Why Canvas?

As many of you know, several years ago, shortly after we made the move from Blackboard to ANGEL, Blackboard bought out the company who owned the ANGEL LMS.  Since that time, Blackboard decided that in 2014 ANGEL would no longer be a product they continue to develop.

With this information in mind, coupled with the fact that our existing contract with ANGEL will expire at the end of 2014, NNU had to make a difficult decision as to what new Learning Management System would best fit the needs of the campus community.

After a thorough research process that included many of the top-name Learning Management Systems available, it was decided that Canvas by Instructure would be the best solution.

Here are some really great features Canvas offers that we are looking forward to taking advantage of:

  • A clean, uncluttered look
  • Students and faculty have nearly the same user experience
  • Canvas connects with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Docs, email, and even text messages
  • The SpeedGrader in Canvas allows instructors to dynamically grade student assignments directly from the system without having to download submissions
  • The modules feature in Canvas allows instructors to have more control over how their students interact with course information
  • As part of our contract with Canvas we will now have 24/7 help support

Canvas has won acclaim from many universities around the country.  It is very intuitive and dynamic and we are excited about how this new tool will enhance learning here at NNU!

Canvas Training

We offer several live trainings on Canvas for faculty and staff and an online Canvas training for students.  If you are faculty or staff, please check out our Schedule of Learning Opportunities to search for upcoming training sessions.

We also have several recorded trainings which are available upon request.

Creating your Canvas Course Space

Here are some considerations to keep in mind before you put any information into your new Canvas course:

  • Course size
    • It's important only to bring what you need into your Canvas course.  ANGEL duplicates many of your course files for several reasons.  It's vital that you look at your course files in ANGEL and clean them up before bringing them into Canvas.
  • Copyright
    • Copyright in a digital classroom is very different than a face-to-face classroom.  Be sure you clearly understand copyright laws for the digital classroom.  If you have questions, you can refer to this great libguide  provided by NNU's Riley library.
  • Accessibility
    • It's important when creating content in your digital classroom that you take into consideration those individuals who may have hearing and/or visual impairments.  Be sure to create your course content in such a way that is compliant with disability regulations and makes appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities.

Access to ANGEL

Access to ANGEL will be suspended on December 15th, 2014.  At that time, we will no longer have permissions to log into the ANGEL LMS.  Instructors should export all pertinent course materials out of ANGEL on or before December 15th, 2014, at which time our I.T. department will begin extracting course files onto a backup server to be archived (similar to our old Blackboard course files).

Please note: during the back-up process we will NOT be able to retrieve any course information.  There will be a total blackout period between December 16th - December 24th, 2014, where we will have no access to ANGEL course content.  After December 24th, should you need access to archived ANGEL course information, you may submit a request via

Requesting ANGEL Archives

Requests for archived ANGEL course content (content only, not gradebooks or activity logs) should be submitted via  Please be aware that extracting archives may take several days, so it's best to plan ahead.

All instructors are encouraged to download a .zip file of their ANGEL course on or before December 15th, 2014.  There will be total blackout period between December 16th - 24th, 2014.  Requests for archived content may resume after December 24th, 2014.