CANVAS Parent Instruction

Parents can sign up as an observer in Canvas by linking their account to their student’s account by logging in as an observer.

Parents, login to Canvas or use the “Canvas Parent” app (iOS and Android download link) to see your student’s due dates, announcements, and other course content.

Observers can view course content but cannot participate in the course.

To participate as an observer/parent, please use a Chrome/Safari/Firefox browser and follow the instructions below.

1. In a browser window enter 
2. Click on “Parent of Canvas User?” link in the top right of the login screen
3. Enter Signup Details
  • Enter the required information
  • Note: Your child’s Student Pairing Code is case sensitive. See step 4 below for directions to generate a pairing code. This code can be found with your student when they log into CANVAS themselves, go to their Profile SETTINGS and tap PAIR WITH OBSERVER.
  • Click the Start Participating button
4. Student Pairing Code Directions
  • Have your child go to their Canvas Dashboard by logging in to
  • Click on the “Account” icon
  • Go to “Settings” then select “Pair with Observer” on the right side of the page to get the case-sensitive pairing code
5. You are now logged into Canvas as a Parent/Observer. 
You can also download the iOS and Android “Canvas Parent” app and login with your observer/parent credentials
6. Logging in via QR code from the iOS and Android App. 
After installing the the iOS and Android “Canvas Parent” app, you can login via QR code from your observer/parent account. Since CDS is using Single Sign On for our students, parents can only log into the mobile app using QR code. IMPORTANT: Please follow instructions below!


  1. Log into Canvas on your computer’s Chrome/Safari/Firefox browser as a parent/observer by going to:
  2. Click the “Account” icon
  3. Click the “QR for Mobile Login” link
  4. Click “proceed” to see the QR code


  1. Open the iOS or Android “Canvas Parent” app
  2. Click the QR login link and click Next
  3. Scan the QR code on your computer
  4. You are now logged in as a Parent/Observer on your mobile “Canvas Parent” app

Canvas Parent Notification settings

  1. Log into Canvas on your computer’s Chrome/Safari/Firefox browser as a parent/observer by going to:
  2. Click on Account (profile photo) in the top left. 
  3. Go into Notifications in that menu.
  4. You can toggle notifications types in this page.
    From left to right for each type, it’s “Immediate,” “Daily Summary,” “Weekly Summary,” or “Never.”

    TIP: For students or parents/guardians, the only immediate notifications I suggest are Inbox Conversations or Submission Comments so you can talk with one another regularly. Everything else is personal preference