Information about Canvas for Faculty

Canvas is here at El Camino College!


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OEI: Canvas Course Migration Tools

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Subject: Canvas Transitions



Vice President – Academic Affairs

Dear Faculty,

We wanted to take a minute to update you on the progress being made with the Canvas migration as we work toward replacing Etudes.  Many faculty members using Canvas report the shells are very easy to use and the system is quite user friendly.  There is one catch, there is no direct pathway between Canvas and our data system, Colleague.  As a result, the roster and gradebook must be manually updated by a staff member on campus, Gema Perez.  This is incredibly time consuming and limits the number of shells that can be used effectively for classes during the semester.  The good news is that there will be an integration tool that connects Colleague and Canvas.  The bad news is it won’t be ready until July for beta testing.  Our ITS Director, Art Leible, has been pushing Instructure (parent company for Canvas), but July is the best answer he can get.

As a result, the number of Canvas shells available for online courses for the fall is limited.  No shells will be available for face-to-face classes until the integration tool is working.  I know everyone is anxious to use Canvas, but please be patient. This is not in our control.  I will ask ITS to send an update when the tool is ready.

On a related note, last week the Academic Senate passed a resolution in support of allowing all faculty members to have a Canvas shell for face-to-face classes without having to take the Canvas certification classes.  The history is that when we started using Etudes, the company required certification of training. That was 15 years ago and everyone has progressed since that time.  As soon as the integration tool is available, those shells can be available to all faculty.  To place your name on the waiting list for Canvas shells for face-to-face classes:  Requests will be filled in the order received.  Training on Canvas will still be available, and advised for anyone who has never used a learning management system, but it won’t be required for face-to-face classes.  Please remember, however, that our staff will not be available to give personal lessons and will advise people without training or experience to take the Canvas trainings.  Note that requirements to be eligible to teach fully online and hybrid classes remain unchanged: faculty must complete the Online Teaching Certification and be Canvas certified.  More information about these requirements can be found here.

Have a great summer and we hope to have good Canvas news in July.

Relevant resources that may be helpful include:

ECC Distance Education Faculty Site

ECC Professional Development, including Etudes-to-Canvas and Intro to Canvas courses.

@One, California Community College training including an Introduction to Teaching with Canvas which is free if you use the code:  OEIfree4U.

Canvas Faculty/Teacher Guides:

Jean Shankweiler: Vice President, Academic Affairs

Kristie Daniel-GiGregorio: President, Academic Senate

El Camino College

(310) 660-3119


Subject: Canvas Course Management System



Vice President – Academic Affairs

Dear Campus,

The California Community College Chancellor’s Office has supported an Open Educational Resources Initiative. This initiative provides community colleges across the state with a common course management system, Canvas, as part of the initiative, along with access to online materials and courses for community college students.  In response to interest and inquiries from across campus, a task force from the Academic Senate was formed, and held open forums to investigate.  In spring 2016, the Academic Senate supported a proposal from the task force to move from using Etudes as the campus Course Management System to the use of Canvas.  This recommendation came after a thorough analysis of the pros and cons of the change.  The initiatives from the Chancellor’s Office, impact on faculty, and benefits to students were all considered by the committee.  The Distance Education Advisory Committee supported this proposal, as did Cabinet.  The consultation process on this recommendation culminated with the Senate proposal being presented to the Board of Trustees in August as an information item.

During the summer, the Etudes to Canvas Migration Team, composed of faculty, staff and administrators closely involved in distance education, developed a tentative timeline for the migration.  This information will be discussed by your deans on Professional Development Day, but I wanted to provide an update on developments to date.

The fall 2016 semester will be devoted to completing our contract with Canvas and implementing the new system, training programs for faculty and other tasks to ensure a smooth migration.  We would like a small cohort of online faculty to use Canvas in winter session, with Canvas being available in online and traditional courses for the spring 2017 semester.  Training on Canvas will be ongoing from this point on. Again, this is a tentative timeline.

Etudes will continue to be available for the 2016-17 academic year.  Currently, the plan is to continue to have Etudes available for faculty, with Canvas migration ongoing until June 2018.  At that time, Canvas will become the sole course management system for the college.

I would like to thank the Task Force and the Etudes to Canvas Migration committee.  Committee members include Howard Story, Pete Marcoux, Chris Gold, Rebecca Russell, Art Leible, Gloria Miranda, Lisa Mednick-Takami, Elena Azose, Daniel Berney, Linda Clowers, Dipte Patel, Celia Valdez, and Gema Perez.  If you have questions or want to participate, I am sure any of the committee members or I can help you.


Jean Shankweiler

Vice President, Academic Affairs

El Camino College

(310) 660-3119