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Blueprint: Make Modules lockable

Blueprint: Make Modules lockable


Currently, the behavior of Modules within Blueprint courses is unclear and is inconsistent with other aspects of Blueprint courses. Unlike other content elements in Blueprint (pages, assignments, files, discussions, and quizzes), you cannot specify any locked attributes of Modules. Documentation (How do I sync course content in a blueprint course in an account?) indicates that:

"If the blueprint course includes Modules, associated courses match the modules structure initially created in the blueprint courses. However, any additional modules and their content added to the blueprint course will always be added to the bottom of the Modules page in the associated courses."

However, this does not explain whether changes are possible to Modules made within a Blueprint. Because Modules are not lockable, the content of Modules can be changed (deleted or moved) within an associated course. However, our testing and observations indicate that upon course sync Modules (usually, if there are locked items within those modules) reset to the content and order that appears in the Module in the Blueprint. We have some anomalous behavior that makes using Modules in Blueprint courses potentially problematic:

This is problematic for several reasons:

  • In associated courses where assignments have different due dates, instructors may want assignments with locked content (but unlocked due dates) to appear in a specific order within the modules in the associated sites. Currently this does not work.
  • If an instructor adds a learning object (file, page, assignment, etc.) to a Module that was created in a Blueprint course, the added element usually is placed at the top of the Module after a course sync. This location may not make sense to learners participating in a course.
  • The current workaround -- creating modules within associated courses (rather than within a Blueprint) -- reduces the time savings and consistency of course experience offered by Blueprint.

To address these issues, we would like to see Modules made lockable with the following options:

  • Content
  • Order of content within modules
  • Order of modules
  • Requirements
  • Mastery Paths

Adding these options would clarify the expected behavior of Modules with Blueprint and align the lockable attributes with other content elements. And as Modules are not the default home page in Canvas, better and clearer support for Modules in Blueprint courses is critical.

Community Contributor

I'm just starting to examine blueprint courses and the sync process, and this kind of control is very necessary. I see that if I change an element of locked content in the blueprint, I can push a sync. However, if someone deletes a module containing locked content or removes that locked content from a module, I don't see how to cause a sync to rebuild the module back into the course.

Community Contributor

It also appears that Mastery Paths will not copy correctly from the Blueprint Master because of this issue.  As we roll out Blueprint for an institution with thousands of courses spawned from Blueprint, we must ensure that settings such as MP or other coniditional release settings are honored in the BluePrint sync.

Community Contributor

This would be much helpful for us and would lead to us adopting blueprint sooner rather than later.

New Member

I currently have 23 courses associated with a blueprint course. Syncing the blueprint course shuffles my module content (for example, the intro page for each module gets moved to the middle of the module). It takes me 45min to re-sequence the content into the correct order, which basically negates any of the benefits that I expected to incur from having a blueprint course. This is such bad design that I will not be a Canvas "promoter" until it is fixed.

New Member

Any further progress on this? I realise this is an old request but I've just bumped into the same issue myself. It seems crazy that modules are handled so wildly different in the syncing process. If you have a module-heavy course, it almost makes Blueprints worthless to use. I'd be very curious to learn what the thinking was from a design perspective, or if this is software limitation. Either way, a fix would reduce the stress levels of many a teacher (and sys-admins!). 

New Member

I am especially interested in the date/gating functionality. I have a blueprint feeding into various children courses with different assignment deadlines and module gating dates. Each time I sync modules that have content that has been edited are reset to ungate on the date in the blueprint. I have confirmed this behavior is expected with Canvas support. 

I am also finding that in a blueprint course with LTI content from Cengage, all “Cengage modules” are reset to the blueprint ungate dates every time I sync, regardless of whether or not they have been edited. 

New Member

I am interested in this request also.  I've run into the problem of having module order messed up after syncing.  Also, if the module gets deleted (which can be done since we can't lock modules), that's a problem that can't be fixed by syncing again.

Community Participant

How has this not been fixed? A key feature of Canvas are the blueprints, modules and learning paths. Modules coming to a child course from a blueprint often are shuffled all over the place.

How long will this remain broken? Please encourage everybody to put in a help ticket every time that the module comes through incorrectly and needs to be resorted. Also be sure to upvote this feature!

I love Canvas but this is absolutely mind-boggling and super frustrating. 

Community Participant

Three-and-a-half years later, and no comments from Instructure on this.

I've just started using a Blueprint course and I keep getting notified that modules and assignment groups are "unlocked" when I go to sync them. So the system is warning me that they are unlocked, but I am not provided with any way to remedy that.

I have to say, I've come to expect "aberrant" behavior as the norm with Canvas. 😕

Community Member

The lack of complete module sync support in BP (order of items, etc.) really makes BPs an incomplete feature, especially as much ID work in Canvas leans toward driving the student experience using Modules, i.e., removing elements for students from course nav, like "files" and "pages," that lead to a scattershot UX.

Community Participant

Please fix this issue. going into every associated course is driving me crazy. 

Community Participant

I managed to force the module order sync adventuralyy. Just synced 3 times but changing the names of a few modules (adding a space). 

Community Participant

What do you mean Mr. Iowea? I can't believe that this feature still doesn't work correctly. I had departments FURIOUS that they had so much sorting work reset.  

Please comment if you see this issue where you work as well. 

Community Participant

Eventually, I managed to get the modules to sync in the right order.  I changed page names within some of the modules to force through a sync each time. The fourth time I tried all the modules appeared in the right order on the child courses. 


It is an asoloute pain. 

Community Participant

When I put pages in a certain order in a blueprint template course and sync that course with the associated courses, the pages are not in the correct order. This is a major issue with Blueprint that has been going on for 4+ years now and it still hasn't been resolved. 

Community Participant

I love Canvas and the tools it provides teachers with to engage and assess students, but that this issue hasn't even been acknowledged is wild. I've had so many angry and disappointed emails! When something foundational like this doesn't work well it makes other components harder to sell to my staff. "I'm sure this won't work either" type comments becomes the norm. 

Please fix over the summer.