FAQ – Teachers

General information

To access your Canvas course, simply log into Ugla and click on the name of a course that you are teaching in the fall semester. 

To set up your course, make sure you have done some training

You can access recordings from a Canvas Fundamentals course here. There you can also find instructions that have been categoriszed for you.

You can find a lot of instructions and information about the possibilities of Canvas in the Canvas Community, and in the Canvas Guides.  

Your course will remain hidden until you decide to publish it. You also have a lot of control over what content is visible to students. See instructions on publishing a course. 

Preparing a course and first steps

Of course, it depends a lot on how you build your course. A booklet that you can access here covers some of the basics of a course web and how to set them up. Click on the image to download the brochure in PDF format.

Please note that in order for students to see the announcemnt and receive it by e-mail, the course must be published. You can see on the front page of the course if it is published. If the course has been published, it looks like this:

If your course is unpublished, click Publish before you write the announcement: 

On the course homepage you will find a button to the right that says „New Announcement“ and you click there: 

You then set the heading for the announcment, write the content and hit „Save“

The announcement will be sent to the students’ @hi.is email, to the app and be visible on the frontpage of the course. 

The files from your Ugla course, taught in 2019, have been migrated to Canvas. You can find them by navigating to Files, and there you can find a folder called „Efni úr Uglu“. 

If you had a Moodle course that was migrated you cand find it by navigating tou Courses –> All courses and there you will find it under „Past enrollments“. 

Teachers can invite students to a meeting in Microsoft Teams through Canvas. This is done with a small addition in the content editor that can be used either in an event on a course calendar, an announcement or on a page. The difference between these methods lies only in where the teacher wants students to have access to the link. The teacher needs to send a clear message to the students about where the link is.

To create a meeting with an event in the course calendar, the teacher simply clicks on the day on which the meeting is to take place. A window will appear where the teacher will enter the name of the meeting and the dates:

You then click „More options and the event opens in the rich content editor. 

If a teacher wants the link to appear in an announcement or on a page, he simply creates the announcement or page and uses the Canvas editor to create a link to the meeting.

There the teacher writes a short description of the event for the students and then clicks on the symbol for an external tool which is a blue v-shaped symbol:

There you click „Microsoft Teams Meetings. That opens a window where you might have to start by signing into Microsoft: 

Canvas and Teams use the same authentication so this should be seamless. If Teams asks for your authentication, it is the same as logging in with Ugla. 

Then a window opens up where you give the meeting a name and click Create: 

That creates a meeting link that you can now insert in the Rich Content Editor by clikcing „Copy“

The link is now accessible on the page, in the announcement or the calendar event.

There are two main ways to use Zoom in a Canvas course. If you have full access to Zoom at the University of Iceland and use the same email address to open Ugla and to use Zoom, then you can take the opportunity to install an add-on in Canvas that allows you to call Zoom meetings on the course’s teaching website, and those students who are registered for the course can then open that meeting, directly from the teaching website.

Instructions on how to install the plugin are here. Once the plugin is up, click Zoom in the course guide and use the interface there to set up the Zoom session, which students can then access in the same place.

If the teacher does not have full access to Zoom or if his / her access is to an email address other than the one he / she uses in the course, you can create the meeting in Zoom and then share a link to the meeting with the students. Teachers can apply for full access to Zoom at UTS: http://uts.hi.is/zoom_conference_calls 

If a teacher wants to share this link in a module, click + in the module and then „External URL“. Then enter the URL of the meeting in the „URL“ field, enter the name to be displayed in the module and make sure to choose „Load in new tab„.


In general, the Zoom plugin works well. We have had some news of a problem with user authentication in Safari. If that happens you can try to log in to your Zoom account at zoom.us with your @hi.is username in a different tab. If that dooes not open your Zoom account in Canvas, please try a different browser, preferably Chrome. 

Common issues

All participants in courses are registered in Ugla, the Student Information System, (SIS). The information there controls the access to courses in Canvas. 

If you don’t see your course in Canvas you need to contact administration and make sure that you are registered as a teacher in the course. 

Courses in Canvas are not published automatically and students will not see the course until the teacher publishes the course.

While the course is unpublished students will get a message that the course is not ready. If a student contacts you with the information that the contents of a course is not accessible, start by checking the status of your course: 

If it is red, click publish, and the status turns green: 

Further information about publishing a course and course content: http://canvas.hi.is/is-your-course-published/

Teachers can control what content is available for students. First of all the modules have to be published. You publish a module by clicking the circle on the right. When it is green, the module is published. 

When it is gray the module is not visible to students. 

This way a teacher can work on the contents of a module without students seeing what they are doing.  

Second of all the items within the module need to be published. That is done the same way, by clicking on the grey circle:

Here students will see the items with the green dot, but the last item is invisble to students.

A course has to be published in order for announcements to be sent to students. You can see on the course homepage if it is published. 


You need to create a new announcement after publishing in order for the announcment to be sent. 

Announcemnets are sent to students’ @hi.is email and sometimes they are looking for it in their own private email. Please advice them to look for announcments in their University e-mail. 

If you have older recordings stored in Panopto that you want to use in a Canvas course it needs to be moved. 

To have a video moved, please send a request to help@hi.is with the name and number of the course where the video was stored and the name and number of the course where it is supposed to go.