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Canvas Use Guidelines


The following guidelines define what types of sites will be permitted for migration to Canvas. These guidelines were drafted by the LMS Steering Committee and approved on a temporary basis by senior leadership to support the migration of project sites away from Sakai without impeding Canvas’s primary use for course management and traditional student engagement.

Canvas, a learning management system (LMS), is an instructional platform designed to administer and support courses. In order to provide an optimal instructional experience and adhere to the terms of our vendor agreements, the use of Canvas will be limited to specific academic and/or instructional purposes. To ensure these standards are met, the following Canvas use guidelines have been developed by the LMS Transition Steering Committee in conjunction with faculty and staff.


Canvas can be used for the following purposes:

  1. To deliver an official Rutgers course offered as part of a degree program (traditional and online), continuing education program, or professional certificate.
  2. To support, administer, or develop content related to a Rutgers course and/or program including purposes such as;
    1. Sites used for the development and storage of instructional content used in traditional courses/programs, continuing education programs, or professional certificates.
    2. To provide program or degree resources for students, such as student cohort sits, student demographic sites, and student portfolios.
    3. For continuous education, extension, and professional development course administration, support, or student communication.
    4. To support medical residencies, clinical rotations, and fellowship programs.
    5. Course evaluation processes such as Quality Matters.
    6. Teaching evaluations that require access to course content.
    7. Student project sites.
  3. To provide Rutgers students with resources and training related to their role as a student such as;
    1. Sites used to deliver content related to academic integrity, student safety, University policies, student development, etc.
    2. Sites used to deliver Rutgers student employee training.
  4. To deliver user training related to academic or instructional purposes including;
    1. Sites used to deliver training for instructional technologies such as Canvas, Kaltura, Ally, Gradescope, etc.
    2. Sites used to provide role-based training related to instructional or academic purposes such as Canvas admin and support training, academic process/procedure training, etc.

Non-academic/Non-instructional Sites

Unlike Sakai, sites that do not directly serve or support an academic and/or instructional purpose as outlined above will not be permitted on Canvas. Examples of non-academic/non-instructional sites in this category include sites used for project management, committee work, and/or other administrative purposes. Sites used as repositories for or the distribution of non-academic/non-instructional content, sites used for communication not-related to academics or instruction, and/or sites used to support administrative purposes such as tenure tracking, would also be included in this category. Finally, any sites used for training/content related to non-instructional technologies or training/content related to administrative purposes targeting only staff and/or faculty will not be permitted on Canvas.


If a user feels that their intended use of Canvas has been incorrectly categorized as a non-permitted use case, the user may request an exception for use of Canvas by submitting an exemption request {insert exemption request link}. The request will be reviewed by the admin team to determine if the intended use is acceptable.

Requests for exceptions must contain one or more of the following:

  • Site description
  • Business justification, including the intended audience
  • Review of alternative solutions available
  • Intended interaction or functionality in LMS required
  • Third-party integrations required