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Canvas: What should you think about when creating an assignment?

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Constructive Alignment

The following must always be consistent in a course: 

  • Assessments and assessment criteria 
  • Learning activities 
  • Description of learning outcomes in the course 

When all these agree with each other we call it “Constructive Alignment” 

Formative or summative assessment? 

Any assignment during a course should be organised so as to make students better able to complete a good exam, and can therefore be called “formative”. Keep this in mind when creating an assignment and assessing it! 


Students greatly appreciate comprehensive feedback. This is particularly important when assessments are formative. 

Canvas presents many good opportunities for giving feedback using SpeedGrader. 

Assessment criteria 

It is also helpful to provide clear assessment criteria for an assignment, so that the students know what they are being assessed for. 

You can make this even more clear by using the assessment guide in Canvas. You can also write comments directly linked to the specific assessment criteria.