How do I format text with Markdown in the Rich Content Editor?

When using the Rich Content Editor to add content in Canvas, you can use the Markdown plugin to format text.

Tip: If you are unfamiliar with Markdown formatting, you can find information in the Wikipedia article on Markdown (opens new window).

Go to the page where you will enter the text.

The Rich Content Editor is available on most pages in Canvas where text can be added. For example, you may use the editor to create a page in Modules, create or submit an assignment, or make a discussion post.

Pictured above is where an instructor can find the Edit button on a course Welcome page to add text to that page.

Go to the Rich Content Editor.

Navigate to the editor where you will be adding the text.

Select Apps.

Select the Apps button in the editor's toolbar. The button looks like a plug on an electrical cord.

Note: If the Apps button does not appear in the editor's toolbar, you can find it under the More (three dots) menu at the far right end of the toolbar.

Select View All.

If you have used any external tools (e.g., Embed Kaltura Media, Insert Special Character, or Microsoft OneDrive) to add content in the Rich Content Editor, up to five recently-used tools will display by default in your Apps menu.

Underneath the list of tools (if any appear in the menu), select View All.

Tip: If you have recently used the Markdown plugin, you can select it from the list of tools in the Apps menu. Skip to the step to enter text.

Select Markdown.

In the All Apps window, select Markdown.

Tip: On a small screen, you can use the Search box to find the plugin without scrolling in the window.

Enter text.

In the Markdown window, enter text with Markdown formatting.  Pictured above is an example where the following text has been entered:

Welcome to the _2023 Spring_ **Online Media** course! To get started, please review the _Syllabus_.

Tip: For instructions to format text, see the Markdown Guide - Basic Syntax (opens new window).

Preview text. (Optional)

  1. You may select the Preview button in the lower-left corner of the Markdown window to preview your formatted text.
  2. The formatted text will display in a preview pane that covers the left side of the Markdown window. Select the Close (X) button to exit the preview.

Select Update.

In the lower-right corner of the Markdown window, select the Update button.

View text in the editor.

The text you entered will appear with the appropriate formatting in the Rich Content Editor. The example text mentioned in the step above displays as follows:

Welcome to the 2023 Spring Online Media course! To get started, please review the Syllabus.