Unable to View Class' Annotations

Hi all,

I have been working with Annotation Studio in a class and I am running into a problem – I cannot see my students’ annotations and they cannot see mine.

I have looked through the forum for similar problems and have tried some of the suggestions I have found there – to no avail. I’ve checked the class and group names, used the side-bar to make sure I am viewing everyone’s annotations in the whole text, etc. but none of that has worked.

The document is here: http://app.annotationstudio.org/documents/a-report-on-my-husband

Looking at my students’ screens I can see that they have annotated the text and have checked the box to make them public, but I can’t seem to figure out what is going wrong.

Thanks in advance for any and all help!


Hi @cclavey,

While I can’t be certain, that document, and the annotations on it, do appear to be loading and rendering properly.

Note in the attached screenshot that I’ve opened the right hand side menu, and I’ve selected “All” (as you should be able to as the teacher), and “Whole document”, which are not the default settings for the filters when the document is loaded.

With those options selected, I see a good number of annotations. If you try those steps and still don’t see anything, I suspect either that the group name you’re using are in fact different while appearing the same (different puntuation, capitalization or whitespace), or that some annotators are not checking the box.

In any case, I will send you a full download of all of those annotations for your perusal, including the groups they were shared with.

Thanks, by the way, for checking other posts before adding this question – that’s most appreciated!



Hi @cclavey,

Our resident Annotation Studio whisperer, @Schnepper points out:

…the problem might be because [you have] two texts uploaded… with the title “A Report on my Husband,” and they are both assigned to the two Charles Classes. This is also the case with “Krushchev’s Secret Speech”.

It would make sense to ensure both groups are accessing the identical URL, and not two different ones.



Dear Jamie,

Thanks for your help, but I am still a bit in the weeds.

You’re right that when I put it on ‘All’ I can see the annotations in the document as a whole, so I know they are actually there. The problem is that the students – even when in the same group or in the same class – can’t see the other annotations. And, when I turn of ‘all’ and change the settings in the panel to ‘group’ or ‘class’ and ‘whole document,’ I can’t see them either. Now, I have had some of the students meet with me, so I have been able to look and I can confirm that they have made the annotations accessible to the group/class, so that is not the issue.

I tried making a new group called ‘Charles1’ because I suspect that the issue may be spacing inconsistencies in the group name. When I try it – logging in with a different account through a different browser – I am able to see the annotations I’ve made that way. Today I will see if this works for my students.

Also, I am not sure I understand @Schnepper 's point – I only see one version of the document. In fact, I have the same version assigned to both of my classes. Is there a better way to do this? Am I wrong in thinking I only have one version uploaded?

Anyway, thanks for your help. Hopefully some good news soon!


@Schnepper writes:

Dear Charles,

I do not think the issue is the spacing. If the students had entered in the name of the Class wrong, they would not have been able to see the document at all, let alone make any annotations on it.

I understand your frustration, and indeed I share it. I too cannot see their annotations under the Classes and Groups filters. However, I have just tested by making an annotation and made it public, and it filtered properly.

I strongly suspect that the students are not making their annotations public. Unfortunately, the only way to have them check and reset their annotations is individually. I would encourage your students to edit each of their annotations. They can do so by hovering over their annotations in the document, and then clicking on the pencil that appears in the upper right corner of their annotation. I have attached a screenshot of that. Please have them make sure that they are checking the public box at the bottom of the annotations. I have attached a second screenshot of that. Finally, they need to hit the Save button again.

This is a tedious thing to do, but hopefully if it works, it will solve the problem.


I would add another thought of my own: if your students added themselves to the group(s) in question after making those annotations, their annotations are not automatically reassigned to their new groups. One way to test if this is what’s causing the confusion would be to have your students simply open and save some of their annotations without making any other visible changes; this would have the effect of applying their new group settings to those annotations. If that makes a difference, as Rachel’s test would appear to suggest, they can go through their annotations one by one, open and save each, and that should solve the problem.



Dear Jamie and Rachel,

Thanks so much for your help. I will try and sort this out. One of the issues here is that this is also like herding cats.

I’ve been fiddling with annotations trying to work out the problem, but now I can’t seem to edit my annotations. When I hover over it, there is no longer thee option to make and shave changes.

Any ideas what is up here?

Again, a million thanks!


Sometimes it can be a bit tricky for users to find the edit/delete button. Hover over the highlighted text, and when the annotation box appears, move your mouse over that. It’s there, you just need to get used to the trick.

Dear Jamie and Schnepper,

Thanks so much for your help with this. You were absolutely right about the issue – it was user error in every case that I have seen so far.

You guys have a really cool product and now that we’ve used it once, I would be really excited to integrate it into my future classes.



Hi @cclavey,

Very glad to hear you’re getting the hang of Annotation Studio, and enjoying it!

It would be really helpful to us if we could hear a bit more from you about how you’re using it. Could we count on you to have a quick conversation with Rachel @Schnepper, who is managing our research and assessment effort?