June 26-28, 2024
Long Beach, CA

Outcomes Assessment with an Ungraded Canvas Assignment

Effective Practices

Presented by:

  • Gregory Beyrer,¬†Professor, Cosumnes River College
  • Paul Meinz,¬†Researcher and IT Analyst, Cosumnes River College

Speaker Bios:

  • Gregory Beyrer is a distance education coordinator at Cosumnes River College and has been teaching in a technology-mediated environment since the days of HyperCard. He helps fellow faculty use technology effectively and teaches classes in history and online student success. Greg was Instructure’s Canvas Educator of the Year for 2019 and a founding member of the Online Education Initiative Steering Committee. His history degrees include a C.Phil. from UCLA, an M.A. from San Jos√© State University, and a B.A. from Cal. He also has a B.A. in ethnic studies from Cal.
  • Paul Meinz is a researcher and IT professional at Cosumnes River College. He has a combined 13 years of research experience – first as a developmental psychologist and then as an educational researcher. He works closely with administrators, faculty, and classified professionals to provide research that guides decision making and highlights the importance of student equity work. He also combines a wide range of technical skills to produce dashboards, conduct statistical analyses, develop data pipelines, and manage databases. Paul earned his Ph.D. in psychology at Western University, Canada, with an M.A. in Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley.

Session Info:

Measuring the achievement of student learning outcomes in Canvas is challenging from the perspectives of recording and reporting. Recording requires that outcomes have been added to a course and that the instructor understands the relationship between those outcomes and the course’s assignments. One way to connect grading and measuring outcome achievement is to add outcome-based criteria to the rubrics for various assignments. But this requires that instructors carefully consider how an outcome-based rubric criterion affects each assignment’s score. If it does not, students will reasonably wonder why something that is being used to assess them has no connection to their assignment score or class grade. Another option is to create a standalone assignment that neither counts toward the course grade nor requires students submit any work. Each course outcome can be a criterion for this assignment. Recording outcome achievement is then as efficient as grading a single assignment, with the measurement of class-wide outcome achievement appearing in the Learning Mastery Gradebook. If assignments are grouped by outcome, scores for an assignment group will show whether each student has achieved that group’s associated outcome. This system can also make reporting class-wide outcome achievement more efficient than processing a bunch of downloaded course outcome reports.

With access to the Canvas database, a college’s research team can pull those reports directly from Canvas. This allows detailed analysis of outcome achievement, especially if that analysis is informed by a connection with the college’s student information system. In this session you see this system demonstrated and learn how to create an assignment to document achievement for each of your course’s student learning outcomes. You will also see how these data can exported and used by your college research team.

Session Outcomes:

  • Use the Learning Mastery Gradebook and an ungraded, no-submission assignment to document student achievement of course learning outcomes.
  • Understand how access to Canvas data supports effective reporting of course-level Outcomes reporting.

Session Resources:


View the Recorded Session

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