Add Users to a Canvas Course

Instructors may add additional users to Canvas sites. There are 4 roles to which an Instructor can add and assign a user:

  • TA - Gradebook access and edit access. Please note that only graduate students, staff members, and faculty can be added as TAs.
  • Undergraduate TA - Edit-only access; no gradebook access. Please note that only undergraduate students can be added as Undergraduate TAs.
  • Designer - Edit-only access; no gradebook access.
  • ObserverView-only access. This role cannot submit assignments or post in discussion threads.

Note: Students officially registered for a course through Courses@Brown are automatically enrolled in courses. To protect privacy of registered students and adhere to FERPA, students who have not registered cannot be added to a class in the 'Student' role manually.  
When observers, TAs, or designers are added to a Canvas course, they are also enrolled in other course tools, such as wikis and blogs.  

Add a Brown user to Canvas

  1. Click People in the Course Navigation menu on the left side of your Canvas course.
  2. Click + People.
  3. Enter the Brown email address or username for the user(s).

    Email addresses and usernames can be entered one per line or separated by commas. Email addresses must follow the official Brown format, i.e., An alias address such as will not work.
  4. Select the role of the user in the Role menu.
  5. Select the section to which the user belongs. If the course only has one section, it is automatically chosen and the menu is not displayed here.
  6. Click Add Users.
  • Adding users to a Canvas site using this method will also give them access to the Online Course Reserves and add them to the course email list.
  • Instructors can only add Brown users to a course. At this time, users outside of Brown cannot view a Canvas site unless the course site is made public.
  • If instructors add an undergraduate student as a TA, the student will instead be added as an Undergraduate TA. Only graduate students can be added as TAs.
  • Instructors can only add users to a course if it is an official course (available in Banner for registration).
  • Students and Auditors are users that are officially enrolled via the Brown Registrar.  You will not be able to add someone to either of these groups.
  • During the first two weeks of the term, a "Prospective Student" is someone that's added him/herself using  While they are not officially registered, they have the same permissions and function as a registered student for the shopping period.  All "Prospective Students" will lose access to any Canvas site at the end of shopping period, if they have not officially registered.

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