Canvas FAQs

Q.  How do I get into Canvas?

A: There are two ways to access Canvas:

  1. From MyMiami: There is a button on the MyMiami page for Canvas. Once you are logged in MyMiami, click on the Canvas button on the left side of the screen.
  2. From MU Canvas Login Portal: This is a login portal that is available for all Miamians, and also available for people who do not have an MU account, such as a guest student or a guest speaker who does not have a unique ID and password. To access the login page, type in the Then log into Canvas using your Miami ID and password, or non-Miami Canvas account credentials.

Q: How do I find my Canvas courses?

A: If it is your first time logging into Canvas, you may see a list of course invitations on the dashboard page. You need to "Accept" an invitation to your course. If you do not accept, you will not be able to access and edit your course. Once you accept the invitation, your course will appear in the "Courses" tab.

If you’ve accepted the courses in Canvas, or have accepted the course invitations from an email sent by Canvas, you can click on the “Courses” link on the side panel below the Miami Logo. A “short list” of courses will appear, to view all courses click on “All Courses” at the bottom of the list.  New courses added to your list will be found by clicking “All Courses” at the bottom of your course list.

Q: Can I request a Canvas site?

A: There are two different types of Canvas sites.  The first is for course delivery with student enrollments and is created in Canvas by the Registrar’s office.  The second is a project site. Projects sites can be utilized by departments, staff, and student organizations for the sharing of information, training on processes and procedures.  To request a project site complete the Request a Canvas Site form.

Q: How do my students get enrolled in my course?

A: Months before a term begins the Registrar’s office will automatically have a course shell in Canvas created and students enrolled.  You will find your roster on your MyMiami page just as you did before, but you will also see the roster in People in your course.

Q: What is a migration course on my course list?

A: A migration course shell is a Canvas course that was automatically migrated from your Niihka course.  If you have taught a course in Niihka in Summer and/or Fall 2014, and had a Resources folder in the Niihka course site, that Resources folder has been migrated into Canvas as a migration course shell.  You can locate migrated materials by selecting "Files" in the Canvas migration course shell.  If your Niihka course did not included materials in the Resources folder, you will not have a Canvas migration course shell for that particular course.

Q: How do I find out which course the migration course relates to?

A: Click on the course name to access the migration course, then click on the "Files” link in the left navigation list. You should be able to identify the migration course content from the Files - same files as what you had in your Niihka resources folder.

Q: Can I teach in my migration course shell?

A: No. You cannot teach in the migration course shell, because students will never be in there.  You can use the migration course shell as a sandbox to explore the numerous functionalities in Canvas, or collaborate with your colleagues and use it for course preparation.

Q: What is an active Canvas course?

A: Courses for upcoming terms will appear in your list with the course code and course number followed by a section (i.e. ABC 123 XB). These courses are in active terms and have student enrollment. Once you publish the course the course will be active and  the students will have access.

Q.  Are faculty currently required to use Canvas, or is there still an option between Canvas and Niihka?

A: Faculty can opt-in to using Canvas whenever they are ready. However, on May 17, 2016 Niihka will no longer available for student course work.  Canvas is the only active learning management system (LMS) currently active for student course work. It is recommended that you migrate your courses to Canvas as soon as possible so your course content will be available to you.

Q: What support is available for faculty using Canvas?

A: All faculty with questions about Canvas should first contact IT help desk at (513) 529-7900.  In addition, online support is available 24x7 in both Miami’s knowledge base and within Canvas itself.

Q: Who else is using Canvas (schools)?

A: Over 600 higher education institutions are using Canvas. These include Northwestern, Dartmouth, Brown, Auburn, University of Washington, and Utah State. Indiana University, University of California Berkeley, and University of Michigan are among schools currently phasing out Sakai and moving to Canvas.

Q: I've heard that Canvas is a “cloud” service and that means Miami academic records are being stored off site. How has security been addressed?

A: Canvas is secure. Canvas conducts regular internal audits and contracts independent security specialists to perform and publish an annual public security audit. IT Services followed their standard process for assessing the information security posture of a 3rd party company, and Canvas was judged to have an appropriate information security posture to protect the data that will be stored in that system.

Q: What are the benefits of using the Canvas Learning Management System?

A: Ease of use by faculty and students was the primary factor that led to the choice of Canvas. Canvas is designed specifically for teaching and learning online, and by meeting the rigorous demands of the online course. It also provides robust tools for face-to-face courses. Canvas’ open API and 1-click LTI integration make adding tools easy. A wide variety of tools and content sources is available to integrate with Canvas and the list is growing. Significant features include integrated learning outcomes, native course and grading apps, video recording, and native mobile polling.

Learn more about how you can use Canvas features and tools by searching the Canvas Guides.

Atomic Learning resources are available in the IT Help knowledge base or log in with your Miami credentials at