How do I send an email to my students in CourseWorks (Canvas)?

There are two ways to send an email to your class - Using the 'Inbox' tool available in the global navigation bar OR using the 'Mail' tool in the course navigation bar. There are special considerations for each method, so make sure you read "Things to Note" carefully for both methods before making or implementing a choice.

Using the 'Inbox' tool in the global navigation bar:

Here's a step by step guide on how you can use the Inbox tool to send an email to class:

Things to note:

  • If you plan to use the Inbox tool, please keep in mind that the students by default receive a notification of your email in the UNI associated email. 
  • However, if they have changed their notification preferences, they may not be notified; instead, they will see your email in their Inbox when they log into CourseWorks (Canvas).

Using the 'Mail' tool in the course navigation bar:

If you do not see the Mail tool in your course navigation bar, you can enable it by:

  • Clicking on 'Settings' (at the bottom of your course navigation bar)
  • Click on 'Navigation' in the top menu
  • You will see the list of tools for your course site. If you scroll down to the bottom of the page, you will notice 'Mail tool' and a gear icon next to it. 
  • Click on the gear icon and click 'Enable'. And click on 'Save' at the bottom of the page.
  • If you refresh your page, you will notice that the Mail tool is now part of your course navigation bar. You can click on the Mail tool to send emails to your class participants.
Once you click on the 'Mail' tool, follow the steps below to compose a message:
  • Click Mailtool
  • Click Compose
  • In the “To” field, you will see "All," “Roles”. Selecting "All" will send the email to all course participants (including Instructors and TAs).
  • If you select "Roles" , these buttons enable dynamic dropdown lists of roles for your Course Site.
  • You can select all within a role by checking the box next to it. If you’d like to select individuals within a role, click on the word itself to enable a dynamic list of participants within that role.
  • Enter the content for your Subject and Message using the text editor 
  • Under "Attachments", you can attach a file from your local computer or from Resources, or specify the URL for a file on the web.
  • When you're finished, click Send to send your message
Things to note:
  • If you plan to use the Mail tool, please note that notification preferences do not affect the Mail tool. Your students will receive your email in their UNI associated email box. 
  • We recommend not sending out a broadcast email immediately after manually adding a participant in Canvas. The Mail tool is being pulled from the old CourseWorks. To ensure the tool works in mixed environments, CUIT syncs the rosters for CourseWorks (Canvas) with the old CourseWorks 5 times a day. Waiting for a few hours before sending out a class email after manually adding a participant will prevent participants from missing out on important communications.

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