Canvas End of Semester / Term

The following will help instructors understand how the end of semester is handled in Canvas, and how to update related Canvas course settings if necessary. Everything below applies to typical term-based Canvas classes. Canvas sandbox classes and Canvas shells used for organizations, departments, groups, etc. are not tied to any particular terms and thus remain available indefinitely.

Closing your Course

There is nothing you need to do to close your Canvas course; at the term end date (see below), your course will be set to Concluded status and moved onto the Past Enrollments course list for you and your students. By default you and your students will continue to have read-only access to the course.

For both instructors and students, concluded courses can be found under Courses > View All Courses > Past Enrollments.

Canvas Term End Dates

SemesterDateTime
Fall 2017Dec 3112 am
Spring 2018June 212 am
Summer 2018August 11 12 am

Concluded Course Access for Instructors

Instructors can perform the following actions with a concluded course

Instructors cannot perform the following actions within a concluded courses (and should be done prior to the end of the term)

  • Edit course content
  • Edit Grades
  • View/download Analytics
  • View/download Item Analysis within Quizzes
  • Send a message to the class within Canvas

Concluded Course Access for Students

Students can perform the following actions by default within a concluded course.

  • View Grades
  • View course content
  • View Discussions and Assignments
  • Send a message to the instructor

Students cannot perform the following actions within a concluded course.

  • View Quiz questions and answers
  • Submit discussions, assignments, quizzes, and other course activities

Resolving Incompletes

If you have assigned a student an incomplete ‘I‘ grade for the semester contact Karen Turpin at kturpin@miracosta.edu or 760-795-6787 as soon as the paperwork is complete with Admissions and Records. Karen will create a new Canvas course section based on the original course.  This new section will allow the student access to the course with the ability to submit work, and will give you access to grade the student’s work, for the time allowable by the Office of Admissions and Records.

Teaching a short course and/or need to close your course prior to the official term end date?

You can manually end your course by updating the course end date.

To change the Course Start and/or End Date

  1. Click on Settings in the Canvas course menu
  2. Change the Course Start and End Dates to reflect when you want students to have full access to the course.
  3. Select the checkbox for Users can only participate in this course between these dates.
  4. Click the Update Course Details button.

In the example below, students will not be able to access the course, even if it is published, until Jan 16 at 12 am. The students will no longer be able to participate in the course after May 30  at 5 pm and the course will be visible to students in the ‘Past Enrollments’ list by clicking on Courses, then All Courses.

Start / End Term Canvas Dates

  • Note: If you select a course end date prior to the official end of term date, but do not check the box Users can only participate in this course between these dates, students will still be able to actively participate in the course until the official Canvas end of term (as shown in the table above).

Restricting Students from Viewing a Completed Course

As described above, by default in Canvas, students have ongoing read-only access to course content in Canvas after the term ends. If an instructor wishes to limit this access, follow one of the methods below.

Method 1: Hide Navigation Menu Links

If an instructor would like to limit access to course content, one method is to hide the Navigation menu links. It is important to note that if the Navigation menu links are hidden, the instructor will also be unable to access them after the course concludes (end of term). This may be appropriate if you would like to leave Grades available to students, yet close off course content and/or modules. The instructor may copy the course into another course to gain access to the menu items that are hidden.

How to Hide Menu Navigation links

  1. Click Settings in the Canvas course menu
  2. Click Navigation in the tabs at the top.
  3. Drag and drop the menu items from the top (viewable) area to the bottom (hidden) area or click the gear icon to the right of the menu item and select disable.
  4. Click the Save button.

Method 2: Restrict students from viewing course after end date

If an instructor would prefer the entire course and its course materials not be visible to students after the course end date:

  1. Click Settings in the Canvas course menu
  2. Select the checkbox for ‘Restrict students from viewing course after end date’Restrict past end date
  3. Click the Update Course Details button.

This option will completely remove the course from the student’s view in Past Enrollments. Students will not see the course and will have no access to course materials or grades. Instructors will continue to be able to access the course in Past Enrollments.