Start of Semester Checklist

Best Practices for your Canvas Course

Canvas logo with red circle and red Canvas lettering

This checklist is a starting point to ensure your course is ready for student access and engagement prior to the start of a new term. Use this tool as a starting point to ready yourself and your course.

[ ]  Create or Import Your Content

You may need to manually add content or import content from another course, previous term, or the Canvas Commons.

[ ] Choose your Course Home Page

The course home page is the first impression your students will have of your course. Choose the display option that best fits the needs of your course.

The longer you use a course shell and the weblinks inside of it, the greater the chance that those links will stop working. Use the link validator tool to check for inactive links, and update as needed.

[ ] Customize Course Navigation

For better student engagement, customize the course navigation with only the tools you will use during the semester.

[ ] Update Course Card Image

The course card image is what students (and you!) see on the Canvas Dashboard. Update this image to reflect the course you are teaching.

[ ] Set Start Date

Double check the start date of your course in the Canvas course settings, and adjust as necessary.

[ ] Review Course in Student View

Want to experience your course as your students do to make sure everything is working properly? Enter student view and have a look around!

Before the term starts (and during the first couple weeks), it's a great idea to cross reference your Canvas and Banner rosters.

[ ] Publish Your Course (and Content!)

Your students cannot see your course (or course content) if it's not published. Don't forget this very important step!

For additional help or support with Canvas, please contact your College Innovation/Distance Learning Centers.

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