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Surveyor II

Unlock exam based on enrollment date?


We are setting up our school in Canvas, actually transferring it from another LMS. We are an online-only, rolling enrollment, asynchronous, self-paced school, which means we enroll students in courses as they join. This means some students will advance through courses faster than others. We do however, set a minimum amount of time at which point the final exam is available to the student. For our full courses we have the final exam lock set to 60 days from course enrollment. This encourages the student to work at a reasonable pace to absorb the course information and prepare for their final exam. It's been working well in our current LMS, we are moving to Canvas for other reasons.

Does Canvas have a feature similar to this? Can the final exam in a course be set to automatically unlock and be available to the student 60 days after the date of their enrollment? For instance, could the exam access code automatically trigger after 60 days of enrollment?

5 Replies
Community Coach
Community Coach

 @rulven ​, I'm going to share this with the Canvas Developers​ and Canvas Admins​ Groups in the Community to see if they can help, but I'm pretty sure this isn't possible in Canvas.

The only way to assign different due dates for every students for the same assignment is using the differentiated assignment feature/tool -What do Differentiated Assignments look like in Canvas? - and as far as I'm aware there isn't a good way (or even any way?) programmatically (automatically) to set-up assignments using this tool.

In addition I did a quick search in the Community and found the following discussion - Re: Due Dates on Assignments for Students Added Mid-Term - that is related to rolling due dates. I also found the request for a Canvas group that would focus on this type of enrollment - - and might be a good place to connect with similar Institutions & people dealing with similar issues.

Hope this helps!

Hi Kona,

Thanks for your reply. In our other LMS, about a year ago they added a feature called "drip content" and also time-based locks related to assignments. This enabled chapters(modules) to be set to unlock after a span of time. We just used a time-based lock on our final exams. We have decided to leave our current LMS because of problems with reliability with students losing their entire exam if their internet connection was interrupted.

I appreciate you sharing this with other admins. It would mean a great deal to our school to see if a solution is possible. In the meantime, we may just have to set a 60 day calendar reminder upon each student enrollment to send them the access code to the exam.


Community Team
Community Team

While we'll leave this question open for now (just in case one of the brilliant minds over at Canvas Developers can figure this out), I want to call everyone's attention to the feature idea  @rulven ​ created for this potential capability:    It's currently open for voting.

Community Coach
Community Coach

 @rulven ​,

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.


Hi Robbie,

Our in-house developer is currently working on a coding solution to this issue. I think we'll be okay on our end, thanks.