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Give domain Canvas Admins the ability to mass publish classes

Give domain Canvas Admins the ability to mass publish classes


Domain admins need the ability to publish courses in mass, within our domains. The ability to publish in-mass will cut down on confusion for both instructors and students. It will also help admins when setting up blueprint course templates. 

Community Contributor

I completely agree. We're using Blueprint for Outcomes Assessment with our high school dual enrollment instructors. Despite giving them the instructions telling them to publish the course, many still don't and we cannot collect the data without a the course being published.  Going individually into HUNDREDS of courses to publish them is just not doable!

New Member

I assume Domain admin is sub-account admin?  Either way there is a great need for more bulk actions within canvas, its a area a lot of Admin have been commenting about recently.

Community Champion

I worry that an admin who has not designed the course, not created any content, and not even viewed what they are about to publish, might then publish a course to students prematurely.  That would create bigger problems for me as an instructor then needing to publish my own course might.

New Member

I voted for this idea, but the idea I logged in to file tonight is a bit different.

Our classes began this Monday. It was not until Tuesday afternoon - finally getting many student emails via my campus inbox, not Canvas - I realized I'd forgotten to "publish" my course. What's really ridiculous about current Canvas design in this area is - 

a) Though you have a Start Date set, the system gives no reminder when the course remains "unpublished" past that Start Date and time.

b) Then, you happily send a Welcome Announcement to all students the morning of the first day of class and it goes thru and archives as normal - no error messages whatsoever. Wonderful. Then, to your horror, you find it didn't actually get sent to anyone!

c) Your students who still can't see the course content nor have gotten any of the Announcements you've sent often can't contact you for being unable to access the Canvas "Inbox" (should be renamed "Messages" since it's both outbox and inbox). 

My "Feature Idea" was going to be - 

a) Start Date hasn't been set, course remains unpublished.

b) Start Date is set but that date-time hasn't arrived, course remains unpublished.

c) Start Date is set and it's past that date-time, course auto-publishes.

Could be so simple! And this issues causes some serious headaches, all for having an inconspicuous little "Publish" button and poor related systems design. Mass publishing by a Canvas admin might be even better from an institutional standpoint. Either that or something like the idea above should be implemented!

Community Champion

An option to set a date for auto-publishing is better than the potential for admins to bulk publish the courses, because when I set the auto-publish date I am also checking the course to make sure it is ready to publish.  A bulk publish risks someone prematurely publishing a course they have not seen.

New Member

This would be a good feature,  There is currently an endpoint to change the status of courses in bulk but could be complicated with pages of courses or create load if done on a schedule throughout the day.

There are two groups of admins that are affected by this type of change.  Those with access to a small scale of courses where it is important to check that each course is populated and ready for student access.  And those with a significant operation where blueprints are used to automate the movement of content and thus need the ability to mass publish all courses for a term at once on a set date.

My comment is geared to the second where we mass publish all the courses in a term at the same time.  This process couldn't be at the term level though since each school or campus may have different requirements on when students get access to the course such as online students getting access 5 days prior while resident students get access 30 days prior.

The idea of a publish on a date is intriguing with the notion much like the students start date the ability to change the state of the course on a specific date.  This would push all the calculation logic when that publication took place on the canvas servers.  This would be something we would also want the ability to set via the Course API or the SIS Import API.  A course notification could be sent to non-student enrollments informing users that the course will be auto-published on the given date a week or 2 weeks before the date.  Maybe even that could be configurable at the account level.

Another option would be to provide the ability to publish courses in batch via the SIS Import API, this would delegate the calculation logic of when the course should be published to the school systems which may or may not be possible in some cases due to the school's technical infrastructure or design.

No matter the format this is an important feature that would allow us in some way to ensure courses are published in time for students to have access to the course.

Community Team
Community Team
Comments from Instructure

Courses associated with a Blueprint course can be published as part of the initial Blueprint sync. This change allows admins to choose if they want to publish all associated courses as part of the sync process.

For more information, please read through the 

New Member

While that is true, it doesn't necessarily fit the requirements of the institution.  The content may be copied into the course weeks in advance but the course should only be published to students within a set period of time before the class starts. 

As I mentioned in my post, the ability to mass publish all courses on a specific date would go a long way to allowing the school administration to automate when courses are published for students.  Regardless of their use of blueprints.

New Member

Publishing hundreds of courses before a semester commencing date takes me (as an admin) a lot of time because I have to access each course and do it in the course homepage.

It would be much more convenient if we can do it by Blueprint course syncing or at least some button outside of the course homepage as below photo:


New Member

Why on Earth has this not been implemented? We really need to be able to mass publish/unpublish.