Day 1: Introduction To Canvas

The first day of Canvas Camp is about getting to know each other and the Canvas software. Before we dive into content, we will spend some time learning about one another and what brought us to Canvas Camp.

After these introductions, we’ll start familiarizing ourselves with Canvas. Everyone will login to Canvas from and follow along with a short demonstration. We will transition into course development after walking through the D2L to Canvas content migration process. This will give everyone the opportunity to start exploring Canvas from the context of their D2L content.

Alternatively, you are welcome to start from scratch and begin uploading your materials to your Canvas course from your computer.


Import D2L course contents (optional) – If you want the contents from a D2L course, they may already be in Canvas. Check your list of All Course in Canvas to see what courses are already present. If needed, follow this video guide to help you migrate a course from D2L to Canvas.

Explore Canvas – After you some content into a Canvas Course, start exploring how it’s organized. If you want to start uploading content to a course, navigate to the Files section and begin uploading files from your computer. As a frame of reference, here’s a video overview for Canvas.

Prepare course contents for next session – Next session will focus on organizing your materials in Canvas. In preparation for tomorrow, start gathering all of your course materials (i.e. assignments, presentation slides, readings, etc.) and store them in one folder on your computer. This will make uploading your materials much easier over the next few days.

Review this website and your Goals – To prepare for Canvas Camp, preview the 4 daily pages of this website to familiarize yourself with each days’ goals and content.


Overview of Canvas – Video guide:

Exporting a D2L course and importing into Canvas – Video guide:

Uploading files to CanvasFollow this guide to learn how to upload files from your computer to Canvas.

Edit Canvas content – Canvas uses a Rich Content Editor as the main mechanism to edit content. Anywhere you see it appear in Canvas means you can add text, picture, video, hyperlinks, and more to that content in Canvas. We highly recommend this video guide:

Learn the Rich Content Editor once, and you’ll know how to use it across Canvas!

Canvas Commons – Built into Canvas is the opportunity to share course materials like assignments, quizzes, and resources. You can import these contents into your own course if you desire. I recommend searching the Canvas Commons for materials in your discipline and as a way to obtain ideas and example Canvas courses. Want to learn more about the Canvas Commons? Checkout this page of information. Alternatively, learn how to use the Canvas Commons from this page.

Use official Canvas courses versus creating experimental courses – All of your official Canvas courses should be listed in the “All Courses” section of Canvas. This includes both future and past courses. If a course is not available when you think it should be, this typically means you are not currently listed as the instructor of record for that course.

Additionally, Canvas has the feature that you can create your own courses to experiment with or for informal uses like facilitating book groups or research groups. Be aware that courses you create will not contain any people until you invite them to your course. If you are unsure whether a course is official or not, the best indicator is to see if it contains students by navigating to the People section.

Keegan’s Intro To Canvas – This is a Canvas Course that I use to give an overview of the Canvas software. It may appear as a Canvas Course, but it is actually a presentation in disguise.