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There are five ways to add instructional videos to Canvas:


Note: These recommendations are for instructional videos only. For recommendations on capturing lecture video contact your local academic support staff.

Record a video directly in Canvas

This approach is good for creating brief “talking head” videos to make announcements to the class or provide context for an assignment.

Step-by-step instructions on how to record video directly into Canvas:

Upload video files

This approach is good for uploading existing individual video files.

When using this approach keep in mind:

  • The maximum file size is 500 MB. This cannot be changed.
  • There is no limit to the number of files you can upload to a course as long as each file is smaller than 500 MB.
  • Video files uploaded uploaded into a course count against the course quota. Files uploaded directly to your user files or group files count against each specific quota.
  • When video files are uploaded they are converted automatically to a format supported by your browser. It's the responsibility of the Canvas user to retain a copy of the original unconverted video file if desired. (More information about supported file types.)
  • If a video file is uploaded to a course site, and the site is then copied, the link to the uploaded video will continue to work in the new site.

Step-by-step instructions on how to upload video files in Canvas:

Link to YouTube videos

This approach is good for linking to larger video files that exceed the 500 MB size limit for uploading files directly to a Canvas course.

Step-by-step instructions on how to link to a YouTube video.

Link to videos hosted elsewhere

This approach is good for linking to larger video files that exceed the 500 MB per video size limit or for videos that are available from other hosting services besides YouTube. You can use the Rich Content Editor and "iFrames" to embed the video in a Canvas page.

The example below explains how to embed a video from the video hosting service Vimeo:

  1. First, create a page in your course. Use the Rich Content Editor to create and format the page content like you typically would.
  2. Next, navigate online to the video you want to embed. In this example we are using a video from Vimeo.
  3. Vimeo provides pre-written iFrame code for you to use. Navigate to the video you want to use, and click the share icon on the video that looks like a paper airplane. Then select and copy the iFrame code from the Embed field. (If your video hosting service does not provide pre-written iFrame code, skip to step 5 below.)
  4. Navigate back to your Canvas page. In the Rich Content Editor select the HTML Editor. Once the HTML for the page is exposed, place your cursor where you want the embedded video to appear and paste in the iFrame code. Save the page. Now the embedded video will appear in the page.
  5. Note: if necessary you can write your own iframe code to embed a video in your page. Explaining how to write the iFrame HTML is beyond the scope of this document. However there are many instructions available online or you can contact your school's academic support staff. Once you have your iFrame code written, return to step number 4 above to add your iFrame to a Canvas page.

For a more in-depth discussion on this topic you can visit the related conversation in the Canvas Community.

Add video files to course Files -- not recommended

While it is possible to upload video files directly to course files or to a Canvas user’s personal files, this approach is not recommended because the video files will use up storage quota. For example:

  • If a teacher uploads a video file into the assignment description, or into the course Files section, that file counts against the course quota.
  • If a student submits a video file assignment, or uploads a video file to their personal files, that counts against the student’s user quota.
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