Tools for Teaching

  • Faculty & Staff

What's new?

The following tools are recommended for remote teaching:

Your Class Mailing List

If you already have a system in place for contacting students (such as an email list or Canvas Announcements), use what is already working. If not, there are easy ways you can get messages to your students.

The University has set up a Class Mailing List for every official University course. You can access your class list through Courses In Touch

See detailed information about using class mailing lists.

Essential information:

  • The address for your course mailing list is based on this format: [subject course number]-[section]-[term]
    For example:
  • When sending messages to your class mailing list, you need to be sending from your email address as it appears in the Penn directory. 
    If you try to send mail from some other email address (e.g. a personal GMail account), it will not be accepted.
  • Class mailing lists include all registered students, teachers, and TAs who have been added to the teaching staff through SRS. Auditors, guests, or TAs who are not listed in SRS will not be subscribed to the list, even if they have access to your Canvas site. Adding a guest to your Canvas site does NOT add them to the class mailing list.
  • You can add people to your class list and change settings through the Classlist Services page.


Canvas provides a number of options that will allow instructors, faculty, and TAs to continue instruction.

SAS is creating Canvas sites for all summer 2020 courses.  Log in at to see your Canvas site. If you do not see a Canvas site for your course, contact

If you are new to Canvas, begin with Getting Started with Canvas.

Canvas basics include:

  • Creating announcements
  • Posting readings and other files
  • Sending a message to your students through Canvas
  • Linking to external web sites
  • Creating assignments for online submission

If you already know the basics, consider moving to additional features

Zoom live class sessions and meetings

Record lectures or presentations using Panopto

It’s easy to record video lectures and share them with your students using the Panopto video system in Canvas.

  • Recordings can include:
    • your voice for narration
    • video from your webcam (optional)
    • Powerpoint slides, web pages, software demonstrations, or other activity on your computer screen
  • See the Quick-Start Guide and its supplemental video to use Panopto to create and post recordings.
  • See more detailed information about using Panopto to record and post presentations through Canvas.
    • Students can view recordings at any time through a link on Canvas and can watch them more than once.
    • For student questions or interaction about the content, set up a Canvas Discussion for each recording.