How to: Add staff to a Canvas course


Canvas, How to, LMS, People, Roles & Responsibilities Leave a Comment

What is the People button?

The People button in Canvas will show you all the people who have access to your course, both students and staff. Its also where you go to add staff (students are added by an automated ITS process) and to create student groups.

How do I add my staff?

To add extra staff to a course, follow the steps below:

  1. Click People.
  2. Click the + People button.
  3. Enter the email address of the staff member to be added.
  4. Select the Role and Section.
    For teachers who need access to the course to build and add content, leave both these settings at the default.
    To assign a different role, see this note about teaching roles in Canvas.
    To assign a staff member to access only specific tutorial/class group/s, see the note about using Sections in Canvas.
  5. Click Next.
  6. Click Add User.


Users can have more than one role in any given course. If this is the case, that person will have the combined permissions of each role they’ve been assigned. However, it’s generally unnecessary and potentially confusing to assign multiple roles. You can simply change the user role to the higher level if necessary. Refer to the Further Help tab for instructions for adding users and editing roles in Canvas.

Please see the Note: User roles in Canvas for an overview of the permissions assigned to the major roles. 


One or more of my students aren’t appearing in my Canvas course

Firstly, it takes 24-48 hours for student enrolments to appear in Canvas. If the student only enrolled recently check back again tomorrow.

If its been longer than that, talk to your School Admin to make sure the students’ enrolment details are correct in SAMs.

If they’re correct, raise a servicedesk ticket with ITS.

My teaching staff don’t have access to my course

You can add tutors and other teachers to your own course.

People > + People > paste their RMIT email address (or a list of addresses, one on each line) into the box > Select the role you want them to have (TA is the tutor role, Teacher will give them full editing privileges) > Click Next >You will receive a message asking you to confirm addition for the person or list of persons on the next page. If all are found > click Add users and you’re done.

At this point, if the system can’t find the email address you will be notified. Make sure its correctly entered. If so, the person doesn’t yet have a canvas account.

This may be because they’re a new staff member and the HR onboarding process is not yet complete. Check with your school admin officers.

If they’re not a new staff member and they have access to other RMIT systems, contact ITS and request they be given Canvas access.

No students are appearing in my course

Regular course, not linked to any other

If your course has been passed through QA more than 48 hours ago, and its NOT a crosslisted course, contact Project Rewire

If it is a crosslisted course

Check the other course that it should be linked to. You should have at least 2 sections of students appearing, one for every course that is linked. This will appear in Settings > Sections and will also be noted in People next to the student’s name. The course you should be using is the one with students enrolled. If there are no students in that course either, contact Project Rewire

Can staff add other staff to their course?

Yes, they can.  Please remember that the staff member to be added must have an active Canvas RMIT account. If you try to add them using the instructions below, and Canvas does not find the account, please contact ITS.
How to: Add staff to a Canvas course


Where do I go to see who is enrolled in my course?

To see who is enrolled in your course, just click on People in the Course Navigation Menu.  You will see a list of everyone enrolled in your course.

How do I communicate with individual groups in Canvas?

You can use the Conversations (Inbox) function to communicate with the individual groups in your course.  When composing a message, click on the arrow next to Select course, and then select the group from the list.  To learn more about conversations, refer to How to: Use conversations in Canvas.

Can I batch import groups and group members?

Currently, no. You can bulk create groups using the Canvas + Groupset function. You can also randomly assign students to those groups, or allow students to self-assign, but there is no function that allows you to create groups and control membership via a file upload.

Inactive tag in People page

If a student has a grey ‘inactive’ button next to their name in the People page it means they were enrolled but have since dropped the course. They’re still listed in the People section for auditing and record keeping, but they won’t appear in the Grades section.

Can I view my course as a student in Canvas?

Yes, you can. In the Course you wish to view

  1. Click Settings
  2. Click Student view (right-hand side menu on your screen)


  • This does not allow you to see an accurate view of section restrictions.
  • When you’re in student view you will see a pink bar at the bottom of the page. Use this to return to normal view. Choose Leave student view.


Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Be the First to Comment!

Notify of