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Laying out a Canvas product roadmap as we continue through COVID-19

In a world struggling to cope with the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s difficult to overstate the extraordinary commitment we’re witnessing as educators and students across the globe have tirelessly continued the hard work of teaching and learning together, even when they can’t “be together.”

In the chaotic transition to remote learning, Canvas, and the whole Instructure team, have helped teachers, students, and a world of parents establish some sense of connectedness and continuity amidst seemingly constant change.

Canvas stayed up and available. We integrated a variety of video and social tools that became infinitely more important overnight. We incorporated extensive self-help tools and tutorials to meet the exploding demand for support. We focused on simplifying content and course creation and management.  Our partners, too, rose to the occasion with better integrations and friendlier terms to accommodate the changing landscape. And so, so much more as we engaged with and learned from many of you who were actively working your way through these challenges. 

As we reflect on all the work we’ve done together so far, it makes good sense to share a little about the path forward from here. Rest assured that (even in times of such dramatic change in the world and in our company) our globally distributed product and engineering teams, whether working from their homes or from our many offices across the US, Europe, Latin America, and Asia Pacific, are committed to supporting the #canvasfam and all the good work you do.  

The commitment is expressed by our dedication to:

Canvas.  Customers.  Culture.

These three words have become a new mantra for us during the past couple of months, and they’re full of meaning as we look ahead.

Canvas – It’s all about education and Instructure is returning to a clear focus on this.

Customers – We’re committed to your mission and your success.

Culture – We’re building a place where people do their very best work because the work they do for you matters.

In the coming months you’ll see our teams focus and simplify.  At the center of our approach is the belief that “everyone learns together.”  

For us this means:

  • Orienting learners and putting them front and center in their own experience 
  • Ensuring students get immediate, regular, and accessible feedback
  • Enriching learning with engaging activities, ubiquitous communication, and pervasive support
  • Providing a rich ecosystem of compelling and interoperable tools that complement the educator and learner’s journey
  • Meeting educators and learners where they are with experiences designed to be easy, extensible, equitable, and accessible

Practically speaking, these broad themes translate into some specific areas of focus within Canvas in the near term:

  • Deeper Canvas and MasteryConnect integration
  • Deliver richer and more timely data
  • Gradebook performance at a very large scale
  • Accessibility and WCAG 2.1
  • Deploying Portfolium in Europe, Canada, Asia/Pacific
  • Lovable quizzing
  • Simpler rich content editor
  • Pervasive outcomes
  • Meaningful notifications

As we make our way through these next few months and prepare for an uncertain second half of 2020 it’s important to us that we all stay connected.  You’ll find an ongoing view of our work (and the ability to engage in it) here:

https://community.canvaslms.com/community/ideas  

That engagement might even lead to a little more #canvasconfetti from time to time…

 — two double quotes without any content).

Keep Learning,

-mlb