Administrative access to Canvas at IU

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UITS grants access to administrative tools within Canvas to people who provide support to the Indiana University campus community. An academic department can designate its own administrator to provide support for its students and instructors in the department. The designated administrator then applies for administrative access and renews the application annually. For more, see Canvas administrator basics.

Apply for or renew administrative access

  • Before applying for or renewing administrative access, you'll need to complete the Acceptable Use Agreement and FERPA tutorial.
  • If you no longer require your administrative access (for example, you are changing positions or leaving the university), you must email eLearning Design & Services Help at

To apply for administrative access, complete and submit the Canvas Administrator User Agreement. A copy of your application will be forwarded to your supervisor for approval. If approved, your request will then be forwarded to the Canvas administrators for final approval.

When your administrative rights have been applied to your account, you will receive email confirmation.

If you have questions or need help with your application, email the UITS Support Center.

Administrative roles in Canvas

When filling out the application form linked above, you will be asked to choose from the following roles:

  • Department Administrator: Users with this role can access and modify all Canvas sites associated with their designated department. Additionally, Department Administrators can create new Canvas sites for their department.
  • Outcomes Manager: This role allows you to view and edit all Outcomes associated with your designated department. You may also create new Outcomes for your department. As an Outcomes Manager, you will not have access to your department's Canvas sites.
  • IU-Wide Course/User Search: This role allows you to view all Canvas user profiles and course sites associated with IU. This role will not allow you to edit/modify user profiles or course sites. Only UITS staff are eligible for this role.
  • Become Other User: This role allows you to impersonate any user in Canvas. Only UITS staff are eligible.
  • Calendar Administrator: With this role, you can manage a calendar that is visible to everyone who has access to at least one course in your subaccount/s of interest. Calendar admins can add, edit, and delete events as needed. To use this role, email eLearning Design & Services Help at with details about your use case. All requests must be reviewed and approved.

Take courses as a Canvas administrator

If you enroll as a student in a course for which you have administrative rights, you will have both student and administrator permissions in Canvas for that course. Having both sets of permissions will make it impossible for you to function as a student in the course, and may raise ethical concerns for the instructor. To avoid this scenario, all departmental administrators who enroll in courses for which they have administrative rights must:

  • Use an IU group account to perform your administrative duties: If you do not already have one, create a group account to serve as your Canvas departmental administrator login. This account should be used only by you and only for the purpose of carrying out your department administrator responsibilities in Canvas. For more about IU group accounts, see About IU computing accounts for groups or departments.
  • Notify the Canvas administrators: Before the semester begins, report your enrollment in the course for which you have administrative rights via the Canvas Group Account Request form.

    The Canvas administrator will remove the admin privileges associated with your personal IU account and assign them to your Canvas departmental administrator group account. For the remainder of the semester, use your group account to perform your administrative duties.

    If you are a part- or full-time student, and likely to enroll in courses every semester, the Canvas administrator can arrange for you to continue to use your group account to carry out your administrative responsibilities.

At the beginning of each semester, UITS will audit Canvas enrollments to ensure all departmental administrators enrolled as students do not have administrative rights in any of their classes. UITS will reach out to all individuals who did not self-report and help them move their administrative rights to group accounts.

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Last modified on 2024-04-17 10:50:25.