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How do I edit user roles in a course?

How do I edit user roles in a course?

Once users have been added to your course, you may be able to edit the enrollment type for a user in the course through the People page. This feature allows you to make modifications to course enrollment types without having to delete the existing enrollment. Role edits do not require the user to accept a new course invitation.

If a user was added to the course with multiple roles, selecting a new role overwrites all the user's current enrollments with the new edited role. If a user is enrolled in multiple sections, the edited role applies to all sections.


  • If an observer is linked to a student, you cannot edit an observer role. Learn how to manage linked students.
  • Enrollments may be added by your institution's student information system (SIS). If an enrollment includes an SIS ID, you cannot edit an enrollment in the course. Additionally, editing a user role is a course permission. If you cannot edit user roles in your course, your institution has restricted this feature.

Open People

Open People

In Course Navigation, click the People link.

Locate User

In the search field [1], search for the name of the user. You can also filter users by role in the Roles drop-down menu [2].

Edit Role

Click the user's Options icon [1], then select the Edit Role link [2].

Edit Course Role

Edit Course Role

Click the Role drop-down menu [1], then select the new role for the user [2].

Note: Depending on your user permissions, you may not be able to select from all user roles in your course.

Edit Multiple Roles

Edit Multiple Roles

If a user has multiple roles in the course, selecting a new role overwrites all the user's current enrollments.

Update Role

Update Role

Click the Update button.


This does not help because the options link is not visible and nothing is bringing it into the frame.

Hi @paulas,

I'm not exactly sure why you cannot access the Options menu.  Are you using the most recent browser version? Is the course an active course in the current term? What role do you have in the course? I'm wondering if your school has restricted your permissions so you are unable to view these options.


A student is currently listed as an observer in my course. When I click on the three dots on the right side of their row the option "edit role" is not there. I am using the most up-to-date version.

Hi @Jared_P,

That's very strange! I took a quick peek at your courses and found a couple students that have both the student and observer roles, is that what you're referring to? If so, I'd recommend reaching out to Canvas Support to further troubleshoot this. 


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NOT your Canvas course.

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