Providing Rich Feedback in Canvas

Feedback is one of the most powerful influencers that enhances student achievement (Hattie, 1999). Yet, be aware, feedback is not simply a letter grade or percentage. A simple label as “Good job” does not provide students with opportunities to further learning. Feedback must be rich by providing students with information about his/ her performance related to the goal of the assignment. Rich feedback provides students with the opportunity to self-reflect for improvement. Self-reflection guides students in deriving ideas on how to meet a goal with the provided feedback from the instructor. Self-reflection can be as simple as posing a question, such as “Your paragraph seems more like an opinion. Do you feel that adding data would support your stand?”

Canvas gradebook provides an efficient way for instructors to provide rich feedback to students by sending an automated notification to students who meet a certain criteria. In Grades, click the ellipsis next to the assignment. 

Callout box displays when three dots are clicked beside the assignment. red circle around Message Students Who

Criteria options include students who

  • Haven’t been graded
  • Scored less than (points / percentage)
  • Scored more than (points / percentage)
message area contains the words, "Do you feel that the use of data could help support your stand?"

To further a student’s learning, ensure that a prompt for self-reflection is provided in the Message area. 

  • For students who have scored less than a score/ percentage, use a message to summarize criteria needed to meet instructor expectations on an assignment. 
  • For students who have scored higher than a score/ percentage, use a message to affirm a continuance in effort to meet instructor expectations. 
  • For students who haven’t submitted, use a message as a reminder.  

As an instructor, conduct your own self-reflection. To get started, consider this prompt, “What could I do to help students who are having difficulty with meeting instructor expectations on an assignment?”

Happy teaching and continue learning.

Hattie, J. (1999). Influences on Student Learning. Retrieved from