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Community Member

Why is there so much confusion over concluding a course?

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It seems to me that concluding a course basically "turns the course off".  No more notifications. Teachers/students can still look but not touch.  And that's about it. Right?

Can concluded courses be used to copy from or import from?

Just curious...

24 Replies
Learner II

So our setup is now like this:

We have the term dates themselves un-set.  They say whenever to whenever

  • We set the student end date to be the end of the next upcoming term (more on why not the current but the future term in a moment)
  • We set the instructor end date to be a few weeks after the end of the student's end date, again a full semester in the future
  • When instructors report a successful grade to our SIS when send back the message to complete their enrollment. If they have no grade sent or an Incomplete, they are kept in an active state
  • We have enabled the Restrict students from viewing after course end date option globally

So what this (I think) accomplishes for us is that our courses stay open because the term date does not conclude it and we do not conclude it via SIS. The students retain access, if they received an incomplete or no grade, to finish their work (our policy is they have until the end of the next term).  Students with a grade are set to completed and that in conjunction with the 'Restrict students from viewing after course end date' option prevents them from seeing the course at all after that date. They do not retain the read-only access.  The instructors retain access through the next term so they can a) deal with any incompletes and b) can keep full access so they can download student work, make changes, etc (which is what they expect they can do with course they 'own').  But then we complete even their access after the next term to help control the clutter on their Courses menu and in the Import from another course feature for example.  Then they go into read-only mode but because the course itself is not completed, they can still download student work, etc.

We have only had 2 semesters so I am not sure if there are gaps or issues I am not seeing yet.  Appreciate any thoughts and/or let me know if you have any questions.

Learner II

There seems to be confusion for us regarding the STATE of the course after it becomes soft concluded vs hard concluded.

We have default term dates that are set at the account level

Instructors may override these dates from within the settings menu if they wish

The confusion has been:

  • after the course becomes concluded after the default end of term date, what happens to the course. Are instructors able to have full access or was it only read only? How about students? Does it still show up in their list of courses or they have no access or read only?
  • If an instructor hard concludes (clicks the conclude button) what happens the access/state of the course?

We have since addressed these issues knowing that likely half the faculty will not be pleased and half will be.

Courses are now open to instructors with full access for 365 days after the last day of that course in Canvas.

As a student I have read only access to my courses for unlimited time

Then there are the complaints about the My courses list being way too long and courses that are finished instructors dont want to see those courses (or old converted WebCT courses). It has taken 2.5 years before we stopped hearing "where's my webct course content from 2 years ago, so it might be time we could consider to clean out the webct converted courses. That's a decision above me.

Many of you have mentioned about downloading assignments after a course has ended. Keep in mind that if a student is organized they may decide to clean out their personal files area and delete or move the submission file. If that's the case, you wont have a record of that.

Community Member

We've had one case where an instructor and coordinator of a program had over 500 courses listed, and the list simply would not load at all for him.  I had to go in and manually remove him from older courses before he could once again get into the system....:(


...the other issue also is we have some coorindators who assist programs/instructors to create and set up their courses. Since they put themselves in as instructors at the set up, Canvas wont allow them to be removed from the course. So that the only thing we could do was to conclude the enrolments. I believe that with sub accounts this could be avoided but this also was an issue at a point for us.

Learner II

Here is part of the reason it's so confusing: 

Basically, when you conclude a course, all the students disappear from the roster, but stay in the gradebook. If you UN-conclude a course, they also disappear from the gradebook. 

Luckily, if you add them back to the course by hand, their assignment and grade data is preserved. But what a pain in the neck - I'd assume if you unconclude a course, everything would automatically go back to the way it was before you concluded the course in the first place.