Why should I do this? 

  • There are tools in Canvas that you can use to make it more difficult for students to cheat on quizzes, exams, and assignments. When using these tools, it is important to be aware that many will also add stress and pressure to students who have no intention of cheating. 
  • There are also tools in Canvas that can make it easier to grade assessments or question types that cannot be automatically graded. 

How can I do this?

Caution: Strategies 8–12 may add stress to students who have no intention of cheating. 

  1. Use Speed Grader, Gradebook, and rubrics to grade more efficiently. One of the challenges of using online assessments other than quizzes or exams is the grading that is required. Canvas’s Speed Grader, Gradebook, and Rubric tools help speed up that grading, and rubrics have the added benefit of guiding students toward what you want to see in an assignment. Research suggests that students who receive rubrics ahead of time also tend to perform better on the subsequent assignment (Goodrich Andrade, 2001). Guidance for creating and evaluating rubrics can be found here.
  2. Use TurnItIn to check for plagiarism in student work. 
  3. Provide students with a practice quiz to test the technology. This can help to alleviate stress and to identify potential issues before students take a quiz or exam for a grade. Set up the practice quiz with the same settings you intend to use for the graded quiz or exam.
  4. Use quiz settings that maximize security. Some of the specific settings identified in this document are highlighted below.
  5. Hide sensitive files on Canvas so students cannot access them before the quiz or exam
  6. Randomize the numbers that students receive in calculation problems
  7. Use question groups so students see different versions of the same question
  8. Use question groups to randomize the order of questions (regardless of whether you have multiple versions of the same question)
  9. Shuffle the order of answer choices (see Set Quiz Options – 1)
  10. Set a time limit for the quiz or exam (see Set Quiz Options – 2)
  11. Show one question at a time
  12. Prevent backtracking by selecting “lock questions after answering”
  13. Set a window of time when your students can take the quiz or exam (see Assign Quiz and Dates)Caution: It may not be possible for all students in your course to access the exam synchronously (for example, students who are participating in your course remotely from a different time zone). When determining the period of time your students can access your exams, plan for ways to accommodate students who will not be able to take your exams synchronously and communicate it with your students. 


Andrade, H. G. (2001). The effects of instructional rubrics on learning to write. Educational Theory and Practice Faculty Scholarship, 6. http://scholarsarchive.library.albany.edu/etap_fac_scholar/6