• Introduction
  • User interface
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Cost
  • Summary

NEO vs. Canvas


This page is a detailed comparison between NEO and Canvas, taking into consideration the features, functionality, and cost of each platform.

NEO is a world-class, award-winning learning management system (LMS) for schools and universities. NEO helps schools manage all classroom activities, such as creating and delivering educational content, assessing students, tracking their results, and promoting communication and collaboration between students and teachers/faculty.

Canvas is an learning management system for K-12 and Higher Ed institutions, owned by Instructure.

NEO School portal

User interface

The NEO interface provides attractive tile-based dashboards for administrators, teachers and students, including a graphical class catalog and a resources catalog. Canvas also has a graphical interface although the tile-based design is limited to classes. For example, the platform doesn't have a graphical catalog for storing and sharing resources, or a graphical users catalog.

NEO is easy to use and offers a simple pop-out navigation, with many shortcuts that limit the number of clicks needed to add or delete classes, sections, assignments, and more. Canvas is harder to navigate since there is limited pop-out functionality, especially at the dashboard level. For example, in NEO users can access important notifications and messages through a single drop down menu. In Canvas, users have to go to the main dashboard menu to click on their Inbox that loads another page to read their messages. If teachers want to delete multiple content pages or files, they have to click delete for each one of them as there is no option to delete all.

NEO makes it easy to create attractive classes and organize lessons into a graphical row or tile layout. Each tile displays important information such as the badges, points, and certificates that the lesson awards. What also makes the platform easy to use are the progress icons, that indicate a student’s progress through a class and lesson. The Canvas class layout is less attractive as it displays mostly text-based information about each lesson.

The NEO interface is 100% responsive and automatically adjusts based on the type of device. The Canvas mobile interface is not responsive and does not adjust according to the device. Users are recommended to install the Canvas apps to use the platform on their mobile devices and the mobile apps do not provide the full range of LMS features. NEO also offers branded apps for schools, while Canvas does not offer this option for their clients. At the same time, Canvas does not support a native app for Windows.

NEO Student dashboard

Ease of use

NEO is very intuitive and easy to use. In addition, it includes an online help center with videos, getting started guides, and searchable help content. NEO also has a rapid response support forum where staff members typically respond to questions within 15-30 minutes during business hours 24/5.

Canvas is easy to use. The company offers a help guide, a community and a support forum, and contact via phone for administrators.

NEO Help center


NEO and Canvas have a similar feature set, with the main difference being that NEO offers a larger feature set that help teachers save time and make learning more engaging for students such as automation, gamification and learning paths.

Creating content

Using NEO, teachers can create instructor-led, blended and self-paced classes, as well as micro classes. NEO also offers learning paths, which allow teachers to set up classes and certificates as learning goals that students must complete one by one.

Canvas offers instructor-led, blended and self-paced classes and does not provide a learning paths feature. In addition, NEO has more options for content creation, such as adding files or URLs as resources at the end of a content page.

Student assessment

In NEO teachers can choose from 12 types of assignments such as quizzes, essays, debates, team, Dropbox, Turnitin, discussion and survey. Canvas is missing assignment types such as essays and debates. The platform does not support point grading scales, does not have an easy way of exporting attendance data, and does not support printable attendance forms.

Tracking progress

NEO provides support for competency-based learning that allows teachers to track how well students are understanding the taught concepts based on their mastery of skills or subjects. Measuring student performance is easy and teachers can get instant insights using extensive analytics, built-in reports, and custom reports.

Canvas also has a mastery feature, but there is no option to trigger actions when students achieve certain mastery levels or drop below a threshold for a competency. Teachers can see analytics for mastery, lessons and assignments, but there are no custom reports.

Communication and collaboration

NEO offers many ways for teachers and students to communicate through chat, messages, groups, teams, social networking, wikis, blogs, and more.

Canvas also has many communication tools, but there are some limitations to their functionality. For example, NEO has community, school, private, and district-level groups. Canvas has class groups that limit users to class collaboration.

Personalization and engagement

NEO helps teachers save time through automation, which allows them to set up actions that should be performed when students complete tasks. Rules can be added in many areas of the platform such as classes, learning paths, groups, accounts, e-commerce, and mastery. NEO also has a powerful gamification feature, through which students earn points and badges, and they can also see a leaderboard with their results.

There is no automation feature available in Canvas and no support for gamification, only the option to award badges to students.


In NEO, schools can customize many aspects of the platform including its color scheme, fonts, terminology, and more. They can also create a visitor portal with their own logo, portal images, panels, carousel, custom HTML, and more.

To access similar features, Canvas users will have to pay extra for Canvas Catalog, an extension that allows them to showcase classes and sell their classes online.

Here is a list of the features included in NEO that are not supported by Canvas:

User interface

  • Automatic translation of messages and forum posts
  • Customizable terminology
  • Support for more than 40 languages
  • Windows native app
  • Branded mobile apps


  • Automation
  • Gamification
  • Micro learning
  • Learning paths
  • Drip content
  • Compliance
  • Class ratings and reviews
  • Printable certificates
  • Prerequisite certificates


  • Custom reports
  • Scheduled reports


  • Teams
  • Organizations
  • Public blog
  • Social networking


  • Integration with your own email server
  • Integration with 1,500+ apps via Zapier
  • xAPI
  • Skype for Business
  • GoToMeeting
  • GoToTraining
  • Zoom
  • CometChat
  • MailChimp
  • PayPal
  • Authorize.net
  • Stripe
  • PayUbiz
  • PayU Latam


  • Terms and conditions
  • Archiving students
  • SEO features

NEO Class catalog


NEO has a Free plan with a comprehensive set of essential LMS features and a Premium plan for schools that need more powerful functionalities. There are no setup fees, cancellation fees, storage fees, bandwidth fees, support fees, or other hidden costs.

We have heard anecdotally that Canvas requires an implementation fee of around $1,000 - 3,000 depending on the number of students. Support can also cost a school an extra of $2,000 - 3,000 per year. Depending on what your school needs, the costs can be even higher. For example, if you require e-commerce and a customizable portal to showcase classes you have to pay for the Canvas Catalog extension.

NEO Class page


This was a comparison of the most important features between NEO and Canvas.

NEO is a more powerful and intuitive LMS than Canvas offering a larger set of features that are suitable for both K-12 and Higher Ed institutions. NEO helps schools manage all classroom activities, such as creating and delivering educational content, assessing students, as well as features that make teaching easier and learning more engaging.

If you require additional information on NEO, please contact us.


This comparison paper was written in January 2019 based on publicly available documentation on both vendors' sites. It was prepared as a guide and is not intended to be exhaustive. The comparison information is for guidance only and does not constitute any contractual representation, warranty or obligation on our part. Liability for errors, omissions or consequential loss is expressly disclaimed.

Since pricing and features can change rapidly, we do not represent that this information is up-to-date, and we encourage you to get the latest information directly from the vendor's web site. If you find any information in this comparison guide to be inaccurate, please contact us with details and we will correct the information within 72hrs.