Canvas: New Quizzes

What is New Quizzes?

Classic Quiz has been the quiz engine in Canvas for a long time. New Quizzes is a new quiz engine that will replace Classic Quizzes. The Canvas guides state, “New Quizzes is a quiz engine that integrates with Canvas as an LTI tool and replaces the classic quizzes functionality currently existing in Canvas. Instructors can use New Quizzes to create quizzes using a variety of questions types.” New Quizzes offers some new question types and efficiency for setting accommodations. But there are limitations as well. New Quizzes does not support ‘quiz-as-survey’ in the way that Classic Quiz did. What follows is a summary of the timeline for transitioning from classic to New Quizzes, recommendations for migrating from Classic to New Quizzes and resources to help you in this effort.

Classic Quiz – New Quizzes Timeline

We need to prepare ourselves to use the new quiz engine. Classic Quizzes is scheduled to be sunset June 30, 2024. So we have a little bit of time, which is good. Instructure is still actively developing New Quizzes. There is some new functionality and previous functionality that is yet to be available. More on that latter point in Known Issues. The other positive side of this is that we have time to practice using New Quizzes and migrate content from Classic Quiz to New Quizzes.

LU Plan for NQ

What follows are the options we have available to us and how we plan to roll out New Quizzes. Instructure has provided three levels of sitewide settings to assist with migration from Classic Quizzes to New Quizzes.
They are:

  • New Quizzes migration during course import/copy
    Enabling this will provide instructors the option to migrate all quizzes in a course to New Quizzes when they import or copy a course.
  • New Quizzes migration enabled by default
    This means that the option to migrate all quizzes in a course will be selected by default, but may be deselected.
  • New Quizzes migration required
    This setting will force all quizzes to be migrated upon import.

Our plan is to enable the first option at the end of Winter term. This will give those preparing for the Spring term who want to try New Quiz the opportunity to migrate current quizzes to New Quizzes. Once these settings are enabled it will also be possible to migrate individual quizzes. Next, on July 1, 2022 we plan to enable the second option to make migration enabled by default. Forced migration will be enabled on July 1, 2023.

The timeline in short is:

  • New Quizzes migration during course import/copy – March 14, 2022
  • New Quizzes migration enabled by default – July 1, 2022
  • New Quizzes migration required – July 1, 2023

What’s New with New Quizzes?

There are a number of new features or enhancements that come with New Quizzes. A list of some of them may be reviewed below.

Creating a Quiz with New Quiz

Creating a quiz with new quiz looks a little different than Classic Quiz. You can follow this link to see how to create a New Quiz. There are a few things I would like to point out about some of the specific differences.

The first difference appears when you decide to create a quiz. If you create a quiz from the Quizzes page you will presented with a pop-up asking you to select your desired quiz engine.

The "Choose a Quiz Engine" pop-up window presenting options to select Classic Quizzes or New Quizzes.
The “Choose a Quiz Engine” pop-up.

From here you can choose which quiz engine you desire to use. Please be aware of the Remember my choice for this course button. If you make a selection by mistake you can reset your quiz engine choice from the Quiz Options menu at any time.

The same choice of quiz engine is available if you create a quiz from within a module.

Instructors may choose which quiz engine they choose when creating a quiz in a module.
Quiz engine choice when Creating a quiz in a module.

After choosing the New Quizzes engine you will see a screen similar to Classic Quizzes for entering the quiz settings such as name, points, due date and such. One difference on this page is the presence of the Build button located in the lower right.

Save options on the quiz settings page. The buttons are listed horizontally left to right in the following order: Cancel, Save&publish, Save, and Build.
New Quizzes Build button.

Clicking the Build button will allow you to add questions to your New Quiz.

New Quiz Build main screen.
New Quiz Build main screen.

This page allows you add a title and over all quiz instructions. There is also a collapsible question navigation menu on the left (expanded in the image below).

New Quiz Question Navigator

Next is Settings. This page allows you to choose from the following options:

  • Shuffle Questions
  • Shuffle Answers
  • One Question at a time
  • Require a student access code
  • Time limit
  • Filter IP addresses
  • Allow Calculator
  • Allow multiple attempts
  • Restrict Student result view
New Quiz Settings pane.
New Quiz Settings

Next, is Reports. There are currently two available: Quiz and Item Analysis and Outcomes Analysis.

New Quiz Reports pane.
New Quiz Reports

Lastly is the Moderate pane. This provides you access to accommodations for students and monitoring attempts. One benefit of New Quiz is that you can set accommodations for a student across all quizzes in a course versus having to set these for each quiz. Please note that this will not apply if you subsequently create a Classic Quiz. You will still need to set the accommodations for each Classic Quiz.

New Quiz Moderate pane.
New Quiz Moderate pane

You can set an accommodation by clicking the pencil icon located in the ‘Accommodation’ column for each student.

Migrating Classic Quizzes to New Quizzes

Instructure is providing a couple different ways to migrate classic quizzes to New Quizzes. Please note that instructors cannot revert from New Quizzes to Classic Quizzes.

Please Note: Quizzes imported into Canvas from a Moodle course backup file will be converted to Classic quizzes and not New Quizzes. If you want those to be New Quizzes you will need to follow the steps in the Migrating an Individual Quiz section below.

Migrating on Course Import/Copy

It is possible to migrate all quizzes from Classic to New Quizzes during a course/Copy or Import. Unless you choose to select specific content all quizzes will be converted to New Quizzes. All Classic quizzes will be removed from the course.

Canvas Course import options containing choice to import existing quizzes as New Quizzes.
New Quiz Migration on Import

Once the import completes you will receive a message containing the following infirmation:

Your Classic Quizzes have been migrated to New Quizzes!
Please note:

  • Text No Question has moved to a Stimulus; please add a question so it can display within the quiz.
  • Classic Quizzes with New RCE audio/video may not have moved completely; these will need to be rebuilt.
  • LaTex equations are currently migrated as images, and the questions should not be edited.

We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for your patience as we continue to improve the migration experience!

Migrating an Individual Quiz

If you do not want to migrate all your quizzes at once it is possible to do so one at a time. This may be done by clicking the kebab menu to the right of the desired quiz and then select Migrate.

Quiz edit option showing the Migrate option.
Migrate link in the quiz edit menu.

Choosing this option will only migrate that single quiz. Additionally the originally Classic Quiz version will remain in the course. In this way you could make multiple copies of a quiz if desired.

Question Bank vs. Item Bank

Classic Quizzes can make use of Question Banks. New Quizzes can make use of Item Banks. There currently is not a way to convert a Question Bank into an Item Bank. Canvas is working on a bulk migration option, but currently items must be added to an Item Bank individually. This must be done from within a New Quiz. The steps to do so are below.

  1. Open the quiz and click the Build button.
  2. Click the pencil icon to edit a question.
  3. Expand the Item Banking area.
  4. Click the Add to bank link.
  5. Add the question to an existing or new bank.
Adding a question to an Item Bank, steps 1-4.
Add Item to bank pop-up, step 5.

Known Issues

While there are some benefits with New Quizzes there are also some limitations. Hopefully these will be addressed soon by the Canvas development team.

  • Manually graded questions do not appear in To Do.
    The issue means that essay questions do not appear in an instructors “To Do” section of their Dashboard page. This issue has brought a fairly large outcry from users, but has yet to be integrated. Please feel free to add your voice.
  • Questions must be added to Item banks manually.
    My understanding is the developers are working on a tol to batch import from question banks into item banks but this has not been completed. Items must currently be imported individually. The best way to do this right now is to add all questions from a question bank into a quiz and then migrate the quiz. This will allow an instructor to add them to an Item bank.


Microsoft Whiteboard New Features

Microsoft has announced new features for it’s Whiteboard app. The scenario in the video pertains to Teams, but all the new functions pertain to the web version of the whiteboard as well. You should be able to use these tools whether on a Mac or Windows PC.

Some the notable (pun intended) additions are:

  • board templates (1:13)
  • the ability to import PowerPoint slides (3:25)
  • the ability to import PDF or Word documents (4:47)
  • importing multiple images at once (5:27)
  • quick polls can now be done with Reactions (6:08)

[FIXED] Canvas Studio – Assignment Issue

A little over two weeks ago I posted about an issue with assignment file submissions and Canvas Studio. A fix has been developed and pushed to production.

Students can now successfully submit media through Canvas Studio for assignments configured to allow File uploads as the submission type. The student interface for such assignments appears as:

The submission page for a Canvas assignment showing the options to upload a file, submit through Canvas Studio, and more.
Assignment – student file submission page

Students can click the Studio button to access their Studio Library and select the media they wish to submit. Once the assignment has been submitted the instructor may view the media in Speedgrader.

Canvas – Make Sure Your Browser is Up-To-Date

It would be a shame if you entered grades and came back later to find them gone. this scenario was recently reported to me. The word from Canvas support was that an out-of-date browser (Firefox in this case) was the culprit.

Regardless of the browser you use please make sure you keep it up to date. This is important as Canvas is a web-based tool.

Contact the Helpdesk if you need assistance updating your browser(s) on Lawrence-owned computers.


Canvas Studio – Assignment Issue

We recently became aware of an issue that is created by an account setting, Assignment Enhancements – Student, and Canvas Studio. The issue is described in detail here. We have contacted support and been added to the open engineering ticket. As soon as a fix is created we will be notified. The issue presents itself when a student attempts to submit a video from Canvas Studio as a file upload. The effect is that the upload fails and a document containing “Invalid Launch” is produced. This is what instructors will see in Speedgrader.

There are two workarounds for this issue: only allow students to submit to the assignment via Media Recording, or by embedding the Studio video in a Text Entry submission. I strongly recommend the latter.

Canvas submissions settings. Online text entry is selected.

If you have assignments in which students have already made submissions, you should be able to change the submission type setting without losing any data/submissions.

Canvas: Clarification About Inbox and E-mail

It appears that I was mistaken about the way that the Inbox connects to LU email.  I thought that messages would be copied to LU email, but this is not the case. Inbox messages/conversations are not copied directly to email.

While Inbox messages are not copied to email it is possible to set an immediate notification which will be sent to your email. The notification should contain the contents of the message. It is possible to reply to Canvas from the email notification.

I tested this and was able to reply to the notification message from email and have it posted back to the student Inbox. There is some lag when replying this way. The response is much faster through Inbox. I contacted Canvas support and they mentioned that a reply from email may lag up to as much as an hour depending on the server activity. If a message is time-sensitive I recommend replying from the Canvas site.

Canvas: Observer Role

It is now possible for an instructor to add a user as an Observer in a Canvas course.

From the Canvas documentation:

Observers can

  • View and read announcements
  • View assignments index page
  • View the calendar
  • Join conferences, if invited
  • Join collaborations, if invited
  • View personal inbox
  • Send conversation messages to instructor and student they are observing*
  • View the dashboard
  • View and read discussions
  • View files unless they are locked
  • View grades, view assignment due dates and comments, and print grades*
  • View modules and see due dates and point values
  • View pages and contribute if the instructor enables the Anyone can edit it setting
  • View profile pictures, if available
  • View syllabus
  • View outcomes
  • View quizzes index page

Observers cannot

  • Comment on announcements or discussions
  • Submit assignments or quizzes
  • View course rosters
  • Send conversation messages to students in the course they are not observing
  • View locked files or folders
  • Join groups
  • View unpublished courses
  • Access the Chat tool
  • Reserve appointment slots in the Scheduler
  • View grade audit trail

* These capabilities are only available if the Observer is linked with another student account. Linking an Observer must be manually completed. Because we are not doing this the Observer role cannot access grade information.

Canvas Q&As

Questions have arisen during Canvas training sessions. I am listing those questions and answers here and will update as questions are added.

What do I do for a student with an incomplete?

We set term beginning and end dates within Canvas. Once the term passes students will only have view access of a course. If the student has an “Incomplete” they will need a way to access the course to submit unfinished work. As an instructor you can allow a student access by setting course participation dates. The course participation dates will override the term dates. Please note that doing so will change the access for all students in the course. You may want to unpublish all else except what the select student(s) will need.

Can I import grades into the Canvas gradebook?

The instructions on this page share the steps to import grades into Canvas.

How do I download and re-upload at once all student submissions?

It is possible to download all student submissions to an assignment.

It is also possible to re-upload student files back to Canvas. You will want to make sure you have not changed the names of the submission files from your bulk download. Canvas will not be able to recognize the files that should be replaced if the file names are different.

Is it possible for me to create an anonymous survey?

Anonymous survey is possible. (Select Survey Type, point 4) One note about the anonymous survey:  
“The anonymous option can be enabled or disabled before or after a survey has received submissions, allowing a user with sufficient permissions to see a student’s identity and responses. To collect fully anonymous survey responses, you may want to use a third-party survey tool.”

How can I import a course from Moodle to Canvas?

Here a link to a video demonstration of how to backup a course in Moodle and import into Canvas.

Why don’t I see any past enrollments on my “All Courses” page?

Whether a course appears in current or past enrollments is controlled by the term dates. If all the courses listed are for Fall ‘21 and beyond, then there will be no past enrollments.

How can I access and manage question banks in Canvas?

Question banks are imported from Moodle courses which contain them. Here is some information about accessing and managing question banks.

Does the Canvas quiz/survey support question branching?

This doesn’t currently exist in the quiz tool or currently in the new quiz engine Canvas is developing. There is a convoluted way you could create something like this in a course, but I don’t know that I can recommend this as a way you should go. One option you might try is using a Microsoft Form to create a quiz with branching.

How can I download all my course files?

I am pleasantly surprised that this is possible for you (and students if they have access to the Files area.)

How do I give a student extra time on a quiz?

This is possible using quiz moderation.

Can I set different due dates for different groups of students within a course?

This is possible. One thing this solution references is sections. Because of the way we are syncing enrollments, faculty are prohibited from creating/managing sections. If using groups does not work for you please contact me and we will investigate how to get this working for you.