Canvas assignments are a vital area for managing assessments in a course. “Assignments” in Canvas include quizzes, graded discussions, and online submissions of student work. The Assignments page shows students the bulk of the activities and assessments they will be expected to complete along with how much they are worth and how they are weighted.  


  • Assignments can be created in a number of places, such as the Modules area or Assignments area of a course. 
  • “Quizzes” refers to exams, tests, and quizzes.
  • No matter where they are created, all assignments (e.g., quizzes, graded discussions, and online submissions) show up on the assignment page.  
  • All assignments can be seamlessly linked to, from the Modules area.  

How does Canvas differ from Blackboard? 

  • Weighted grading does not occur in the grade book, but rather through the “Assignments” page through Assignment Groups.  
  • Similar to Blackboard, all graded assignments display in the Canvas Gradebook automatically. Assignments that are not graded (display as not graded) do not show up in the Canvas Gradebook. 
  • In Blackboard assignments could only be in one location (such as Assignment Guidelines or Course Content). In Canvas, tools are more integrated so any assignments will show up in the assignments area and can also be placed in any module without creating duplicates.  

How to use – Canvas instructions 


Assignments Overview from Instructure Canvas Community Video Guides

Best Practices and Accessibility 

  • To help your students succeed, it is recommended that you plan your assessments and weighting of grades by the start of the course.  
  • Provide assessment guidelines that explain the purpose of the assignment with detailed information on expectations, content, format (e.g., length, citations), and if appropriate a rubric to explain what success looks like.  
  • To level up your teaching impact, consider implementing Universal Design for Learning principles in one or more of your assessments. For example, it could look like giving students different response options or modalities for an assignment (e.g., a paper or presentation or short video). Speak with your division’s UDL ambassador for more ideas and guidance.