Requesting a Canvas Site for an Instructor

The steps TAs and staff use to request Canvas sites for instructors are slightly different from those instructors follow.

To start, a TA or staff member should log into the Course Request Form with their PennKey username and password. Then, proxy as the instructor by clicking on the user icon at the top-center of the page in the Proxy Box.

Screenshot of the Request on Behalf of a User feature in the Course Request Form. Click the user icon with a + icon to proxy as another user.
Screenshot of the Request on Behalf of a User feature in the Course Request Form. Enter the user's PennKey in the text box field and click Submit.

Next, the TA or staff enters the instructor’s PennKey into the search bar and then clicks on Submit.

Screenshot of the Request on Behalf of a User feature in the Course Request Form highlighting the error message for an invalid PennKey. The error message reads: "Invalid PennKey -- PennKey must be UPenn Employee".

If there was a typo or if the PennKey isn’t associated with a Upenn employee you will receive this error.

If this happens, please check to see if any of these errors have caused the issue, and email Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu if you cannot determine the cause so we may assist you.

If the PennKey is valid, then the background color of the Proxy box will change to orange. The TA or Staff can verify that they are viewing the Form as the instructor by checking the “Requesting as . . .” information that appears in the box. They can also confirm the identity of the proxy by checking the Contact Info displayed on the homepage. When you are finished, you can stop proxying by clicking the icon in the Proxy Box.

Screenshot of ending the proxy feature in the Course Request Form. Click on the user icon with an X to end proxying.

Once proxying has begun, the page will refresh. If you navigate to the homepage, the homepage will display any sites the instructor has requested, as well as their existing course sites. The courses for which you can request Canvas sites will be listed in the Courses section of the homepage.  To request a Canvas site, click on a course’s section number under Courses or click See more to access a full list of the instructor’s courses.

Please click on the screenshot to enlarge.

Screenshot of a search for courses in the Course Request Form. Click on the course's section number to see more information.

On the next screen, you can specify whether you would like to copy content from an old Canvas course site to the new Canvas site. You also can change the course title as it displays in Canvas, request to have sections broken out in the site (if any have been established for the course), request course reserves, add additional users, and provide additional instructions.

Please click on the screenshot to enlarge.

Screenshot highlighting additional options available in the Course Request Form. Available options include copy content from an old Canvas course, change the title, add course sections, request course reserves, add additional users, and provide additional instructions. See the written instructions for more information.

At this point, you can choose Submit Request if you would like to submit your request to be processed. The Courseware Support Team monitors the CRF during normal business hours and usually processes a request within a few hours.

DIRECTIONS (1) – SETTING A CONTENT COPY

Since you are proxying as a different user, you will be able to select from their old Canvas sites. To copy content from a previous Canvas site click Select Copy and filter by Course title in the pop-up window. Once you have selected your desired Content Copy, click Add Source and check that the field populates with a 7 digit number (ex: 1234567).

Directions (2) – Selecting Additional Sections

If additional sections of the course are being offered you can include them in your request so that your Canvas site will contain multiple sections. To add a section to your request, toggle the desired sections available. Sections that are already included in a Canvas site will be greyed-out and cannot be added to any requests. For more information about using multi-section Canvas sites please refer to Using Sections in Canvas.

Screenshot of "Multi-Section Course Sites" section in the Course Request Form. Additional sections can be selected using radio buttons in the "Select" column.

Additional Options

  • Course Reserves: Course Reserve services from Penn Libraries are available to your course. Select Reserves to add the Course Materials @ Penn Libraries tab to your course. For more information about the Libraries’ Course Reserve service, please see Course Reserves at Penn Libraries.
  • Add Additional Users: You can add other users to a course in the Add Additional Users section of the Course Request Form. To add other users to a Canvas site, enter their PennKey and select a role from the dropdown menu. If you receive an error when trying to add an enrollment, try to proxy as the user in the box at the top of the page to ensure they are a user in the CRF.

Basic Request

If you know that you would like to submit a request with only content copied over or no additional specifications (as shown above), you can submit a Basic Request by clicking the Request Button and filling out the pop-up window as desired.

Screenshot of a search for courses in the Course Request Form. The status of courses in the form are listed as "Request" (Available) or "Requested" (Unavailable).
Screenshot of a Basic Request in the Course Request Form highlighting the "Copy from a Canvas Site" section.
  • (optional) Specify the Canvas site ID (ex: 1234567) you would like to copy content from in the Copy From Canvas Site field.
  • Click Submit Request to submit the request.
  • If you decide that you would like to specify additional customizations, click Custom Request to be taken to the full form as defined above. 

Editing your Request

If you have accidentally submitted a request with incorrect information you can go back and edit the submitted request form. Click on Requests under Main in the Navigation and you will be directed to a table of all submitted requests where you can find your request. Alternatively, you can navigate to the home page and go to the Site Requests section.

Once on the request’s page, click Edit Request at the bottom, make your desired changes and then be sure to click Update Request to save your changes. If your request has already been processed and has the status of ‘COMPLETED’ please contact canvas@pobox.upenn.edu so we can help modify the Canvas site.

What to Do If You Don’t See the Instructor’s Course in the Course Request Form

If an instructor is new to Penn, or if they were assigned to teach a course near the start of the semester, you might not see their course(s) listed in the Course Request Form when you proxy for them. When this happens, please email the following information to canvas@pobox.upenn.edu:

  • The instructor’s PennKey username (NOT their password), email address, and full name.
  • The full name and course ID for the site for each course that needs a Canvas site (e.g., Intro. to History, HIST 101-001 2015C).
  • Does the instructor want content copied into the new Canvas site from another Canvas site? If so, please give the full name and course ID of the site from which they want content copied (e.g., Intro. to History, HIST 101-001 2014C). If you are requesting to have content copied from another instructor’s site, they will need to contact Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu to give their permission for this copy before we can proceed; if you have been granted this permission beforehand, then please let us know.
  • Does the instructor want our Course Reserve department to have access to this site? For more information about the Libraries’ Course Reserve service, please see Course Reserves at Penn Libraries.
  • Does the instructor want to have follow-up contact from a Library liaison?

Questions?

Please email Courseware Support at canvas@pobox.upenn.edu if you have any questions.