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Using the Canvas App at FSU

The Canvas mobile app is great for referencing your course information on the go. However, when it does not function as expected, we have a list of troubleshooting tips below to assist you. In general, we recommend only using the Canvas app to check course information.

We do not recommend submitting assignments using the mobile app, especially if the assignments will significantly impact your grade. It is best to use a computer to submit course work.

The app includes many of Canvas's features but does not support all of them at this time.


Great uses for the Canvas mobile app include:

  • Reading Announcements

  • Checking your Calendars

  • Checking your Grades

  • Reading messages in the Inbox (a.k.a. Canvas Conversations)

  • Receiving Notifications

  • Checking your To Do list to see upcoming deadlines

  • Reading course material

  • Watching course lectures

We recommend using a laptop or desktop computer to submit assignments, post Discussion Board replies, and take tests, especially if the submission is worth a high number of points.

If you do need to use your mobile device to submit content, we recommend that you submit from a mobile browser such as Chrome or Safari. Although submitting your work from a mobile browser is not as reliable as doing it from a laptop or desktop, it tends to be more reliable than submitting through Canvas's mobile app.

We also recommend that you view your submission details to verify that your work transmitted successfully and correctly, even when using a computer. This step is critical when using a mobile browser or the Canvas mobile app. Check out these resources for more information:


Troubleshooting the Canvas mobile app can be challenging. A number of variables can affect an issue, which, in turn, can affect how we provide support. Some of the most common variables include:

  • Variety and age of devices - There is a large variation in device models being used in the population. For example, Verizon listed 61 different device models for sale on their website in May 2022 alone, including iPads ranging from 4th generation to 9th generation.
  • Device operating system (OS) - Most users choose between Apple's iOS devices and Android devices, but there are also other mobile device operating systems such as Kindle Fire OS, Windows 10 & 11 (Surface tablets), and more.

Because of this range of variables, even Canvas's parent company can experience difficulty offering detailed support articles to troubleshoot the mobile app. However, we do provide general advice that can help solve most app issues.

1. Close & reopen the app

Take a moment to fully close the Canvas mobile app. Once it is closed, reopen the app. This clears some temporary files or processes running in the background that can cause app performance issues. Check out these resources for more information:

2. Check for app updates

There are a surprising number of times when checking for and installing app updates will fix issues that emerge during app use. Check out these resources for more information:

3. Check your device for Operating System (OS) updates

Just like checking for app updates, checking for OS updates can solve a number of issues that might be causing the Canvas app to misbehave. Check out these resources for more information:

4. Restart your device

Similar to closing and reopening the app, the process of restarting your device will clear temporary files and background processes from your device that can cause app performance issues. Check out these resources for more information:


Android is highly customizable by device manufacturers. Visit your device manufacturer's help website for the most accurate information about restarting your Android device. These companies are the top 5 Android manufacturers, based on 2021 data:


5. Clear the app's cache

Apps store temporary files (called the cache) on your device in order to help app features load faster. However, sometimes the cache can become corrupted. By clearing your app's cache you can remove all these temporary files, including those that might be causing app performance issues.

It is important to note that Android and iOS devices handle this information differently. Android separates cached files from other app data that controls your preferences and login information, while iOS stores both kinds of data together. On Android devices, you can clear the cache without affecting the other kind of data.

On iOS devices, resetting your cache clears both kinds of data at the same time, so all app-related information on your device, including login details, some annotated documents, and app settings will be removed. Because an iOS cache reset removes app information from your device, you may want to use the instructions below (#6) to uninstall and then re-install the Canvas mobile app first.

6. Uninstall then re-install the Canvas mobile app

If the issue persists after clearing your device's cache, there might be a problem in another file that the app uses to work. Try uninstalling the Canvas mobile app and then re-installing it. This will remove all files, including those that are corrupted, and replace them with a fresh version.

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  • 26-Mar-2024