing. They are unpublished, and will say “ATS Imported” and the title is appended with “Imported”.

Fall and Summer 2022 courses will be imported the week of January 3, 2023, to capture any final changes made by faculty to their course in Moodle.

If you need to import your Fall or Summer course prior to this date, click here for instructions on how to move courses from Moodle to Canvas, or contact canvas@clarku.edu.

Import Content to your Spring Course

As you begin to work on your Spring 2023 course, you may want to import content from another Canvas course – such as those imported from Moodle. Click here for a quick video about how to import content between Moodle courses.

Please note that all courses will include some template materials that you may want to delete. Refer to the “tips and tricks” link in the Moodle to Canvas comparison section below for more information.

Consider the Moodle to Canvas Comparison

Most of the content imported from Moodle into Canvas will look very similar, though some will require you to consider alternative tools in Canvas. For example, if you used lessons in Moodle, you’ll need to convert those lessons to Mastery Paths or use pages and activities within a Module to build out your lesson. We’ve compiled some tips and tricks to help you with Moodle imports here.

Click here for a more comprehensive comparison, and feel free to reach out to your ATS liaison for help.

Publish your Course

In Moodle, you activated a course by enabling it, and when you were ready for students to see the course, you made it visible. In Canvas, you have the ability to publish and unpublish courses, as well as content within your courses, to control what is visible and what is not.

Remember that Teachers and TAs are able to access an unpublished course site, but you must publish a course in order to be able to email students through Canvas, send course announcements, or allow your students to see your course. 

To publish or unpublish a course: Open your course, look for the Course Status buttons to the right, and when you’re ready, click the Publish button (green indicates it is published).

To publish or unpublish specific content within your course: Look for the Publish/Unpublish button in the upper-right corner of a page or activity. If you’re using Modules, this button will appear to the right of the item. Simply click the button to change the status.

Add your TAs

Open your course, and click on People from the left-side course navigation menu. Click click the +People button in the upper-right corner. Enter the TA’s Clark email address, select the TA role, then click Next and follow the prompts. If the TA was successfully added, they will receive a course invitation in their Clark email.


Ask for Help

ATS is here to help and we’re excited to help you transition to Canvas.

Workshops, and Office Hours: ATS is running multiple workshops and office hours a week for faculty, staff and students to help everyone get familiar with Canvas. No registration required, and all session are available on Zoom. More dates are being added all the time! Click here for a full listing of dates and times.

Departmental Training: We would also be more than happy to come and offer dedicated, focused training for your department’s faculty and staff over the next couple of months. Please reach out to canvas@clarku.edu to schedule training.

Email: Email canvas@clarku.edu with any of your Canvas questions, to schedule consultations, or just say hi!

Canvas: Log on and Learn

ITS is excited to announce that Canvas is now available for all Clarkies to log into and explore, in preparation for full launch in the Spring semester.

Step 1: Log in

There are three easy ways to log into Canvas

To log in

Use your usual Clark account information to log in.

Step 2: Look around

When you log in, you will have access to a number of training options.

  • A welcome tour
  • A welcome message with useful links for faculty and students
  • Enrollment in training classes
    • All users have access to Passport to Canvas: Student training
    • Faculty and Staff have access to Growing with Canvas: Teacher training

Step 3: Learn more

ATS is excited to offer a wide range of training for faculty, staff and students. Click here for more information including dates.

Getting Started and Best Practices Workshops: Multiple dates

ATS is running multiple workshops a week for faculty, staff and students to help everyone get familiar with Canvas. No registration required, and all session are available on Zoom. More dates are being added all the time! Click here for a full listing of dates and times.

Departmental Workshops: At your convenience

We would be more than happy to come and offer dedicated, focused training for your department’s faculty and staff over the next couple of months. Please reach out to canvas@clarku.edu to schedule training.

Asking for Help: Multiple opportunities

Students: Contact the Help Desk (helpdesk@clarku.edu, 508-793-7745) for any questions about Canvas

Faculty and Staff: Email canvas@clarku.edu with any of your Canvas questions, or join us for one of our many ATS Canvas Office Hours.

Canvas is Coming

As announced in June, Clark is replacing Moodle with Canvas. Starting in Spring 2023, all courses will begin using Canvas as the Learning Management System (LMS). Click here for more information about this project.

Since our announcement over the summer, ITS has been busy working with faculty, students and staff, to prepare Canvas for our Fall 2022 pilot. This semester, as part of the pilot we have 97 courses, with 60 faculty and over 1700 student enrollments. ITS and much of the campus is getting lots of experience in making Canvas the best possible LMS for Clark.

As we move closer to our full campus launch for Spring 2023, here are some important dates for all community members to note.

Log into Canvas: The week of October 3rd

  • All students, faculty and staff will be able to log into Canvas via ClarkYou or directly via https://canvas.clarku.edu with their Clark Account credentials. When you first log in, you will have access to a faculty and/or student training course to help you prepare for Spring semester.

Faculty: Hear From Your Peers: October 14th, 12pm to 1pm

  • ATS will host a faculty webinar panel with Deb Robertson, Kristina Wilson and other faculty teaching in Canvas during the pilot. Learn more how pilot faculty have adapted to Canvas, and hear their advice. Click here to register.

Courses migrated from Moodle: The week of October 17th

  • Courses from Spring 2022 and prior (that are currently available in Moodle) will be migrated to Canvas and available for faculty to access and use in future courses.
    • Summer 2022 and Fall 2022 courses from Moodle will be available in Canvas in early January 2023 to ensure the content moved is as complete as possible. If you need to migrate this content sooner, please contact helpdesk@clarku.edu for instructions.

Spring Shells available in Canvas: The week of November 14th 

  • Spring 2023 shells will be available to faculty to build in Canvas approximately 7 days after registration opens.

Faculty, TA, Staff and Student Training: Ongoing

We know that moving to a new LMS can be both exciting and scary, but we’re here to help. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to your favorite ATS or ITS person for a conversation and to learn more about how we can help.

Come Play with Blackboard and Canvas

Spring is an exciting time for the LMS Evaluation process.

March: Candidate demonstrations

During March, Blackboard and Canvas both offered two online demonstrations – one each for students, and for faculty/staff. Initial feedback was that many people were impressed with the modern user-interfaces, the mobile applications, the accessibility features, and the grading options. We also heard some important critical feedback about both candidates, all of which will help us make the right decision for Clark. If you missed the demonstrations, all four are now available on our LMS Evaluation webpage.

April: Experience the candidates first-hand

Now that you’ve seen what the candidates can do – it’s time to see what you can do with the candidates. As the next phase, we’d like to invite members of the Clark community to experience Blackboard and Canvas first-hand. We know that seeing a polished presentation from a vendor is very different from learning and using a system. By having our volunteer faculty, staff and students log into a test environment and interact with the tools in a real way, we can learn much more about a candidate’s suitability for Clark.

If you would like to experience Blackboard and/or Canvas first-hand, click here to register your interest. Once we receive your request we will email you within 5 business days with more information about how to log into the test environment.

Let us know what you think

Regardless of your level of participation in the LMS Evaluation process, ITS is interested in hearing your thoughts, concerns and questions. We know that the possibility of a change in LMS is both exciting and scary. We’re eager to listen to any of your opinions, answer any of your questions and take your perspective into consideration as Clark makes this important decision. Feel free to reach out to Joanne Dolan (jodolan@clarku.edu) directly, or to the Help Desk (helpdesk@clarku.edu)

Canvas and Blackboard and Moodle, Oh My!

We’re excited to announce that the LMS Evaluation project (click here for more information) is moving to a new phase – candidate demonstrations and evaluation.

Last Fall many of you were generous with your time and opinions about Moodle and your hopes for the future when it came to Learning Management Systems. With over 100 responses to our survey, and many departmental and student-group discussions, ITS and the LMS Evaluation Steering Committee, would like to say thank you! We’ve analyzed all of ideas and we’re currently preparing a short report to share the major themes of that feedback.

Based on that feedback, and on internal research, Clark is hosting two Learning Management System providers to offer virtual demonstrations to our campus community. These two LMSs are candidates for replacing Moodle as Clark’s LMS, phased in over the next 2 years, so we’re excited to see what they might offer you as you teach, learn and work with technology. Most of all, we’re eager to see if you think either of these systems have a place at Clark.

ITS is inviting you to attend these demonstrations. If your schedule allows, we recommend attending one demonstration from each candidate.

Click here to register to attend any of the candidate demonstrations. All sessions will be recorded.


Canvas is an LMS offered by the company Instructure. It is usually cloud-hosted. It is currently the market leader in higher education with a share of 34% of US and Canadian institutions. Click here for more information on Canvas.

  • Student-focused demonstration: Thursday, March 17th, 3pm – 4pm
  • Faculty/Staff-focused demonstration: Wednesday, March 23rd, 1:30pm – 3pm

Blackboard Learn

Blackboard Learn is an LMS offered by the company Blackboard. Its current iteration is called Blackboard Learn Ultra and is usually cloud-hosted. Blackboard Learn (Ultra and previous iterations) have a 21% share of of US and Canadian higher education institutions. Click here for more information on Blackboard Learn.

  • Student-focused demonstration: Thursday, Thursday, March 24th, 3pm – 4pm
  • Faculty/Staff-focused demonstration: Tuesday, March 15th, 2pm – 3:30pm

Click here for more information on the LMS Evaluation process and timeline, and if you have any questions, please feel free to contact Joanne Dolan, Director for Academic Technology at jodolan@clarku.edu

Moodle Evaluation

13 years ago, Android was released, the Apple App Store and Spotify were launched, Bill Gates fully retired as chairperson of Microsoft, and Breaking Bad premiered on television. Also, in 2008, Clark University adopted Moodle as our Learning Management System (LMS).

Like most things in life, it’s important to regularly check that systems we use are still meeting our needs and supporting us as we grow. To that end, this academic year, Clark is doing an evaluation of Moodle.

Share your Experience

We want to know what you think about Moodle, and how it supports (or doesn’t support) your teaching, learning and work at Clark. Whether you use Moodle every day, once or twice a semester, or even if you’ve made the decision not to use Moodle, your experience matters, and we’d love to hear more.

We have a number of ways you can let us know what you think:

  • Survey: Click here to participate in a very quick survey about your experiences with Moodle. The survey has 6 questions and you can answer one, some or all. This is the quickest and easiest way for your opinions to help Clark evaluate Moodle.
  • Listening Sessions: ITS will host three listening sessions on 11/8, 11/9 and 11/10, where any constituent can join a Zoom meeting and talk to an ITS representative about their experience with Moodle. These sessions are open to students, faculty and staff and we’re eager to hear from you regardless of how regularly you use Moodle. Click here to register to attend a session.
  • Focus Groups: We know that groups use Moodle in different ways. ITS is offering to come and talk to your group (faculty cohorts, departmental meetings, student organizations, etc.) about their use of Moodle and their hopes for an LMS in the future. If you would like to organize an ITS representative to visit with your group and discuss Moodle, please contact Joanne Dolan at jodolan@clarku.edu

Moodle is one of the most used systems on campus and your feedback will help ITS and Clark make the right decision for you and the institution as we continue to learn and grow.

Click here for more information on the Moodle Evaluation project.