Start of Term Checklist

A digital home for your students

Canvas offers a digital home for students who may be accessing your course from across campus or across the globe. This checklist will help you get your Canvas course ready for students.

Best Practices

Import Content or Template

Canvas creates a shell for every Registrar-enrolled section that a faculty member teaches. These shells are empty until content is imported into them. Faculty can either import content from previously taught courses or start fresh using one of the Northeastern Canvas templates.  

Import content 

Canvas templates 

Use Canvas homepage to welcome and orient students

A homepage for the course equips students with essential information about the course and where to get started.

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Add a syllabus to the course

The syllabus maps out the course communication plan and course deliverables. Linking it from the Syllabus area of each course makes it easy for students to access.

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Utilize Modules for course flow

The syllabus maps out the Modules provide an at-a-glance view of the activities for a given week or topic. They also create a linear flow for navigating through the week’s activities.

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Link course content through Canvas

Linking all files, videos, and library materials into Canvas modules helps students find course content and obtain an at-a-glance view of materials.



Create and grade assignments through Canvas

Assignments can be turned in via Canvas native assignments, quizzes, or integrated external tools. When you add due dates in your courses, they show on student calendars, which helps keep them on track.

Create Assignment

Add Due Dates

Include students who cannot join in person

Instructors can use Panopto, Teams, or Zoom to respond with flexibility to the needs of students who may be absent for illness or other reasons.

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Publish your course in Canvas

Publishing your courses by the start of the term helps students prepare and feel ready to learn. You can publish or unpublish entire modules or some items within modules.

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Communicate with students

Canvas is the central place to communicate with students about the course outside of course meetings, including sending announcements and messages.