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Canvas - How can students annotate an assignment in Canvas?

Students have been able to annotate through the Canvas Student app on their Android or iOS devices. A new Canvas feature has included the option for instructors to allow students to annotate on a computer.

Start by creating an assignment

  1. Add a title, description (there is no need to link the document as you'll add that later), and point value.  
  2. Once you get to the Submission Type, select Online Submission.
  3. Make sure to check the box Student Annotation. Consider selecting multiple submission types to accommodate students who may not be able to create annotations.


  4. After you select Student Annotation you will attach the file. You will have an option to attach from the Course Files, your personal files (My Files) or upload a document. 
  5. Finish setting up the assignment with the submission attempts, optional: plagiarism review, optional: peer review and availability/due dates. (Group assignments do not currently support student annotation assignments).
  6. Save.
When students Start Assignment, they will have the option to select how they will be completing the assignment including Student Annotation that they can complete in the page. Once they select Submit Assignment, they will not be able to edit the annotations. 


Instructor set-up for Canvas App Annotation only

  1. When the creating the assignment the PDF needs to be linked in the assignment directions.  


  2. The submission type also needs to be set up for online submissions including Files Uploads (for students that do not have the Canvas App to annotate). 


Student view (images examples from Android device)

  1. After you log into the Canvas Student App, locate the course and the assignment to annotate. 
  2. Find the PDF linked in the Description. 

  3. Select the link and it will open the mark up view. 
  4. Select the pencil icon (edit) to use the toolbar for adding text and drawings (see the Resource section for guides).

  5. After you are done, you can turn in the assignment (Android and iOS have different directions to submit, see Resources).

  6. Verify the assignment says Successfully submitted (may take a page refresh). 


Tips & Tricks

  • Make sure to verify your assignment has been submitted. 
  • The Android and iOS steps to submit are very different, make sure you are using the right documentation for your device. 
  • If your device will not submit the assignment, try re-installing the app. 
    • You can also save the annotation on your device and submit through the submit assignment button (Android guide; iOS guide). 
  • For more Canvas Student app guides, check out the full list of Android guides and iOS guides. 

24/7/365 Canvas Support is available through the help icon in Canvas, by calling the phone support for faculty, staff and students.

Keywords:android, iOS, assignment, submission, docviewer, annotation   Doc ID:109124
Owner:Stephanie S.Group:UW-La Crosse
Created:2021-02-18 09:57 CDTUpdated:2022-03-30 08:48 CDT
Sites:UW-La Crosse
Feedback:  1   0