Canvas allows teachers to move section enrollments from individual courses and combine them into one course. This feature is helpful for instructors who teach several sections of the same course and only want to manage course data in one location. These combined courses can be set in the following ways:
- Open Sections: Students can communicate with and view student in other combined sections.
- Isolated Sections: Students can only communicate with and view students in their own section. To isolate your combined sections, send a request to email@example.com.
There are several FERPA considerations for combining sections in Canvas:
- Can I combine my sections?
- If you teach the sections as a single course, then they can be combined. For example, if you have multiple sections that work, collaborate, or attend lectures together (either in-person or online), they could be combined.
- Should I isolate my sections?
- Section visibility is an important option to help protect you from violating the Family Education Rights Privacy Act (FERPA). If course sections meet together and you would like students to communicate with each other, do not isolate your sections. If course sections do not meet together, we recommend isolating the sections to comply with FERPA. This setting affects all combined sections. To isolate your combined sections, send a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Can I isolate a single student in a combined course?
- Yes. If you would like to limit individual users in a section – as opposed to all students in a section – to only see users enrolled in the same section, follow the instructions at https://community.canvaslms.com/docs/DOC-13026.
- Can I combine a section I am teaching with a section taught by someone else?
- Sections can only be combined if they all have a common instructor. A section’s existing instructor can add additional instructors using the People tool. When adding users, be sure to select “Login ID” and enter the user’s GT Account (e.g. gburdell3). Once all sections have a common instructor, that instructor can combine the sections using this tool.
- What if I am unsure?
- If you are unsure whether it is appropriate to combine your sections – or whether to isolate your combined sections – contact the Registrars Office at https://registrar.gatech.edu/contact for guidance.
Please also review Georgia Tech’s policy and procedure for FERPA considerations when using Canvas at https://registrar.gatech.edu/info/optional-confidentiality-flags-student-records.
New Course Combining Tool: Built by Georgia Tech can be found in Canvas by following the instructions below.
- Login to Canvas
- Click “Account” at the top-left corner
- Click “Settings”
- Click “Combine Courses”
- Follow the instructions in the tool