Linking to help in Canvas

A couple of weeks I finished up an online instructor training course in Canvas. And one of the best ideas from the course wasn’t something specifically taught, but something in the way that they had the course setup. In each assignment where we had to turn something in they included a link to the Canvas documentation on how to turn in an assignment.

As much as some students struggle with turning in assignments, I think this is something that I’m going to do next year.

But I want to take it a step farther and make it easy for students to find Canvas help when they need it.  The plan is to add a link to the sidebar to the Canvas help.

External app

There’s an LTI app that’s going to make this really easy. Open up that link in another tab. It should look like this.

What we’re going to do is paste the link to the Canvas help into the redirect field. The URL is . Go ahead and paste that into the URL Redirect field. You’re also going to want to check the box next to Enable Course Navigation. That way the link will show up in the Canvas sidebar.

Once you’ve done that, scroll down the to the bottom of the page. You’ll see a configuration URL. Copy that. You’ll need it in a bit.

Adding the app

Next head on over to your Canvas course and click on the Settings link in the sidebar and then the Apps tab. Depending on how your school has setup your course you may see some apps already loaded.

Click on the blue + App button. It’ll bring up a screen that looks like this.

You may have to change the dropdown under Configuration Type to By URL.

Give then whatever name you want the link to have. I called mine Canvas Help. And then paste the config URL into the bottom field. Press the submit button and the tool should show up on the apps list.

It won’t show up in the sidebar yet, but once you change to any other page in your course it will be there.

Click the Canvas Help link and you should see something like this.


And you’re done. Now your students will have a link where they can go if they need help with Canvas. Newsletter

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