TUN Canvas Training Follow-Up

I want to thank those who were able to attend the Canvas training sessions this past Monday and Tuesday.  It was a pleasure meeting each of you, and I look forward to continuing to work with you throughout the Canvas transition.  For those you were unable to attend, the session that I provided was similar to the “General Canvas Training Session” that is provided via Zoom by the TCUS team.  You can sign up for this session, or any of the other sessions listed, by going to http://www.touro.edu/canvas and click on the “TRAINING CALENDAR” option (note all of the times listed on the calendar are in Eastern).

The TCUS team has also added new support resources for students and faculty:

In addition to the TCUS resources, we also have created a Canvas transition website for the Western Division – see https://western.touro.edu/cilt/canvas-transition/ – which contains the transition plans for TUN and TUC, a training schedule, and faculty and student resources for using Canvas (that are specific to the issues and procedures within TUN and TUC).

Be sure to check out these resources.  If you have any questions about Canvas or the transition, please contact Jim O’Connor or myself.

Michael K. Barbour, Fellow

Quick Resource – Teaching Online

A quick note for today…   Here’s some great references for online teaching:


Jim O’Connor Ph.D.

TUN COM Canvas Training Sessions

Please note that the Canvas Transition Co-Chairs Jim O’Connor and Michael Barbour will be delivering basic introduction to Canvas training sessions on:

Monday, 05 November

9am-10:30am (The Bullpen – Conference Room D-1102)
10:30am-noon (The Bullpen – Conference Room D-1102)
2pm-3:30pm (The Bullpen – Conference Room D-1102)
3:30pm-5pm (The Bullpen – Conference Room D-1102)

Tuesday, 06 November

9am-10:30am (Classroom 5 – Teaching Space C-2163)
10:30am-noon (Classroom 5 – Teaching Space C-2163)
2pm-3:30pm (Classroom 5 – Teaching Space C-2163)
3:30pm-5pm (Classroom 5 – Teaching Space C-2163)

Each session will run approximately 90 minutes in length and will cover basic account management, how to export content from Blackboard, import that content into Canvas, and how to create the main types of content in Canvas.  These sessions are primarily intended for COM faculty (i.e., the examples will be formatted using their content), but any faculty and/or staff how would like to attend are invited.

Be sure that you have an active Canvas account prior to the session by logging into TouroOne and clicking on the “Log In To Canvas” button.


If you have any problems with logging in or any questions at all, please let me know.

Michael K. Barbour

CILT Teaching Tips

Dear Colleagues,

From the Chronicle of Higher Education is a 3-minute video – https://www.chronicle.com/article/3-Tips-for-the-Minutes-Before/244357 – entitled “Three Minutes Before Class.”

Take a few minutes to watch this video and glean some excellent ideas for improving your teaching.

Questions or comments?

Jim O’Connor Ph.D.

Canvas Tech Tip of the Week! Peer Review

Canvas has a Peer Review tool that is great for individual assignments such as a written paper where you would like other students to critique the assignment. You can also use the Peer Review for group assignments by clicking on the box “Allow intra-group peer reviews”. Peer reviews can be manually assigned or automatically assigned by Canvas. I would recommend the second option. The peer review option can be found under any Assignment’s properties when in Edit mode.

Debbie Millican

An Interesting Use of Canvas – TP Msg. #1672 Making Online Ed Personal

The Tomorrow’s Professor eNewsletter is a weekly faculty development e-mail provided by the Office of the Vice Provost of Teaching and Learning at Stanford University.  It covers issues ranging from assessment to instructional design to various pedagogical topics to issues of research.

In this issue, Carolyn Gentle-Genitty – an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at Indiana University – discusses how she uses Canvas to make her online course material and interactions with students more personal in an effort to increase her social presence in the online course and make students feel less isolated (if you’d really like to dig into social presence theory I would recommend this book chapter).  Many of the strategies that she touches upon can also be incorporated into the online resources and interactions that we have with students in our face-to-face classes.

I have copied and pasted the complete eNewsletter below, but you can also view this edition of the eNewsletter online by clicking here.

To subscribe to the eNewsletter, click here.

Michael Barbour

“I want them to understand that a three-credit course may translate into more than nine hours of work per week. If they know exactly when, on what weekday, we discuss their papers, they can become very efficient at structuring their own time. Structure is liberating.”


Making Online Ed Personal


The posting below looks at ways to use the popular Canvas Learning Management System to make online learning more personal.  It is by Carolyn Gentle-Genitty, PhD, associate professor in the School of Social Work and assistant vice president for University Academic Policy, director University Transfer Office at Indiana University, Indianapolis, IN. Her blogs can be found at: http://blogs.iu.edu/iupuiacademicaffairsfacultyfellows/category/online-education/ Copyright © 2018 The Trustees of Indiana University. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission.

Rick Reis

UP NEXT: Every Semester Needs a Plan

Tomorrow’s Teaching and Learning

———- 712 words ———-

Making Online Ed Personal

IU Online Newsletter, August 30, 2018

“Social work is all about connecting with people,” says School of Social Work Professor Dr. Carolyn Gentle-Genitty. “The same is true of effective online teaching.” Named IUPUI’s [Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis] first Faculty Fellow in Online Education in 2016, Gentle-Genitty has a passion for blending the best of face-to-face and online teaching in “unique and breathtaking ways.”

Gentle-Genitty wants her students to experience the full depth and enjoyment of online learning. To that end, she builds a framework inside Canvas that helps students understand the logistics and culture of the online setting. She anticipates the questions that students (especially those new to online learning) might have and explains logistical issues like how to navigate a course site, how to interact with other students, how and when to interact with her, and what it means to “be present” in a course.

Since students who choose online learning often have multiple other commitments, Gentle-Genitty makes very clear how much time students can expect to invest preparing for class, listening to lectures, doing homework, and taking part in chat rooms. “Very specific information gives students a realistic picture of the commitment they’re making,” says Gentle-Genitty. “I want them to understand that a three-credit course may translate into more than nine hours of work per week. If they know exactly when, on what weekday, we discuss their papers, they can become very efficient at structuring their own time. Structure is liberating.”

Her course framework enables students to be organized and connected. It comprises a teaching presence, a cognitive space where students interact with content, and a social presence—online discussion forums and chat rooms—where she and her students interact, build personal connections, form teams, and work in small groups. Students see the course syllabus, learning objectives, reading materials, announcements, videos, and hyperlinked modules. Each module spells out learning expectations and outcomes.

Gentle-Genitty makes Canvas her ally in effective online teaching. She explains, “It can be more effective to teach online because of the data and analytics in Canvas. You can measure student comprehension. Canvas can create grids and pie charts that provide more detailed, personal, and multidimensional insights into student performance than traditional teaching allows. You can measure other, more subtle kinds of competencies, like diversity. I spell out what I mean by diversity, assign it a rubric, and it automatically loads when I’m grading an assignment. I can observe student activity—what course materials they used, how often, and how much time they spent. I combine this with performance data to learn where I may need to adjust the way I deliver content to aid comprehension. If a student who is doing well looked at a certain file 25 times in a given week, that could signal I need to clarify something.”

Some students hesitate to take online courses because they assume support will be scant, their questions won’t receive timely answers, and they’ll miss having a community of students to talk to. As a proponent of Quality Matters, Gentle-Genitty believes in the power of “regular and substantive interaction” with her online students. Along with regular online discussions and chat rooms, Gentle-Genitty uses Canvas data on student performance and comprehension as springboards for individual email connections with students. She may recognize the depth of someone’s insight, highlight another’s strengths, or offer help in an area that someone finds challenging. Gentle-Genitty finds that students love earning badges and are motivated by being singled out. So she links certain learning outcomes to badges. One student earns a “Critical Thinking” badge. Another earns the “Ready to Teach” badge and is paired with a student who needs a hand. All this builds connections and community.

Effective online learning also involves human behavior and civil discourse. Those steeped in today’s 280-character, rapid-fire tweet culture sometimes need refreshers on the etiquette of email. Gentle-Genitty prepares her students to be responsible online citizens, including using salutations and closings, avoiding boldface and caps, and writing clear subject lines. These are life lessons that facilitate communication beyond the classroom.

The preparation that goes into teaching online pays off. Students find Gentle-Genitty’s practice and enthusiasm infectious. An initially hesitant online learner commented, “I have never been engaged in a course—face-to-face or online—where I felt so connected. I learned a lot. I earned ‘Student of the Week.’”

To read more about Gentle-Genitty’s practice, check out her blogs and her “12 Tips for Teaching Online.”

A Technique For Increasing Deeper Learning And Higher Order Thinking: “Today I Learned”

Dear Colleagues,

“The research on how people learn continues to show the value in helping students make meaning and learn through reflection. The process of reflection helps students take a step back to carefully consider that they learned, absorb the information, and process what it means to them. Fortunately, fostering reflection in the classroom can be relatively quick and easy.” In the post below from The Higher Ed Professor, a simple, but powerful reflection activity, “Today I Learned” is described.


Questions or comments?

Jim O’Connor Ph.D.

Creating A Syllabus

Dear Colleagues,

The Chronicle of Higher Education has published an excellent guide to creating effective course syllabi.


As you transition to Canvas, take the time to upgrade your syllabus using some of these ideas.

Let us know how we can assist you.

Comments? Questions?

Jim O’Connor

Additional Canvas Training

I wanted to make sure that everyone was aware of the fact that the TCUS Canvas Team have added more Canvas training session to their Canvas training calendar.  To see the training topics and when these sessions are offered, go to the main Touro Canvas website at https://www.touro.edu/canvas and click on the TRAINING CALENDAR button (the direct link is: https://touro-iits-dept.s3.amazonaws.com/canvas/calendar.html).  Some of the topics that have been listed include:
  • General Canvas Training Sessions
  • Canvas Course Usability Testing
  • Canvas Rubrics
  • Turn-it-in plagiarism checker
Additional sessions will be added.  Remember that all sessions are offered via Zoom.
Previous topics have included:
  • Discussion Forums
  • Assignments and the Gradebook
  • Quizzes, and Question Banks
  • Canvas Outcomes
  • Student Group Assignments
  • Peer Review Assignments
Finally, a reminder that the transition website for the Western Division and TUC is available at https://western.touro.edu/cilt/canvas-transition/.  This site contains a variety of items, including how to videos and hand-outs for both faculty and students.  We are adding to these faculty and student resources every few days.
As always, if you have any questions please let Jim or myself know.
Michael K. Barbour

Canvas Tech Tip of the Week! Finding Dead Links

Dead links can be a nuisance to end users of your course. To avoid this, you should validate your links about once a week.

1.       Open your course, go down to Settings on the Course Menu.

2.       On the right-hand side, you will see a button

3.       Once you open this page, click on Start Link Validation

4.       You will be returned a list of any broken links within the content of your course. Go to the page indicated and correct the broken link.

5.       Run the Link Validator again. Continue this process until you get the message below.

Debbie Millican