We are considering rolling out Design Tools for Canvas to a limited number of instructional designers at our Institution. How will instructors be affected since the instructional designers are the only ones that would have access to these tools. In particular:

  1. We really like the ability Design Tools provides to feature the current modules on the home page of the course. If instructional designers set that up, is it something that instructors will be able to use/edit?
  2. If we create courses using institutional template pages how does that affect the instructors ability to edit the content?
  3. Are there any other issues that we should take into consideration when only a couple of people have access to these tools?


Let's see if we can answer your questions:


1. Thoughts about adding the module details to the front page using Design Tools without instructors having access to the tools

Once the module list has been setup using Design Tools, it will work just fine with a few exceptions

  • Instructors cannot manually mark the current module or adjust date ranges for modules (if you are using that feature).
  • If the name of a module is changed or another module is added there is no way for the instructor to update the module list short of manually editing the links or adding in new links using Canvas' native content editing features. 
2. Use of template pages

A template page is just a way of quickly copying the html content of an existing page into another page. Once a page has been created from a template page it is simply another page. Instructors can edit the content just like they can on any other page using Canvas' native rich content editor.

3. Other Considerations

One of the biggest drawbacks that you will encounter with the limited user approach is actually one of the things that started Utah State down the path of creating Design Tools in the first place. If instructors need to do a lot of editing in the Canvas rich content editor, they will be doing so without the benefit of seeing all of the CSS that is applied to their content when it is displayed to their students. The theme and style aspects of Design Tools relies on CSS brought in through your global CSS. Design Tools also dynamically adds some additional helper CSS to the editor using JavaScript.