Canvas Calendar and To Do List

Canvas includes an email account which students will use to email their teachers and classmates throughout the school year. Please watch this brief video for an overview of the Inbox. Canvas has provided detailed directions below for more information.

Global Navigation Tool

Canvas provides a messaging service to keep all your communication with other students and teachers in your course organized in one place.

The Inbox is split into two panels and displays messages chronologically. You can view and reply to conversations and sort them by course or inbox type. The Inbox itself does not have any file size limits; however, attachments added to a conversation are included in the sender's personal files.

Use the Inbox to:

    • Send a message to someone in your course or group
    • Send a message to yourself (displays in your Sent folder)
    • Reply to messages from others in your course
    • Filter conversations by course or type
    • View and reply to assignment submission comments

  When would I use the Inbox?

In Global Navigation, click the Inbox link.

If the Inbox link includes a numbered indicator, the indicator shows how many unread messages you have in your Inbox. Once you read the new messages, the indicator will disappear.

View Toolbar

  View Toolbar

The toolbar includes global message options. To load conversations, filter your messages by course or group [1] and type [2]. Filtering by type lets you filter messages by Inbox, Unread, Starred, Sent, Archived, and Submission Comments. You can compose a message at any time using the compose icon [3].

You can also search for conversations by user in the Search by user field [4].

  View Toolbar Options

Once you have selected a conversation, you can use the other options in the toolbar to:

    1. Reply to a conversation
    2. Reply-all to a conversation
    3. Archive a conversation
    4. Delete a conversation
    5. Forward mark a conversation as read or unread, and star conversations

View Inbox Panels

View Conversation Panels

Conversations for your selected course and Inbox filter appear in the left Inbox panel.

View Conversations

View Conversations

The Inbox is organized chronologically from newest to oldest with the newest conversations appearing on top [1] and the older conversations at the bottom.

You can manually mark a conversation as read or unread by hovering over the conversation and clicking the circle to the left of the conversation [2]. To star a conversation, hover over the conversation and click the star to the right of the conversation [3].  

View Conversation Thread

  View Conversation Thread

When you select a conversation [1], all messages in the thread of the conversation appear in the right Inbox panel [2].  

Manage Conversation Thread

  Manage Conversation Thread

Within each conversation, you can reply, reply-all, forward, or delete the entire conversation thread [1]. You can also hover over an individual message and use the same commands within the individual message [2].  

Select Multiple Conversations

  Select Multiple Conversations

To select multiple messages to archive, delete, mark as read, mark as unread, or star, click the checkbox for each message [1]. You can also press the command key (Mac) or the control key (Windows) while clicking each message you want to select. In the Inbox toolbar [2], click the desired option.

To select all messages, click the command + A keys (Mac) or the control + A keys (Windows).

To select a range of messages, click the first message you want to select, hold down the Shift key, and then click the last message you want to select. All messages between the first and the last messages will be selected.

You can also click the message checkbox or use the same keyboard command to deselect a message.


  • If you right-click or option-click on the Inbox link, you can open your Inbox in a new browser tab to keep it handy while you are doing other tasks in Canvas.
  • Users display in Conversations once they have an active enrollment in the course, and users cannot join a course unless it is published.
  • Once a course has concluded, you cannot message users in that course.