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Technology » Boost App for Canvas

Boost App for Canvas

Canvas is an outstanding learning platform. The only area it can use some help is notifying students about missing  assignments and future due dates. Currently, Canvas does not notify students when assignments are coming due. This is where the Boost App becomes very useful. Boost is a new solution that plugs directly into a student’s Canvas account to deliver customized assignment reminders that work. Students can also add reminders for other assignments that might not be in Canvas. Parents can also sign into the Boost app with their student's credentials and receive important notifications to keep track their student's assignments.  Click here for a short video explanation of how Boost works. WCS has already done all the hard work to connect Boost to our Canvas, so with 2 easy steps, students and parents can start to get notifications. 
 
Boost Mobile app logo
How Students & Parents Get Started
Step One: Download Boost App for free from Apple or Google app store.
 
Step Two: After you download Boost, you will select our school and sign in using your (student) Canvas account. After that, you’ll get assignment notifications directly to your phone! 
 
 
Boost App Documentation
Boost app for students button    Boost for Teachers Button    Boost Planner Button
 
Notification types
Due Soon
This notification is triggered if an assignment is unsubmitted and the deadline is approaching. The timing of this notification can be customized between 2 to 24 hours before the assignment is due. Students can customize the timing of this notification within their notification preferences for a course. Note that not all assignments trigger the “due soon” notification--see "Eligible Assignments" below. Due soon notifications are grouped per course, so if multiple assignments are due for the same course in the same time window, they will be lumped into a single notification rather than multiple.
 
Daily Upcoming Assignment Digest
This notification is sent once a day and includes a list of all upcoming assignments due in the next 24 hours, regardless of whether the assignment has been submitted or not. Some assignments do not trigger the “due soon” notification, and the daily assignment digest is intended to be a catch-all for assignments to ensure a student is aware of all upcoming due dates. The daily digest notification can be customized per course, allowing a student to receive digest notifications for all, some, or no courses.
 
Submission Received
This notification is triggered after an assignment has been submitted. It includes encouragement and contextualized praise to motivate students and help students to put their work into the larger context of reaching their academic goals. There is a maximum of one notification per course per week, to ensure the number of notifications does not become excessive.
 
Upcoming Calendar Event
This notification is triggered 2 hours before an event on the Canvas calendar for a course.
 
Planner Items
This notification is triggered to remind a student in advance of a due date for a Canvas planner item. Canvas planner items can be added from the Boost application and the timing of the reminder can be customized to be 1-24 hours before the due date. 
 
Weekly Planner Reminder
This notification is sent once a week to remind students to plan out their work for the upcoming week by adding planner items and reminders within the Boost application.
 
Announcement
This notification is triggered after a new announcement is posted in a course. Note that this notification type is available both in Boost and the Canvas Student app. Boost will allow students to customize their notification preferences for announcement notifications per course, whereas Canvas requires students to turn announcement notifications on or off for all courses. Students using both applications may want to enable/disable notifications for announcements in one app or the other, depending on personal preferences.
 
Additional Information 
Does it work on an iPad? The Boost app is designed for phones and is not "optimized" for an iPad as far as the "look and feel" of the app. The app will still send notifications, track upcoming assignments and input your own events, but the dimensions are designed to fit a phone and will look odd on an iPad. 
 
Can parents monitor more than one student? Boost doesn't currently have the capability for a parent to receive notifications for multiple students to a single device. One workaround would be to have one adult member of the family log into Boost for "child A" and another adult member of the family log into Boost as "child B" to monitor that account. For single parents, they could use a second mobile device if they have one. Additionally, single parents could log out of "child A" and login with "child B". 
 
Is Boost secure? Absolutely! Boost was developed out of research at Indiana University and thus was developed using the highest standards of security. During its development Boost had a HECVAT (security audit for 3rd party vendors) was completed and approved. The vast majority of the data we store is de-identified and stored simply as Canvas ID. The only Personally Identifiable Information (PII) we store is student name and this information is just for display within the app to that specific student.
 
Does this work with all assignments? Assignment daily digest notifications can be sent regardless of assignment type or submission status. The only requirements are that the assignment be published, open to students, and have a due date. However, assignment due notifications are narrower in scope, because not all assignment types provide sufficient data in Canvas in order for Boost to intelligently notify students about a potentially missed deadline.
 
For an assignment due notification to be sent, assignments must additionally:
  • Not be a group assignment
  • Be assigned to everyone in the course. Differentiated assignments that are only assigned to a single section, group, or student are not included.
  • Be graded (“Display Grade as” is not set to Not Graded, is not omitted from the final grade, and has more than 0 points assigned)
  • Be an online submission (On Paper and No Submission are excluded)
  • If a quiz, there should not be an access code. (An access code is typically included only for proctored exams, which students cannot access directly)
  • If an external tool submission, the tool must send assignment submission information to Canvas before the due date. Currently, the only tool confirmed to do so is Quick Check; assignments using other external tools are currently not included. If you’re not receiving Assignment Due Notifications as expected, please check to make sure that your teacher for the course is not using an external tool.
  • Not be submitted already by the student receiving the notification; students who have submitted previously will not be notified