Student Guide to Using Canvas Assignments for Exams

Things you’ll need to have before the exam

  • A quiet location with uninterrupted Internet connectivity. Connect to a network in advance via wifi or preferably through an ethernet port.
  • A desktop or fully charged laptop with charging cord.
  • A Two-Step Authentication method (e.g. phone, tablet).
  • A supported web browser. We recommend Chrome.

For Canvas help, please email:

Instructors will create an online Assignment, to allow students to submit exam files, such as Word and Google documents through Canvas. Navigate to Canvas and log in with your SUNet ID and password. Click the appropriate course on the Dashboard. 

  1.  Access the assignment through your Canvas course.
  2. Click on Submit Assignment.


You may be asked to complete your work as a ‘File Upload’ or in a ‘Text Entry’ box.  

File Upload

  • Please note the due date, availability time and type of submission for the exam and whether only certain file types are accepted.


  • Click Choose File and select from your computer.
  • Once uploaded, do not forget to Submit Assignment.

Text Entry Box 

  1. Please note the due date, availability time and type of submission for the exam.
  2. Be sure to click outside of the text box as you type occasionally to save your work.
  3. For optimal height, click and drag handle in the bottom right corner of the text box down.
  4. For optimal font size, change Font Sizes in the text box’s menu bar.

Submission Received   

You know your submission has gone through if you see a checkmark and ‘Submitted!’ text above your submission date and time. You can click on Submission Details to review your submission.


In the event of an Internet outage 

Your answers are saved every time you click outside a text box. However, if your internet connection goes out, you will see this message


You can continue to work while this message shows, but your work won’t be backed up to the server. Until your computer reconnects, do not select back, forward, or refresh on your browser and do not click the Submit Assignment button

  • If your network does not reconnect with Canvas by the end of the exam, save your work in a document and email the instructor with the exam attached.  Do not modify your doc after the end of the test (your time stamp will prove you completed work on time). If your internet remains down entirely and you have a smart phone, take a photo and email it to your instructor via the cellular network.