Canvas includes a set of default notification preferences you can receive for the courses you are observing. Notifications are sent to Canvas contact methods as specified in your account User Settings. However, you can change the default settings by setting your own notification preferences. These preferences only apply to you; they are not used to control how course updates are sent to the student you are observing.

Some notifications may not apply to the observer role. To learn more about each notification, default settings, and notification triggers, view the Canvas Notifications PDF.

Notifications are sent as one of four delivery types: notify me right away, daily summary, weekly summary, or don't send. If you change a setting, the change is made immediately to your account.

Notification settings apply to all courses you are observing; you cannot change settings for individual courses.

You can reply directly to email notifications outside of Canvas and have the reply appear in Conversations. However, please be aware that attachments added as part of an external reply are not included with the message shown in the Canvas Inbox.

Open Notifications

Open Notifications

In Global Navigation, click the Account link [1], then click the Notifications link [2].

Set Notification Preferences

Set Notification Preferences

Each notification is set to a default preference. To change a notification for a contact method, locate the notification and click the icon for your preferred delivery type.

To receive a notification right away, click the check mark icon [1]. These notifications may be delayed by up to one hour in case an instructor makes additional changes, which prevents you from being spammed by multiple notifications in a short amount of time.

To receive a daily notification, click the clock icon [2].

To receive a weekly notification, click the calendar icon [3]. The date and time of your weekly notifications are posted at the bottom of the notifications page.

If you do not want to receive a notification, click the remove icon [4].


  • Each set notification preference will automatically apply to all of your courses. They cannot be set individually.
  • Twitter and SMS notification preferences do not support daily summary or weekly summary options.
  • Unregistered contact methods will appear in notification preferences but will not receive notifications until you confirm the registration.

View Privacy Notice

View Privacy Notice

If you've set a notification preference for an email address that is outside your institution, you may see a privacy warning. You can close the warning by clicking the OK button. Once the warning has been displayed, it will not display again.

112 - Notification Preferences from Canvas LMS on Vimeo.