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Canvas Studio and Recording Guidelines
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Recording Guidelines

This activity will outline some basic guidelines for getting the best possible video content out of your classroom, while also ensuring the resulting video file isn't too large to upload to Canvas.  It is important to note that filming long videos (over 10 minutes) often results in very large file sizes.  These video files could reach 10 or 20 gigabytes (gb), which would take hours to upload.  The longer you are uploading, the higher the chance that something will interrupt your upload, requiring you to start the process all over again.  This can cause major headaches if you are trying to submit the night before an assignment is due.  For these reasons, we strongly suggest reviewing the material below and using the internet to find device specific instructions for lowering your recording resolution, to ensure your resulting video file is small enough for easy upload and submission.

After completing this activity, you will be able to:

  • Update your recording device's setting

  • Position your recording device in your classroom to get the best video content

Device Settings

We recommend reducing the video recording settings to record in 720P at 30 frames per second. These settings will produce a quality video without creating a big video file. 

In order to adjust these settings, look for your device specific instructions below.

*Please note that the interface of your device might be different than what's shown below. You can google “name_of_phone adjust recording settings” and look for instructions on how to change your recording settings if your device is not listed.

On iOS

Open Settings > Click on the Camera App > Record Video > Change settings to 720p at 30fps.

[These settings are the same on iPhones and iPads]


On Android

Adjusting your settings on Android devices will vary depending on the version of Android OS or the brand of the device you are using. 

For older versions of Android OS (Prior to 2018): Open your Camera app > Tap settings (usually located in the upper right corner) > Tap Video Size > And tap on HD (1280x720).



For new versions of Android OS (Open your Camera app > Tap settings (usually located in the upper left corner) > In the pop-up that comes on up the screen, toggle resolution to FHD and the Frame/sec to 30fps.



On Windows 10 Devices


Many modern devices with Windows 10 include a webcam and to use it you need an app that helps you take pictures, record videos, or stream video while video chatting. For this purpose, Microsoft has built an app called Camera, which is available by default in Windows 10. In this guide, we show everything you need to know on the best Camera app settings for smaller video sizes during recording.


Click or tap on the search box from the taskbar and type in the word camera > Then, either click or tap on the Camera app, or select it from the results > press Open on the right side of the panel.



Once you open the Camera app, switch to the “Take Video” mode > Click or tap the “Take Video” button from the right side of the app’s window > then click or tap “Take Video” one more time to start recording.


To adjust the resolution and video settings, Click or tap the cog wheel in the upper left corner > Scroll down to Video > Click or tap “Video quality” > select the desired video resolution.



When recording with a Mac, please consider using the following features:

QuickTime Player: QuickTime Player is a built-in app that can record your screen or webcam. Open QuickTime Player, go to "File" in the menu bar, and select "New Movie Recording".

iMovie: iMovie is another built-in app that allows you to create and edit videos. You can record directly from your webcam within iMovie.

Third-Party Apps: There are also many third-party apps available for recording videos on a Mac, such as ScreenFlow, Camtasia, OBS Studio, and many more. These often offer more advanced features and customization options than built-in tools.


Sony Handycam

Some Relay campuses may have cameras available for students to borrow. If you are using one of these cameras, please be sure to review the Sony Handycam How-To Guide.


Classroom Filming Tips

Video is a key component of the Relay experience.  You will be watching exemplary teaching and you will be submitting videos of your own teaching for review.  The goal of this document is to share some key elements, strategies, and best practices for capturing high quality video.  

  • Before Filming

    • Be sure to review the assessment rubric before you start the process of filming your lesson.  This will ensure that you're ready to capture all the parts required for your assessment.

    • The first time you use your recording device, be sure to test the entire process, from recording to uploading, so you have an idea of the technical requirements.  You'll want to be able to work through any difficulties well ahead of the assessment due date.

  • Setting Up Your Device and Memory Card

    • Remember to clear your memory card before you film!  You should also ensure that the lock switch is not enabled on the card (if present).  

    • For the most manageable video files, select Standard Quality on the recording device.  If you select HD or 4K, the file sizes will be quite large and they may take a long time to upload to Canvas, which may require editing or compression of the video clip to make it small enough to upload.

    • We recommend that you plug your recording device in while you film.  This will ensure that the battery will not run out of power while capturing your lesson.


  • Setting Up Your Device (Framing and Angles)

    • Great teaching videos capture both your instruction and your students' reactions.  Consider filming the first two rows in a full room of students or your entire small group so we can see how your students react to your teaching. 

    • If you have a co-teacher, be sure that you've checked in with them in regarding your teaching duties.  You'll want to be sure that you're capturing material that is relevant for your assessment and remember that your advisor will be grading you, not your co-teacher. 

    • In order for your faculty advisors and your peers to review your video, they are going to need to be able to hear you and your students!  Be sure to place your device close enough to the front of the room, or where you might be working, so your audio can be captured clearly.  Faculty will also want to be able to hear student responses to questions.

    • If your instructional materials are an integral part of your lesson and you'd like to include them for your assessment, be sure that we can see them on the board.

  • Filming 

    • The best videos are filmed with the tripod provided to ensure that the view is steady and smooth.

    • Feel free to snag close ups of your students' work to help your video!  However, we recommend using the tripod particularly while you are teaching, to make things steady.

    • Once you start filming, we recommend letting the recording device roll continuously during your lesson.

  • Editing and Sending Videos for Assessments

    • We recommend creating a weekly routine for filming and transferring files off of your recording device.  This might be offloading to an external hard drive, or uploading to Google Drive.  A transferring process ensures that the material is backed up.

    • Be sure that the video timestamps you list for your assessment align to the rubric.  Your advisors will want to see accurate timestamps so they can assess and celebrate your teaching!

Studio Assignments

This activity will cover all the necessary steps to submit your classroom video to your course assignment using the Studio video tool within Canvas.  This activity is broken up into four parts, the first video will cover the steps necessary to get your video off your device, into Studio, and submitted to an assignment.  This video will also cover adding timecoded comments to your video, which must be done after the assignment has been submitted.  The section video will cover how to add supporting documents to your Studio submission.  The third section of this activity is a paper companion guide that outlines the processes covered in video 1 and 2 for quick reference.  Finally, this activity ends with the official Canvas guides for Studio in case you wish to learn more! Note: recording directly in Studio is not recommended, as your may lose your video.

After completing this activity, you will be able to:

  • Upload a video to Studio

  • Submit a Studio video as an assignment

  • Add timecoded comments to your Studio submission

  • Upload supporting documents to your Studio submission

Upload & Submit a Studio Assignment with Timecoded Comments


[Paper Guide] Submitting a Studio Assignment with Annotations


This guide will cover how a student can submit a Studio video assignment with annotations.  This guide can also be viewed directly if preferred.




Related Canvas Guides: 

During your synchronous session, you may practice uploading here. This page is just for practice and is NOT scored as part of your grade for the course. 
Important: When uploading your video, be sure to do so using the "Studio" tab in the uploader. This will allow you to  annotate the video and receive video-based comments from your instructor directly on the video.  For more detailed directions, revisit the previous two pages

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