How do I validate links in a course?

Document created by Canvas Doc Team Employee on Oct 7, 2017Last modified by Canvas Doc Team Employee on Aug 17, 2019
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As an instructor, you can verify all external links throughout your course to ensure they are valid. You can check these links using the course link validator, which searches through course content and returns invalid or unresponsive external links in both published and unpublished content. However, please note that some links flagged as unresponsive are inaccessible by Canvas servers and will still work for students.

The link validator also includes deleted links. Deleted links are links that are still in the course, but their linked content has been deleted (such as a course file or page).

Note: The link validator does not validate mailto (email address) links.

Open Settings

Open Settings

In Course Navigation, click the Settings link.

Open Validation Link

Open Validation Link

In the sidebar, click the Validate Links in Content link.

Start Link Validation

Start Link Validation

Click the Start Link Validation button.

View Links

View Links

If any links are found in the course, Canvas displays the number of links [1], followed by the name of the content item and the content's associated invalid link(s) [2].

View Unpublished Content

View Unpublished Content

By default, the Show links to unpublished content checkbox is selected [1]. The page will display any broken links in unpublished content [2].

View Broken Link Details

View Broken Link Details

The validator displays broken links and images by item type [1].  Broken content is identified as either a link or an image [2]. Non-existent content means that the object is invalid and should be replaced [3]. Unreachable objects mean the image could not be displayed [4].

Note: Course Cards are a supported object type. Any deleted course image added from Flickr displays as an invalid image.

Update Links

Update Links

To update links within course content, click the name of the content item [1].

After you update your content, you can validate your links again by returning to the Link Validator page and clicking the Restart Link Validation button [2].

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