The Perusall app allows students to help each other learn by collectively annotating readings in threads, responding to each other’s comments, and interacting. Comments are automatically graded and can be passed back to Canvas assignments.
Review this guide to learn how to add Perusall to a Canvas course, set student access to Perusall, configure your settings and grading scheme, create an assignment in Perusall and add it to Canvas, and copy Perusall content into a new Canvas course.
Adding Perusall to a Canvas course
To add Perusall to a Canvas Course:
- In Canvas, click Courses on the left-side menu.
- Select the course you want to add Perusall to by clicking on the course icon. The course overview page displays.
Note: You can only add Perusall to a course where you have the teacher role (that is to say, you can publish the course).
- On the course navigation menu, click Settings.
- Click the Apps tab to view the available applications for the course.
- Find Perusall in the list and click on it. The Perusall overview displays.
- Click +Add App. The following pop-up displays:
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org to request the Consumer Key and Shared Secret.
Important: ATS must provide you with the required Consumer Key and Shared Secret before you can proceed with Perusall setup.
- Enter the Consumer Key and Shared Secret, then click Add App.
- Go to the Navigation tab and locate Perusall in the bottom list of navigation items under “Drag items here to hide them from students.”
- Click next to Perusall, then click Enable. This places Perusall in the course navigation and moves it to the top list.
- Click Save at the bottom of the page.
You can now see Perusall in the course navigation menu.
Note: Instructors must remove the Perusall link from the Canvas course navigation menu prior to publishing the course. See the instructions below in Setting student access to Perusall through Canvas.
Setting student access to Perusall through Canvas
It’s important that students do not access Perusall directly to complete assignments. If you want Perusall grades included in the Canvas course grades, your students must access the Perusall assignment through the Canvas assignment. This will sync the grades from Perusall to Canvas.
To remove the Perusall link from the course navigation menu (prior to publishing the course to students):
- On the course navigation menu, click Settings.
- Click the Navigation tab.
Perusall displays in the top list of navigation items.
- Use drag and drop to move Perusall down to the bottom list of navigation items so that it does not appear in the Canvas course navigation menu. This makes the Perusall navigation menu link unavailable for students and teachers so they have to access Perusall directly through the Assignments tab.
4. Click Save at the bottom of the page.
Note: If you do not complete this step, your students might access Perusall through the course navigation. If students do not access Perusall through the Canvas assignment, they will not receive a grade in Canvas for their annotations (although the grade will be available in Perusall).
Instructor settings for Perusall assignments
Instructors should review the general and advanced settings of Perusall assignments in the Getting Started guide.
Note: It is recommended that faculty review assignment settings in both Canvas and Perusal to ensure consistency and accuracy.
The following are the most common options you can set:
- Course start/end dates: Set the start and end dates for the assignment.
- Release scores to students: Give yourself the option of proofreading or editing grades before students can see them.
- Welcome message for students: Write a message to your students about expectations for using Perusall.
Advanced settings and grading
Perusall automatically grades your assignments based on the grading scheme you set. To sync the scores to Canvas properly, review the advanced settings in Perusall to determine your desired grading scheme.
- Assignment score range: The default range of 0-3 in Perusall will be converted to a 100-point scale in Canvas.
- Grades synced to Canvas are a percentage based on the full score range.
Instructors should review Perusall’s support documentation to learn more about how to use the app.
Be sure to share this link with your students:
Creating an assignment in Perusall
For students to annotate and collaborate on an article using Perusall, you first need to upload the assignment materials to your library, then create the assignment and set the grading scheme.
- Library: Add materials in your library for students to review in the assignment.
- Assignments: Create the assignment from materials you have uploaded to your library.
- Click Assignments on your course home page, then click + Add assignment.
- Select content to assign from the list of library resources.
- Set name and deadline: Assignment name and submission deadline must be matched in Canvas to in order to sync grades properly.
- Set other optional advanced settings.
Tip: Ensure the assignment name matches in both Perusall and Canvas.
- Grading: Review Perusall’s advanced settings to determine your desired grading scheme.
Adding a Perusall assignment to Canvas
When you have uploaded your materials and created an assignment in Perusall, you can proceed to adding the assignment to Canvas.
- On the Assignments page, click + Assignment.
Note: If you want to add the assignment under a specific group, use “More Options.”
- At Assignment Name, paste the Assignment name from Perusall.
Note: Assignment names must be identical in Canvas and Perusal.
- Set Submission Type to “External Tool.”
- At Enter or find the External Tool URL, click Find, locate “Perusall,” then click “Select.”
- Check the box for Load This Tool In A New Tab.
- Assign the Due Date, Available Date, and Until Date.
Note: All assignment dates must match with Perusall.
- Click Save & Publish. The assignment page will now appear.
- Click Load Perusall in a New Window to be redirected to your course Perusall site.
Note: In Perusall, comments remain visible to all students reading the document.
If you remove an assignment and re-add it, the annotations will remain.
Copying Perusall content into a new Canvas course
- Add the Perusall app to a new course site in Canvas.
- Add Perusall to the course navigation in the new site.
- Launch Perusall in the new course.
- To see Perusall assignments in Canvas:
- Bring over the course content using “Import course content” from a Canvas course file.
- As long as the previous Canvas assignment linked to Perusall has THE SAME NAME as the assignment in Perusall, the Perusall content will “refresh” in the old assignment. Only the due date from the old assignment needs to be updated.