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New Member

Course start and end dates

Canvas 101 question follows.  Apart from student participation in a course, what impact do course start and end dates have?  I ask because we have a business rule that all courses imported into Canvas from our CRM must have the start and end date fields populated.  At this stage the only effect it seems to be having is the date that students can access the course if it is published, and the date that the course automatically becomes read only.  From my research so far, it does not impact on anything else - due dates, calendar dates etc.  It is just student participation access, and the 'state' of the course.

I ask because we are considering removing these dates from the import process, and leaving them blank, but I want to understand what impact this may have first.  Please enlighten me.

3 Replies
Community Coach
Community Coach

We use start and end dates for providing working access to students, that's pretty much it. If you leave these blank then students could come in and out at any time and work on content and view all previous course content. If you're thinking about relying on assignment start, until, and due dates I'd say that it's a pain to set and change all of these (normally I only use the due date) and that the until date doesn't prevent students from going back and viewing all quiz questions/information, etc.


 @k_ryall ‌, have you had a look at How do I use term dates, course dates, and section dates in Canvas? It has a link to a PDF that has more detail and even describes various scenarios. I could swear someone made a nice table of this data as well but I haven't found that yet. Still looking...

I found it! Have a look at the attached PDF from  @sphinney ‌'s comment in this thread: