Canvas Student Annotation Submissions

Great news for teachers looking for a way to create annotated assignments. As of May 15, Canvas has a new annotated assignments option now available under online submission types.

What does this mean?

When creating a new assignment, the teacher can select “Online” and a new check box will be available for “Student Annotation.” Teachers will then access their course files, with the option to upload a file, which will then create a version for each student to annotate. This will now work with PDF documents! Yes, finally, an easy way to give our students PDF.

Teacher will select the Online submission Type and include Student Annotations as an option. Additional options can still be selected.

A copy of the document is created for each student and they will use DocViewer to complete the assignment with the available annotation tools (the same one you use to view your student’s work in Speedgrader). Since this is an online assignment type, teachers may also choose to include other submission types.

The DocViewer tools will be available for student annotations, text comments, highlighting, and more.

Some other notable features when using the student annotation option include:

  • Peer reviews are supported (anonymous peer reviews are not)
  • Student annotations will be viewable in Speedgrader
  • Student annotations cannot be assigned for group assignments
  • It is not supported in mobile devices, students will need to complete this from a computer or teachers should also include a downloadable version of the file for File Upload submission type.
  • If a student views a previously submitted attempt, it will show the annotations in a read-only format and additional annotations are not allowed (students will need to resubmit in order to modify their annotations)

For more on Canvas, check out our past posts. Please contact your Ed Tech Lead or Ed Tech TOSA for additional support.

  1. This is such exciting news and your writeup is really helpful Stephanie!! As an LA teacher I am hype!



    1. Stephanie Olson May 20, 2021 at 12:18 pm

      Thank you, Courtney!



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