Tip of the Day

One small tip or reminder every few days. Topics include anything having to do with teaching and learning in the current alternative instructional environment. We invite ideas, tips and suggestions from the community. Please comment on posts or email elsie@umn.edu. Click on any of the images in the blog posts to enlarge them.

Monday, November 9, 2020

Giving Feedback in Canvas Using Audio or Video

In our online teaching environment this year, most student work is submitted via Canvas, our Learning Management System.  When creating an assignment in Canvas, instructors can choose a variety of settings, such as awarding points, marking complete or incomplete, including a rubric, including the assignment in a weighted category, or excluding the assignments from the course grade calculation.  Regardless of what kind of grade you assign to a student submission, you may want to provide additional feedback.  In Canvas, you can do this in multiple ways:  1) typed online text; 2) uploaded text or image files; 3) speech to text comments; 4) audio only comments; and 5) video comments.  All of these methods can be accessed by the instructor in the Speedgrader.  

You are likely familiar with leaving written comments in Speedgrader, whether it is a short "Good Job!" or a longer narrative.  This is quick and easy.  Leaving audio feedback, however, is ALSO quick and easy, and has several benefits:

  • You can model pronunciation or intonation of spoken language
  • Through your voice, you can convey a supportive attitude or laugh with your students
  • Your feedback feels more personable and direct
  • You give your hands and wrist a break by using your voice and break up the repetitive nature of grading assignments

How to record audio or video feedback in the speedgrader

1. Click on the insert audio/video icon


2. You will now see the audio / video interface.  You have the option of uploading a file recorded elsewhere, but in most cases, you will record it now.

3. Decide whether you want to leave audio feedback or video feedback.  For audio only, click NO VIDEO.  To include your image, select the camera.     

4. Click START RECORDING.  The clock will countdown 3-2-1, and then you start talking!  When you are done, click FINISH.

5. At this point, you can preview your recording and save it, or start over.

6. Once you click on SAVE, the comment is automatically submitted. You do not need to click the Submit button again, unless you want to add another type of feedback.


How do students see my feedback?

When we take time to provide our students with feedback - in any form - we want them to pay attention to it.  At a minimum, we want them to see or hear it; ideally, they will reflect on it and plan how to incorporate it in their subsequent work.  You should know, however, that students do not automatically see or hear the feedback we provide through Canvas.  It is up to them to click on the icon that will reveal the feedback!!!  NO written comments nor any other kind of feedback appears directly on the grades page in student view.  So how do students see or hear our feedback?

   1. Students click on Grades in the Canvas navigation.

2. Then they see a list of assignments, with the due date, status, points earned, points possible, and possibly, a feedback icon.

3. After students click on the Feedback Icon, they will see any written or recorded comments from the instructor.

4.  Students can also access your feedback by clicking on the title of the assignment.  This will lead them to their original submission that looks like what the instructor sees in the Speedgrader.

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