LMS Champ, Marcus Porcaro using the Canvas Teacher App.
In Semester 1 of 2018, Viny Sohi was able to do all his marking from an iPad, taking him half the time it took him to do it in Blackboard, thanks to the Canvas Teacher App.
Viny teaches five different courses as part of the flight training program, from the College of Science, Engineering and Health. “The benefit in Canvas, I saw, was the Canvas Teacher App. Which allowed me to give very constructive, personalised feedback to students individually” said Viny. He tried giving personalised feedback when using Blackboard, but it was a very messy process.
In Blackboard, a student would submit online through Turnitin and Viny would open the assessment using Microsoft Word on his iPad to start making annotations. He would also have a print out of rubrics so he can mark it separately with a pen and then go back to Turnitin to provide audio feedback. From here he would add the grades into the Grade Centre and finally send off an email to notify the students that the assessment has been marked.
Bouncing back and forth was a bit of a hassle for him, but when he started using the Canvas Teacher App he found that all of these functions were built into the one screen in the one place.
In Canvas, Viny can make annotations with the iPencil while displaying the rubric on the right-hand side and provide various forms of feedback including audio, video or written. When he has completed grading, the students will receive a notification to tell them that their mark has been released. On top of this, it also took away the need for paperwork.
Viny has found that feedback can come across a bit negatively at times when, for example, a student sees his annotations written in red pen. He said that audio feedback is a great way to ensure he gets the right tone across when summarising the results. Audio feedback offers a more personal approach when you want to pinpoint the areas where a student has done well, or not so well.
On a group level, you also have the ability to send out a general message to those with a High Distinction on an assignment to say ‘well done and keep it up’. For those who received lower marks, you can send a message that talks about the common problems people came across and then direct them to helpful resources.
You get notifications as a teacher for how many tasks are outstanding. And when you mark there is a live pie chart that tells you how many you’ve marked, how many completed and how many still haven’t been submitted. Viny doesn’t consider himself as much of a techy kind of guy, but he’s found the app to be a vast improvement over how he was marking in Blackboard.