How do I access the Canvas beta environment?

Canvas recently introduced a new page design called the New Canvas User Interface (UI). Depending on your Canvas view, your page design may vary from the images shown in this lesson. However, the functionality and location of the components remain the same.

The beta environment allows you to explore new features before they reach production. The beta environment is overwritten with data from the production environment every Sunday. Any work or content you add to your beta environment will be overwritten every week.

If you want to keep up on the latest beta features in Canvas, visit the Release Notes page in the Canvas Community.

The beta environment is separate from the test environment, which is overwritten with data from the production environment every three weeks and allows you to test using your real data without ruining the experience for your users. Learn more about the test environment.  

Notes about the Beta Environment:

  • Admins and instructors can always access the Canvas beta environment, but students can only access beta if enabled by your Customer Success Manager
  • Notifications, including course invitations and report downloads, cannot be sent in the beta environment
  • Crocodoc (annotation tool in SpeedGrader) 
is not available in the beta environment
  • Any changes you want to keep in the beta environment must be made directly within the production environment before beta is reset

Access Beta Environment

Access Beta Environment

To log in to your beta environment, type [organization name] into the URL field.

View Test Installation Message

Users in the beta environment will see a pink bar across the bottom of the screen indicating the user is in a Canvas Test Installation. Remember, beta environments will reset every week on Sunday and any content created in this environment will be deleted. If you want to save any course content created in your beta environment, you can export your course.

Note: To hide the pink bar across the bottom of your screen, double-click on the words Canvas Test Installation.

Manage Canvas Features

Some new features may be released as opt-in only and will not appear until you enable them in your beta environment. You can view these features in the Feature Options tab within Account or Course Settings. Learn how to manage new features for an institution or an individual course.