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Bill01
Community Member

Past Canvas Course Retention

How long do canvas courses get saved past the end date of the course. I assume its probably different university to university but what's kind of the max end range that the school would be able to save it for viewing if I wanted to go back through old courses.

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chriscas
Community Champion

Hi @Bill01 ,

I'm not sure that there really is a maximum retention time, at least on the technical side of things.  My institution has been on Canvas since Summer 2013, and we still have all each and every course available from that point forward (but in read-only mode for everything prior to the current semester).  That being said, LMS retention policies do seem to be a new hot topic for higher-ed at least.  Having things from the past stilll be available is definitely nice, but at some point it does seem to become problematic.  Would there be a need to see 10 year old courses?  What about 15 year old courses, 20, etc?  Things do start to become cluttered, and if older things are never referenced it would likely be good to get rid of them at some point just to reduce storage (which Instructure is quite generous right now, but I wouldn't be surprised for that to change at some point).  It seems like we are starting to settle on something around a 6 year retention policy, which should be long enough for most undergrad students to have complete access to all of their courses until after they graduate, and also seems to satisfy most of our accreditation needs as far as we can tell right now.

Hope this helps!

-Chris