External Tools Overview
External Tools (also known as “applications,” “apps,” and/or “LTIs”) are developed by third party vendors to integrate with the Canvas LMS. These tools must be vetted and approved to be supported by system administration. Certain external tools may not be supported due to security or functionality concerns.
WashU provides access to many educational technology tools that have the potential to increase student engagement, foster deeper connections to content, and save you time on teaching and learning tasks.
Atomic Search Pilot
Atomic Search is a comprehensive search tool that allows instructors and students to search for content in Canvas courses. Students and instructors can now easily search their Canvas content in a user-friendly and accessible way. They will save time finding the information they need in a course site without spending time searching through all of the content.
Based on student feedback for consistency in Canvas, we are thrilled to announce a new addition to our Canvas platform that will enhance your learning and teaching experience. Starting in the Spring 2024 semester, we are introducing the Atomic Search tool, designed to simplify content discovery for both instructors and students. This tool will transform the way you navigate and access course materials within Canvas.
Key Benefits of Atomic Search:
● Effortless Content Discovery: With Atomic Search, you can now quickly and easily locate course materials, streamlining your Canvas experience.
● No Setup Required: Atomic Search integrates seamlessly within Canvas without the need for any adjustments.
● Accessible Everywhere: The Atomic Search tool is conveniently accessible from any page within Canvas. Look for the "Search" icon at the top of every page. In courses, you'll also find a "Search" link in the navigation menus.
What Atomic Search Offers:
● Time Savings: Atomic Search empowers both students and faculty to access their learning content more efficiently, saving valuable time.
● Comprehensive Search: Enjoy the convenience of full-text search capabilities across all types of course content, including files, pages, assignments, quizzes, and announcements.
● User-Friendly Interface: Atomic Search provides an intuitive search experience, similar to popular search engines, ensuring a consistent and user-friendly navigation experience.
Have Questions or Need Assistance?
You can review Atomic Search documentation by clicking here: Atomic Search Documentation.
WashU MyCanvas is the primary instance of Canvas, the learning management system for Washington University in St. Louis.
Canvas offers technical support 24 hours per day, 7 days per week to all faculty, staff, and students. Click the Help button from the Global Navigation Menu to access 24/7 Canvas Support via chat or phone. Help is customized for faculty, staff, and students. You can also review Canvas Guides or report a problem.
Crowdmark is an online collaborative grading and analytics platform that helps educators, working alone or in teams, to more effectively evaluate student work. The platform allows for easy distribution and collection of student work, offers tools for the assembly and management of grading teams, and provides an online workflow that streamlines grading and the delivery of rich feedback to students.
Gradescope (restricted by license to participating schools): Save time grading your existing paper-based assignments.
Additional resources from Gradescope to help you get started:
- A general Gradescope walkthrough video here.
- Our Get Started page for other helpful short videos.
- Our Help Center for written documentation and frequently asked questions.
- You can find an overview of all of our Assignment types here.
- To learn more about Exam/Quiz Assignments, click here.
- Creating and managing Online Assignments: Click here for guides.
- Our Gradescope mobile app documentation.
- Take a look at the recordings from the 2022 Gradescope Summit.
Hypothes.is (or Hypothesis) is a social annotation tool that places a conversational layer on top of texts to support collaboration, interactive reading, and engagement. Adding Hypothesis to readings in Canvas can increase active discussion right on top of PDFs and webpages, enabling students and instructors to add comments and start conversations in the margins of a course reading.
Integrating the Library
Use Kaltura for recording lectures and delivering videos to students in Canvas. Kaltura is a video tool available for teaching. It offers the ability for faculty to easily record and upload video in their courses. Using this tool, faculty can access analytics on student use of video resources and engage students in video content by incorporating comments, questions, and even quizzes.
Integrated within Canvas, Kaltura is a video hosting, sharing and recording service provided for all WashU faculty, staff and students.
Microsoft Immersive Reader
Microsoft Teams provides a collaborative platform for working together toward common goals through tools such as Conversations, Shared Files, Online Meetings, and Private Chat.
Use Microsoft Teams for quick online meetings, text-based messaging, and video conferencing with an invited list of students or colleagues. While not integrated into Canvas, you may wish to use Microsoft Teams to quickly speak with students or colleagues online. Teams links can be easily added with a single click when you send an Outlook meeting invitation.
NameCoach Roster Tool
NameCoach is a web-based service that allows members of the WashU community to voice record the pronunciation of their names. NameCoach was designed to help faculty, staff, and students learn how to pronounce the names of the people they interact with often, helping to create a more inclusive and welcoming environment for all.
Arts & Sciences is currently piloting the NameCoach Roster Tool. which is a tool integrated into Canvas that gives instructors and students the ability to play back the pronunciation of names of people in their section. Participation is optional and the tool is disabled in Canvas by default. If you would like to enable the tool for your course, use the Navigation tab. within Course Settings to enable “NameCoach Roster,” making it visible to your students. Please note: the Roster Tool does not work using Student View.
Open Educational Resources (OER) / University Libraries
- OER are broadly defined — textbooks, course materials, modules, streaming videos, tests, software, and any other tools, materials, or techniques used to support access to knowledge, in any medium
- OER are free to use and modify — released under an open license that permits no-cost access, use, adaptation and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions
- View OER LibGuide
- Learn more about OER at WashU
Padlet is a web-based pinboard that supports class discussions, projects, and more. Use Padlet to post, move, and connect ideas in a digital “wall” space. See below for an overview and tutorials on how to use it for your class.
A question and answer discussion board designed to facilitate collaborative interaction among students.
Poll Everywhere is a web-based student response system. It provides powerful tools for live polling and works well with all mobile devices (laptops, tablets, phones). See below for an overview and tutorials on how to use it for your class.
Respondus LockDown Browser
Custom browser that locks down the testing environment within a learning management system.
Use Respondus when you need to lock down and/or monitor the remote testing environment. LockDown Browser and Respondus Monitor locks down the testing environment within Canvas and protects the integrity of both proctored and unproctored online quizzes and exams. LockDown Browser and Monitor are used in conjunction with the Quizzes tool in Canvas.
This is a list of software for which Arts & Sciences Computing provides support (on Washington University owned faculty & staff computers). If you need help installing any software, please contact your departmental representative.
Cengage Learning MindLinks
Cengage Learning MindLinks™: Provides students with access to Cengage’s learning solutions (including MindTap, Aplia, SAM, CengageNOW, OWLv2, 4LTR Press Online and National Geographic Learning).
McGraw-Hill Connect: Provides access to McGraw Hill’s interactive resources tied to course content and textbooks.
Pearson MyLab and Mastering
Pearson MyLab and Mastering: Provides access to Pearson MyLab and Mastering platforms
TurnItIn: Manage the submission, tracking and evaluation of student papers online.
How do you use Turnitin in Canvas?
How do I contact Turnitin Support?
VPN allows you to connect to University resources requiring a secure Washington University network connection to access.
WashU Course Evaluations
Course Evals (Blue): Allows users to view and complete their surveys and questionnaires.
WebFAC (short for web faculty access) is a web-based application that allows:
- Instructors and teaching assistants platform for viewing course information, including class rosters (showing the numbers of enrolled, waitlisted and dropped students), course classroom location, and final exam dates and times. In addition, a built-in email tool allows instructors and teaching assistants to send emails to an entire class or selected students. Advisors to look at academic and registration information regarding assigned advisees. Advisee grades, class schedules, GPAs and unofficial transcripts for each advisee are available.
- Advisors can see student registration worksheets and authorize students to register from within WebFAC.
- WebFAC also acts as a starting point for access to other web applications, including A&S PlanIT, Blackboard, Course Evaluations, Course Listings, EGrades, Syllabi Central, WebAdvising and WebSTAC.
Use Zoom for real-time video conferencing with students as well as break-out rooms.
Zoom is a simple and powerful video conferencing solution compatible with all major platforms that makes it a primary choice for web conferencing and recording.
Zoom can be used within Canvas (utilizing course roster information) or independent of Canvas.
Washington University in St. Louis has two versions of the Zoom-Canvas integration that appear in your Canvas course navigation menu: “Zoom” and “Zoom (HIPAA)“
Meeting hosts will only be able to launch Zoom from one link or the other, although attendees are free to attend meetings from either link. The “Zoom (HIPAA)” link is primarily intended for School of Medicine employees, but some others may also be required to use this link to host a meeting. If you’re unsure which link to try, please try the “Zoom” link first. If you get a “User not found” error, then shift to the “Zoom (HIPAA)” link.
How do I login to WUSTL Zoom?
Where can I learn more about Zoom?
Zoom Training Webinars
What if my course requires more than 300 users?
If your course requires more than 300 users, contact Ken Keller with the course number and details.
Do any countries block access to Zoom?
Yes, Zoom is blocked in the following countries: Belarus, Burundi, Central African Republic, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Nicaragua, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan and Darfur, South Sudan, Syria, Ukraine (Crimea Region), United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, Yemen, and Zimbabwe.
To ensure that all of your students have access to your content, plan to record your Zoom calls and make those available for students to watch later.
- If you want to use Zoom in China, download the Zoom Client for Meetings from the Zoom Download Center (China).
- Zoom also has an alternative Web Client; no download is necessary for this experience and only requires Meeting ID, Name and password, if applicable.
How can I improve the quality of my video and audio in Zoom?
Zoom works best with a strong internet signal, particularly when teaching. If you have a slow signal, your video or the other participants’ videos will freeze or buffer and it might be hard to hear.
- Use a wired, not a wireless connection. That is, attach your computer via an ethernet cord to the router if possible.
- If connecting from a laptop, plug in to wall power. Battery use can adversely affect video quality.
- If you don’t have an ethernet cord (and you are not able to get one now), you have to maximize the Wi-Fi signal. To do so:
- Locate your router and move it to the center of the house or apartment. Keep it off the floor and out of any closets.
- Download the app Wi-Fi SweetSpots (Apple or Android) to your phone. After opening the app, walk around your house with your phone and find the place with the strongest Wi-Fi signal. It is likely close to the router. Set up your work station there.
- If your Wi-Fi appears slow during a class or presentation, have other participants shut off their videos
- Always provide participants with PowerPoints or materials after a class or meeting.