Project Description


Canvas is Middlebury’s learning management system, and is used widely by faculty and students. Faculty who choose to use the platform can provision Canvas sites via Course Hub. Please note that Canvas sites are not created automatically.

Canvas allows you to:

  • Conduct online, asynchronous discussions with your students;
  • Collect assignments, provide feedback, and post grades;
  • Post links; upload documents, videos, audio files, and more;
  • Post deadlines and reminders through the calendar and announcements;
  • Manage group work assignments;
  • Integrate video conferencing with individual students, a whole class, or guest speakers;
  • Communicate easily with the whole class, specific groups, or individual students.

All Middlebury faculty, students, and staff can log into Canvas using their Middlebury credentials (just your username and password—no need for the entire email address unless you’re using a Middlebury guest account).

Logging into your account:

  1. Go to
  2. Enter your Middlebury credentials

You can also access Canvas from your mobile devices via the Canvas app:

The Canvas Commons streamlines sharing and replicating learning activities through Canvas. With Commons, you can share the resources you create in Canvas with other Middlebury faculty. When you share a resource to the Commons, no student data will be included. Your colleagues can then download that content and use it in their own Canvas sites. You can share different levels of resources to the Commons, including:

  • a cool homepage you designed
  • an assignment with specific settings your colleagues might want to replicate
  • your entire course

If you don’t want to to design your Canvas site from scratch, DLINQ has created a template for you to use that is available via the Commons. The templates are aligned with the Middlebury Online Course Design rubric, so using the template means that you’ll have a head start on aligning your course with the rubric!

The template needs to be imported early in the course design process, before you start creating your content (otherwise, you may overwrite your content). Once you create your empty Canvas course in Course Hub, your next step is to import the template. Templates are available in the Canvas Commons.

To import the Middlebury College/Institute template into your course:

    • In your Canvas course, click the “Import from Commons” button in the right-hand menu. This takes you to the Canvas Commons interface.
    • In the search bar, type in Middlebury
    • In the search results you’ll see a course called Middlebury College/institute Fall 2020 template. Click that link.
    • Click the blue “Import/download” button
    • Type your course name into the course search box and select your course from the results.
    • Click the “Import into Courses” button
    • Go to your course and you should see the template now in your course. (If not, wait a few minutes and then go to your course again.)

If you prefer to watch the process, this brief video shows how to import a template into a Canvas course.

Middlebury Canvas course sites include a new toolset called DesignPLUS that allows faculty to design their own templates, as well as enhance the visual design and usability of their courses without needing advanced computer coding skills. If you’d like to explore these tools within your Canvas site, you’ll need to first unhide them.

To display the Design Tools from within Canvas, select “edit” on a page, and then use the keystroke combo Alt + Shift + D. You’ll notice that a new toolbar will display on the righthand side of your screen. To ensure that the toolbar displays without having to use the keystroke combo each time, when you have the design tools bar displayed, select the gear icon (settings) in the upper righthand corner of the toolbar set. When the Design Tool Settings section displays, select the options to “Automatically launch tools” and “Show Launch button”. This will make it faster for you to access design tools as you work.

We also recommend adding the Multi-Tool to your Canvas course menu. The Multi-Tool includes three separate tools: the template creator, the module builder, and the due date modifier.  Add the Multi-Tool to your Canvas course menu by going to Settings > Navigation, and dragging “Multi-Tool” from the hidden navigation items in the bottom list, up to the top list. Don’t forget to click “Save” at the bottom of the page to then save your changes! The Multi-Tool should then be accessible from your Canvas course lefthand menu.

Resources for learning more about DesignPlus Tools for Canvas include:

  1. DesignPlus User Guide – Canvas course that walks user through different options in DesignPlus.
  2. DesignTools YouTube channel – Video tutorials to help you get started.
  3. University of Minnesota’s Design Tools for Canvas website – a variety of resources designed to help you find the support you need

Designing Homepages in Canvas

Please feel free to browse this site as a student:
INTD 0254A: Sample Site

Contact us if you would like to have access to the site as a teacher.

Student Orientation to Canvas

  • This self-guided Canvas course is designed to help Middlebury students get to know Canvas. While Instructure—the makers of Canvas LMS—provides guides for Canvas users (both instructors and learners), this course provides a step-by-step tour of the most common learning management features.

Faculty Introduction to Teaching with Canvas

  • Follow this link to login to Middlebury Canvas and access this self-guided resource with a focus on teaching in the Canvas environment. Working through this Canvas resource is highly recommended for all faculty new to the platform. For those interested in Canvas’ pedagogical affordances, check out this blogpost.
  • Follow this link to access a library of video tutorials for Canvas for faculty and students. (Student videos can be helpful to see what your student will see based on different configurations in Canvas and can serve as support for questions they might have.)

For faculty tech support/trouble shooting, please refer to Instructure’s 24/7 phone [+1-833-890-4166] and real-time chat support available to via the Help tab when logged into Canvas.

Additional resources include:

You can also contact us with questions and/or request a one-on-one consultation with a member of the DLINQ staff.

Permissions Student Observer TA Auxillary Grader Designer Teacher Assessment/Viewer
Add/remove other teachers, course designers, or TAs to the course X X X X X X
Add/remove students from the course X X X X
Manage course content X X X X
Post to discussions X
See a list of users X
View and Edit All Grades X X X
Send and Receive Notifications via Canvas X X

Zoom is, by default, integrated into all Middlebury Canvas courses. You should see a link in your Canvas course menu on the left. 

If you are planning to use Zoom for class meetings, we highly recommend scheduling those Zoom meetings within your Canvas course, rather than using the Zoom desktop app. The benefits to scheduling Zoom class meetings within your Canvas course are:

  • Your students will have access and reminders to join class meetings right from Canvas.
  • You don’t have to email or otherwise send meeting invitations, links, or passwords to students, which they might then lose.
  • Students don’t have to keep track of meeting links or passwords.
  • If you cloud record your Zoom meetings that you’ve scheduled within Canvas, you and your students will have direct access to those recordings right from Canvas.

To schedule a Zoom meeting from within Canvas:

  • Navigate to Zoom in your lefthand course menu. Note: depending on how you have your navigation menu ordered, Zoom may appear in a different place within the menu.

Screen capture of Zoom in Canvas

  • Click the “Schedule a New Meeting” button at the top right of the Zoom page.
  • Give the meeting a name, and choose the start date, the start time, and the time zone.
  • If the meeting will occur regularly, tick the “Recurring meeting” checkbox under the time zone field. Select the recurrence period (daily, weekly, monthly, no fixed time) and how often the meeting will repeat. If the meeting will be weekly, you can choose multiple days to repeat it.
  • Set the end date.
  • If you will be inviting a guest speaker to a specific class meeting, you may want to add them as an “Alternative Host” for that individual meeting. Doing so gives them hosting privileges for that meeting (so they can, for example, share their screen and control breakout rooms). Designating them as an alternative host also will generate an automated email to them that includes a link to the meeting.
  • Click “Save.”

To edit or delete a Zoom meeting from within Canvas:

  • Navigate to Zoom in your lefthand course menu.
  • Click on the meeting name from your list of meetings.
  • Scroll down and click “Edit this Meeting” or “Delete this Meeting.”
  • If editing, make the desired changes and then click “Save.”

Additional Notes: 

  • Zoom meetings that you schedule within Canvas are also accessible from your Zoom desktop app or on your Zoom web account. However, the same is not true in reverse. Meetings that you schedule from your desktop app or on the Zoom web account cannot be added or transferred to your Canvas Zoom.
  • You cannot pre-assign breakout rooms or enable language interpretation for a session from Zoom within Canvas. However, once you have scheduled your class Zoom meetings in Canvas, you can navigate to and edit your meetings from there to add any breakout room pre-assignments. Changes made via your Zoom web account will be reflected in your Canvas Zoom, as long as you originated those meetings in Canvas to begin with.
  • You can choose to hide the Zoom link for students, if you are not planning to use it. In your Canvas course, go to Settings > Navigation and move Zoom from the top bank of items to the bottom bank, and click “Save.”