UPDATE | Pronoun Changes in Canvas and Banner

Please note that the list of pronouns in the Banner user profile has been recently expanded to 15 unique choices. You can visit your MyDU page to make edits to your Banner profile at any time. At the start of the Spring Quarter, the pronoun choices in the Banner user profile will feed directly in the Canvas user profile within one business day after a change is made. Faculty and students will not be able to change their pronouns in Canvas after March 27th, 2023. If you would like to give feedback on the pronoun choices in Banner, please fill out this form.


Please visit DU’s COVID-19 website and subscribe to @uofdenver Twitter for updates regarding COVID-19.
Visit Messages From Leadership for the latest information from the Chancellor and DU Leadership.


University of Denver

Holiday Office Schedule

November 21st – 23rd | OTL office is remote, virtual appointments available 
November 24th – 25th | University is closed for Thanksgiving Break
December 19th – 23rd | OTL office is remote, virtual appointments available
December 26th – January 2nd | University is closed for Winter Break
January 3rd | OTL office is in person, virtual and in person appointments available

Key Events

December 5th | Teaching Online – Advanced Practice Short Course Launches
December 5th | Course Design Institute Self- Study Begins
December 7th | Designing for Significant Learning
December 8th – 9th | Winter SoTL Retreat
December 13th – 14th | Neurodiversity Institute


Link to Teaching Resources

Inclusive Teaching

Link to ITP Website


Link to Knowledge Base


Link to OTL Calendar

Contact Us

Link to Our Staff page


Link to Teaching Resources

Inclusive Teaching

Link to ITP Website


Link to Knowledge Base


Link to OTL Calendar

Contact Us

Link to OTL Staff Bookings

Events Calendar

Schedule 1:1 time with an OTL Instructional Designer.

Canvas Course Preparation Checklist

Canvas is now required for all DU courses, regardless of modality. Follow these 9 steps to easily update your course.

Step 1


To save time, consider importing course content from a previous quarter or downloading the OTL template, rather than designing from scratch.

Step 2


Email reserve@du.edu to request new reserves or reactivating previous reserves for physical and electronic materials.  

Step 3


Begin updating your syllabus, module organization, and home page for any changes. 

Step 4


Decide which technologies you will use in addition to Canvas, i.e. Zoom, Kaltura, Swank, or Perusal.  Ensure you have the most up-to-date versions downloaded. Faculty planning to use Zoom should upgrade on a quarterly basis.

Step 5


Add or update assessments such as quizzes and written assignments, update late-assignment and attendance policies in your syllabus, and double check that due dates and submission formats are accurate. 

Step 6


Check that your assignments show up accurately in the gradebook.  If applicable, setup and test weighted grading for the course.

Step 7


temporarily publish you course and utilize “student view” to see what students will in your course.  Check that all course links work, pages are formatted correctly, videos have closed caption and transcripts, and assignments are visible. 

Step 8


Review your course using our accessibility checklist for designing, building and teaching in Canvas.  The OTL is here to help support faculty and facilitate this process. 

Step 9


If you have any remaining questions or support needs, please contact the Office of Teaching and Learning. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, per DU’s COVID-19 Classroom Protocol, “Instructors are required to use Canvas to provide access to essential course materials, including syllabi and assignments.”

Fortunately, Canvas allows you to import content from a previous course into a new course. You can also use the Canvas templates the OTL has designed to help create your Canvas course containers.

See “How do I import content from a previous Canvas course to a new course shell?” and “How can I use a template to set up my Canvas course?” for further information

Visit time stamp 1:11 in this video to see just how easy it can be to import existing course content. 

This Canvas Community Guide provides step-by-step instructions.

The OTL has two official templates you can use to design your Canvas courses: The OTL Advanced Canvas Template and the OTL Basic Canvas Template. You can download either template from the Canvas Commons.

Okay, but which template should I use?

That’s a great question, and it depends on how you plan to incorporate Canvas into your teaching.  However, both templates will allow you to fulfill DU’s COVID-19 Classroom Protocol.

The OTL Advanced Canvas Template contains formats for the syllabus, a home page, weekly modules, assignments, discussions, and more. This template can be customized for either face-to-face (F2F) or online (synchronous and asynchronous) delivery. If you plan to use this template for a F2F course, you may not need as many of the template pages that are included.  

The OTL Canvas Basic Template also contains templates for the syllabus and home page but is more streamlined. For example, since F2F classes do not tend to use many asynchronous activities, this template focuses on keeping the course organized with the basics needed in a Canvas course, such as assignments and instructional materials.

Introducing the Basic and Advanced Canvas Template offers a comparison chart that explains in more detail the differences of both.

While there is no university-wide deadline for publishing your Canvas course, students appreciate being able to access course material in advance, especially the syllabus. Consider publishing your Canvas course 5-7 days before the start of the quarter.

Bear in mind that once you publish a course, you can keep individual pages, assignments, discussions, media, and even whole modules unpublished if you want to continue working on them before releasing them to students.

 We recommend using the built-in Kaltura Embed tools, which you can read about in this Knowledge Base article. These tools help avoid the risk of videos not having the right permissions once they are copied from one course container to another. 

 If you’re looking to move a set of playlists from one Canvas Media Gallery to another, check-out these helpful instructions. 

All video and audio files uploaded to Kaltura My Media within Canvas or DU MediaSpace will have an auto-generated closed caption file. As the video owner or editor, you can edit the auto-generated closed captions to improve accuracy. Captions should be 95%   accurate to meet ADA accessibility standards.

This OTL Knowledge Base article describes how to edit captions.    

For images: the database ArtSTOR provides access to 1.6 million images, and includes a variety of pedagogically engaging features. Check out the following resources to learn more about how (and why) to use ArtSTOR:

For other media: DU’s library has access to dozens of streaming media databases, including 45 databases for streaming video alone. Check out the following resources to learn more about how (and why) to use these databases:

New Quizzes are Canvas’s completely redesigned quiz feature. This blog gives an overview of the pedagogical benefits of New Quizzes. Visit our Knowledge Base for how-to articles about using New Quizzes.

You can still create Classic Quizzes as well.  This Knowledge Base article compares the features of Classic and New Quizzes.

To request textbooks and course materials, visit the Online Adoptions to Course Materials website.

As with publishing your Canvas course, there is no university-wide deadline for when you need to submit your textbook orders. However, for reasons of accessibility, equity, and fairness, we recommend you submit your orders to the bookstore as soon as possible.

 Email reserve@du.edu for either new reserves or reactivating previous reserves.

If you are reactivating previous reserves, please include the course number, code, and quarter in which your E-Reserves were last used, as well as the course number, code, and quarter for which you wish them to be reactivated.

Reserves can take up to three weeks to process, so get your requests in as soon as possible.

The Canvas gradebook will automatically synch with any Assignments in your course—this includes Discussions, Quizzes, and general Assignments. When creating any of these  in your course, be sure to carefully read the settings in the setup menu, as there are many options available.

You will need to choose due dates, submission formats, points or complete/incomplete, and number of allowed attempts. For more advanced Canvas users, you can also choose to embed a TurnItIn review, designate individual or group work, or implement peer reviews. To setup weighted grading in Canvas, utilize the steps in this helpful guide.

Recent Blog Posts

For a list of all blogs, please visit our OTL Blog page

person typing image

Keep Using Canvas!

By Lexi Schlosser, Faculty Developer of Online Learning   Utilizing Canvas as a tool for teaching enhances your teaching practices and the student’s learning experiences, saving

Read More »

Resources to Support
Inclusivity in the Classroom

Inclusive teaching practices require us to engage the wealth of intersecting social identities and positionalities that faculty and students bring to the classroom. Whether face-to-face or online, inclusion must not be an afterthought. Rather, it should permeate every aspect of curriculum and course design, classroom management, and assessment of teaching and learning.

Commonly Used Resources

Three young men look at a shared computer


Explore the Canvas Learning Management System Knowledge Base

A man facing an audience, leading a discussion

Courses & Opportunities

Discover our course offerings

A student listens with a calm expression on her face


Request an instructional consultation from our professionals

Contact us

Send us a note, and our staff will get back to you.  You can also schedule 1:1 time with an OTL Instructional Designer.