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Los Rios currently utilizes Canvas as its learning management system (LMS). Faculty are not required to make LMS course requests for Canvas; all courses should already be created and available at:

Canvas is available to support fully online classes, hybrid (partially online classes), and web enhanced classes. Training on Canvas is offered regularly via scheduled workshops and other instructional development opportunities. Technical support is available to faculty and students through the Los Rios Online Help Desk.

Los Rios Canvas


Los Rios Online Help Desk
Phone: (916) 568-3012 (local) or (855) 321-3232 (toll-free)
Hours: Monday through Friday, 7:00 am to 6:00 pm

Zack Dowell
Coordinator, Instructional Design & Development
Phone: (916) 608-6605
Office: Innovation Center (Aspen Hall FL1-130)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I request Canvas courses?

Course requests are no longer required. Your courses for the upcoming term should be available shortly after the online schedule is published, and you can access them here. When you log in (using your standard Los Rios credentials), you’ll see one course account for each of your courses. You’ll probably want to select the ones you’re most interested in seeing in the Dashboard. To do this, click on the star next to the courses you want to see in the Dashboard. You can always access other ones by clicking Courses and then, All Courses.

How do I combine courses in Canvas?

  1. The whole “multi” business from the D2L days is all DIY in Canvas. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to combine course sections.
  2. Cross-listed classes (as defined by Los Rios) will be automatically grouped together within a single Canvas course.
  3. Separate Canvas courses will be created for each lab and lecture section. Students will be enrolled in the lab class *and* the associated lecture class. You can combine these (or not) as you see fit. If you teach both the lecture and the lab, and the students are the same in both, you’ll end up with a course account for each anyhow. The simplest way to deal with that situation is to simply ignore the lab section and publish the lecture section.
  4. You won’t be able to make any changes to multiple-enrollment courses once enrollment has started (see below), so think carefully about how you want to combine courses.
  5. Be really careful and thoughtful when you combine courses. It’s difficult (but not impossible, though requiring intervention from DO IT) to untangle all that once they’re combined.

How are students enrolled in Canvas courses?

  1. Seven days before the semester begins, student enrollments will be pushed to Canvas in all courses for that semester (including late-term classes).
  2. As students add and drop classes those changes will be reflected in Canvas.
  3. Once enrollment in Canvas begins, you won’t be able to use Canvas’s internal cross-listing tool (Refer to: How do I combine courses in Canvas?).
  4. Until you publish your courses, students won’t be able to see them.

How can I learn Canvas?

  1. Consider enrolling in this self-paced “Introduction to Teaching” with Canvas
  2. Study the Canvas Instructor Guide
  3. Attend a Canvas workshop during Flex

How can I help students be successful?

  1. Spend some time in class (use the Test Student user) showing students how to navigate your Canvas course.
  2. The Canvas Student Guide is excellent and continuously updated.
  3. Point them to the Help button on the left-hand navigation, which contains links and resources to help them.

How do I publish my Canvas courses so that students can access them?

From within your course, click Home (on the left) and then Publish (on the right).

Canvas publishing information

How do I copy Canvas content from one semester to the next?

Go to Settings, Import Course Content, and from Content Type (drop down) choose Copy a Canvas Course, then Select a course, Content (choose All content or Select specific content), then click Import.

How do I get answers to common Canvas questions?

Google. Honestly, there are so many Canvas users, and so much information available that there’s no reason to wait on the phone for the Help Desk, or to wait for an email response from me. Just type your question into Google and you’ll probably have an answer instantly.