Canvas - Using the Official Syllabus Tool

This document describes the steps for using the UW-Madison Official Syllabus tool, available from within Canvas.

UW-Madison has modified the Canvas Syllabus tool to include an additional feature designed to capture and display the official, required UW-Madison syllabus information for the course. This tool is called the Official Syllabus, which is a link to AEFIS found on the Canvas Syllabus page. For more information about the Official Syllabus tool, see Canvas - Overview of the Official Syllabus Tool.

Release Notes: Expected Behaviors and Known Issues

Please be aware of the following expected behaviors. Manually merged Canvas course sections that do not match SIS data have known issues. As more tools integrate with each other utilizing SIS data, some of these behaviors will become moot points. Also the tool continues to undergo development improvements, so future versions will also offer solutions. 

  • Works inconsistently with the following types of course combinations in Canvas:
    • Lecture, lab, discussion multiple-range courses (displays only the syllabus for the primary range 1 section)
    • Meets-with courses within the same Canvas course (displays only the syllabus for the primary subject)
    • Meets-with section-level courses within the same Canvas course (displays only the syllabus for one of the sections)
    • Variable credit courses (displays the highest number of credits students can take)
  • Does not work with the following types of courses in Canvas:
    • Courses with zero students enrolled
    • Courses where the sections have been modified
  • The Canvas "Student View" tool, which instructors use to preview how something in a course appears for students, does not work with any LTI tool, therefore does not work with the Official Syllabus tool.
  • Currently only available for edit by instructors listed in the Student Information System (SIS).
  • Learning outcomes are editable prior to the end of the first week of the semester and while the course section is in the Faculty pending state.

Using the Official Syllabus Tool

Instructors

The Official Syllabus tool is available from within the Canvas Syllabus. To create an Official Syllabus and make it available to students, you must be enrolled as the instructor of record in SIS, and you must enter the information into the fields and then publish the syllabus. Note that some fields are pre-filled with data from the official UW-Madison course offering. If the Official Syllabus has not yet been created and published, students will see a message stating that the syllabus will be available after it is published.

If your Canvas course does not have any student enrollments yet, you will see an error message when you attempt to access the Official Syllabus. 

1. Access your Canvas course. 
2. Click the Syllabus link on the left navigation panel. The Canvas Course Syllabus page opens. 
3. Click the Official Syllabus button. The syllabus page opens, showing the course title and some pre-populated course information. Notice when you first access the Official Syllabus tool the status is Faculty Pending, which means the syllabus has not been published.
4. To modify the syllabus, click the Edit button. 
5. Complete the fields on the screen. Required fields are marked with a red "Required" tag; optional fields are marked with a green "Optional" tag. 
6. When you're finished making changes, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click the Save button. (If you'd like to close without saving changes, click the Exit Edit button near the top of the screen.)
7. When you're ready to publish the syllabus to students, click the Publish button at the top of the screen. You will notice your syllabus status change from Faculty Pending to Published. After a syllabus has been published, it can be viewed by students in the Canvas course and can be viewed by Institutional Administration.  

IMPORTANT: After the first week of the academic term, all syllabi within the Official Syllabus tool are automatically published. However, students will be able to view only the syllabi that have been published by the instructor (that is, they will not be able to view syllabi that have been auto-published). Instructors can continue to edit syllabi as long as they edit and publish to make changes available to students. However, learning outcomes cannot be edited after this auto publish date. 

The Canvas Student View does not work with the Official Syllabus tool. There is currently no way for instructors to preview the Official Syllabus as a student in Canvas. 

Students

Students can view the Official Syllabus for a course only if the instructor has published it. 

1. Access your Canvas course. 
2. Click the Syllabus link on the left navigation panel. The Canvas Course Syllabus page opens. 
3. Click the Official Syllabus button. If the instructor has published the syllabus using the Official Syllabus tool you will see information about your course on the screen. If the instructor has not published a syllabus within the Official Syllabus tool, you will see a message to that effect. 

Instead of using the Official Syllabus tool, the instructor may have chosen to publish the syllabus elsewhere. For guidance, please consult your instructor. 

Other Types of Users

Currently, the Official Syllabus tool is available only to the instructor of record and to the students enrolled in the course. It is not available to other individuals in the course, including course designers and support staff. Expanded functionality for other types of users is being explored. 

See Also:




Keywords:canvas syllabus AEFIS accreditation syllabi outcomes federal compliance template credit credits beta   Doc ID:79039
Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW Madison
Created:2018-01-05 17:01 CDTUpdated:2018-09-06 14:09 CDT
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, Learn@UW Madison
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