Canvas Production Release Notes: May 15, 2021

Desktop computer with a bullhorn icon on the screen.

Canvas operates on a monthly release cycle through which features are added or updated. Courseware Support posts highlights from Canvas’s production release notes, a link to these notes, and other relevant content to the Canvas at Penn a few days before the production release, which usually occurs on Saturdays. Please contact Courseware Support at if you have any questions about an upcoming production release.

May 15, 2021 Production Release Highlights

  • Student Annotation Submissions: Instructors can use an annotated assignment type to upload a file for students to annotate and submit directly in Canvas. Previously students had to take a photo of the document or use a third-party tool to complete the submission.
  • Course Templates: A course ID can be designated as a course template for all new courses created in an account. This functionality is supported for both manually created courses and SIS import. Please note, this feature differs from Blueprint Courses as a course template cannot be associated with other courses or managed by another course.
  • Save and Build Button Workflow: The New Quiz creation page includes both a Save button and a Build button. The Save button saves the content in the existing page and returns the user to the area where the quiz was accessed. The Build button saves the existing page and launches the New Quiz editor. Previously the page only included the Save button, which counterintuitively launched the New Quiz editor.
  • Auto-Show Closed Captioning: Users can enable captions to show by default for all Canvas videos without having to manually enable captions for each individual video. Users can access the User Settings page to enable the Auto-Show Closed Captioning feature. This functionality is supported for captions added to recorded Canvas videos or uploaded videos in a course.
  • Maintenance Windows: To better manage required maintenance across all customer instances, regular maintenance windows will be implemented for each region, beginning in July 2021. Most maintenance windows will take place sometime between the hours of 12:00 am and 4:00 am local time on the 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month.

For a complete production release update, please see:

Canvas Production Release Notes: May 15, 2021 

May 15, 2021 Canvas Production Release Screencast

New Feature Screencast (2021-05-15) from Instructure Canvas Community on Vimeo.

Last Updated: 20 Oct 2021

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