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How should I manage a semester based course with study groups?


I am very new to Canvas and I have a question about structuring/organizing a semester based course we offer. What do you find the best way to do this is with Canvas? I know a lot of schools do it differently, but I am trying to find the cleanest way to organize our semester-based courses.

Our current process is to copy the previous semester to create the current semester. We then create Sections to organize our students into "study groups" with a different professor for each Section. We do this because we have 2 assignments that students have to participate in with their group, and different professors grade each group throughout the course.

The desire is to have 1 course hold all the content, then within that course have semesters that are further broken down into "groups" that are run by professors. This would allow me to create specific assignment times/dates for the groups (which is why we currently use sections), but not have to copy the course each semester.

We really want to get to the point where we don't need to copy our course each semester, partly because that saves time, and partly because the number of courses in our account is growing. I was initially thinking of using Sections as my "semesters" and then using Groups to split the students into their study groups. Essentially using the hierarchy here (How are courses and sections related?​), but adding Groups under Sections, then Students under Groups.

But I also just found out about cross-listing (Understanding Courses and Sections ), and am wondering if that will be a better way of organizing my course.

I hope this makes sense, please let me know if I need to clarify something! I am having trouble wrapping my mind around the best way to do this and any advice you have would be much appreciated!!

Thank you!


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Coach Emeritus


We are giving the Instructional Designers area a little bit of love and just want to check in with you.  This will also bring this question new attention. 

I apologize for your questions sitting in the community so long without a response.  It looks like you have stumped the Canvas Community.


Were you able to find an answer to your question? I am going to go ahead and mark this question as answered because there hasn't been any more activity in a while so I assume that you have the information that you need. If you still have a question about this or if you have information that you would like to share with the community, by all means, please do come back and leave a comment.  Also, if this question has been answered by one of the previous replies, please feel free to mark that answer as correct.



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