Welcome to Canvas at WNMU

What is Canvas?

How can Canvas assist in my teaching?

You can log into Canvas at https://wnmu.instructure.com.

Use your Mustang Express username and W-number as your first time password. (find your W#)

Whenever you login to Canvas you will land on what is called the dashboard where you will see global navigation, the Sidebar with various types of feeds, and the Global Activity Stream, which comprises the main body of the page. (Want to Learn More?)

On the occasion of your first login it is a good idea to go to your profile page and change your login password. (Want to Learn More?)

You can edit your profile page by clicking on the Profile link in the upper-right corner of the Canvas interface. (Want to Learn More?)


Find Your W#


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What is Canvas?


Canvas is an online platform (called a learning management system)  that allows teachers to build and maintain a secure web space in which they can share course content, communicate with their students, provide online learning activities and assessments, and keep track of their students progress. All WNMU students and faculty have access to Canvas and can go through https://wnmu.instructure.com to login using their Mustang Express username and W#.

Canvas is developed and supported by a Salt Lake based company called Instructure. It is available as either an open-source product (freely available to download, host, and modify) or as a licensed product with some additional enterprise features and premium support.

Canvas is the first major commercial learning management system for higher education designed as a cloud application. It is also one of the only commercial open source systems on the market and one of the first to implement open standards for integrating third party tools and content. It is licensed across the country by higher education institutions ranging in size, including schools like Brown and Auburn. It is also growing in popularity among K-12 institutions and corporate entities.


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How can using Canvas assist in my teaching?

How can using Canvas assist in my teaching?


Canvas can help you improve the learning experience of your students in many ways. For example:



How do I edit my Profile?


Access your Profile page


Click on the Profile link in the upper right-hand corner.


Edit Profile


Click Edit Profile in the Sidebar.


Click on the dotted square to upload a Profile picture [1]. Change your Full Name and your Display Name [2]. Set the user interface to work in a different language [3]. Change your time zone [4]. Subscribe to the Instructure mailing list [5]. And change your password [6]


Update Profile


Click Update Profile in the middle of the page to save your changes.


Open notification channels


In the upper right-hand corner of your Profile, you can add additional email addresses and SMS numbers. Once opened, Canvas can use these channels to notify you of invitations to Conferences and Collaborations.


Add Email Address


You can add as many different email addresses as you like. You can also choose to log in with a different email address than the one you were invited with. If you click on Text (SMS) and type in your phone number, you will be prompted to confirm your SMS Number with a four-character code.


Confirm SMS Number


Type in the four-character confirmation code and click Confirm.




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How do I change my login password?



Edit Profile


To edit your login password, click Edit Profile located on the right side of the Profile Page.


Change Your Password


To view the password options, check the box labeled 'Change Password. You should now see the password fields appear. First type in your old password followed by your new password twice. When you're finished making changes, Update Profile to save the settings.

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How do I use the Dashboard?



The Canvas Dashboard is comprised of three elements


The Dashboard consists of three main elements:

  1. Global Navigation across the top of the page,

  2. the Sidebar with various types of feeds, and

  3. the Global Activity Stream, which comprises the main body of the page.

The Dashboard is designed to answer the questions, "What is going on in all of my courses?" and "What do I need to do next?"


1 - Global Navigation


The Global Navigation directs users to menus or pages that display:

  1. all of a user's courses and groups,

  2. all of a user's assignments,

  3. a grade summary page, and

  4. the Calendar.

These four menus and pages will display different items depending on whether you are a student or an instructor. Under Assignments, for example, Instructors will see assignments that need to be graded and students will see assignments that need to be turned in.


2 - Sidebar


The Sidebar contains three helpful feeds.

  1. The "To Do" feed lists the next five assignments you need to turn in (if you are a student) or you need to grade (if you are an instructor). Assignments will still show up in this list even if they are past due. Click on the links to go directly to the Assignments page.

  2. The "Coming Up" feed lists the next five assignments or events coming due in the next week.

  3. The "Recent Feedback" feed lets students know when their instructor has left a comment or a grade for one of their submissions. The same feed will let instructors know when students have left comments about work they have evaluated. This feed helps students and instructors keep the conversation alive around Assignments.


3 - Global Activity Stream



The Global Activity Stream contains a stream of recent activity from all of your courses. There are announcements, calendar events, discussion postings, due dates, and grade updates. This activity stream helps students and teachers to stay on top of what is going on in the course and allows them to easily ask questions and post to discussion forums. Users can quickly comment on recent discussions without having to enter a specific course. 

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