How does ctcLink affect instructor access to Canvas shells?

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Amy Kinsel
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ctcLink and Canvas 

Before the start of each quarter, Canvas shells are automatically created for each class section that has been scheduled in ctcLink.

If you do not see a Canvas shell for a class section you are scheduled to teach:

  • Check to be sure the class is visible on your ctcLink My Schedule page. If you do not see the class on your ctcLink My Schedule page, contact your division administrative assistant or department program coordinator with details about the class section(s) you are scheduled to teach and the fact that you do not see the section(s) in ctcLink.
  • If the class section is visible in ctcLink but you do not see a Canvas shell for the class, contact eLearning by submitting a request for help through Canvas and Online Learning section of the Shoreline Support Center. Send a copy of your request for eLearning support to your division administrative assistant or department program coordinator.

Instructor Access to Canvas Shells

Canvas shells are attached to class sections rather than instructors. A change in instructor for a class section will result in a change in instructor access to the Canvas shell attached to the class section. 

Unlike in the legacy (HP) system, instructor changes in ctcLink take place immediately in the class schedule and in Canvas. 

This means that if there is a change to the instructor of a class section before the quarter starts, the instructor’s name in both the class schedule and the attached Canvas shell will immediately be replaced by the name of the new instructor.

The previous instructor will then immediately lose access to the Canvas shell and to any instructional content already loaded into the Canvas shell.

To avoid losing access to your Canvas content, consider building your instructional content in a separate instructor-created Canvas course that cannot be reassigned.

Use an Instructor-Created Canvas Shell to Build Course Content

1. In the lower right corner of your Canvas dashboard, you will find a button to Start a New Course.


2. When you click on the button, you’ll be prompted to enter a name for your new course.


3. Enter a name for your course and click on the Create button. The new course will open.

4. Build your course content in an instructor-created Canvas shell and then copy it to the live Canvas classroom shortly before the quarter starts. This will avoid the risk of your losing access to your course content should instructor teaching assignments change before the quarter begins.

Merging Canvas Shells for Combined Sections

1. In ctcLink, separate sections of a class or classes can be combined in the class schedule. In the online class schedule, combined sections are noted at the bottom of the class information, as in this screen shot of information for the dual-listed course CJ137/SOC137:


2. Canvas shells for class sections that are combined in the class schedule can be merged in Canvas. If you are teaching a class that combines two or more sections, you can request that the Canvas shells for your class be merged in preparation for copying course content from your instructor-generated shell to the live Canvas shell just before classes begin. 

Canvas Cross List Merge Request

3. Canvas shells for class sections that are not combined in the class schedule, e.g., two separate sections of the same class that are being taught by the same instructor, are ineligible for merging under FERPA.

Can I merge two sections in a Canvas course?





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