Canvas upload grades csv FAQ

This will be my most cited blog post ever!  Yay!  I’ll update as I discover more.

As universities and academics switch to Canvas infrastructure, here’s what I just found out…  Don’t believe Canvas about how to upload grades from csv. I just tried for an hour.  It seems like it should work. It doesn’t. Gradually you discover:

  • You have to have assignments already in Canvas. It doesn’t create new ones when you upload the csv, as promised, for mysterious reasons.
  • No matter how much your csv is formatted correctly, it won’t be, so bite the bullet and download the one from Canvas (after adding assignments) and cut and paste into that… Why? I think because Canvas has to have all the old assignments in the new csv that you upload. It can’t “add” assignments, unless it also has all the old assignments.  Dumb, since presumably you have a mix of assignments: grades external in spreadsheet and  grades in Canvas (and Speedgrader is pretty good for quickly looking at uploads).  You want to upload just the external ones.

About mkevane

Economist at Santa Clara University and Director of Friends of African Village Libraries.
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