Technology Enhanced Learning at Sussex

Canvas Rollover

The checklist below will help you prepare the Canvas sites for your module for next academic year. If you would like any assistance please contact

First you should consider whether you wish to import (rollover) any module content to reuse from the previous year’s site. This process will bring across pages, files and activities and will duplicate the structure and navigation of the previous site.

Most Schools now have a module template to support consistency in students' experience. If you wish to apply a template, you should do this first, before copying your previous content into the new module. Our Canvas Template pages provide information and guidance on applying the templates. The Department of Education (ESW) does not currently have a template.

To import materials from a previous year in Canvas, whether or not you use a template, please follow the steps in this Guide to Module Rollover.

In Canvas you can choose which view you would like to set as the site home page. You can choose either the Units view (which is the default), the Syllabus view, the Assignments view, a display of the latest activity on the course, or you can use any of your Pages as the home page. If you are using a module template the home page will already be set for you.

If you want to change the module home page, follow the steps in A Guide to setting your home page.

The Module Menu that appears on the left of each site can also be customised so that you determine which menu items are visible to students and what order they appear in. This Guide to the Module Menu will help you identify which items you want to be visible to students. The Canvas Guide: How do I manage Course (Module) Navigation links? will show you how to make any changes.

Once you have imported any content from a previous Canvas module and/or a template you will need to check that the material is current for this year. Here are some things you will want to check and update:

  • Assignments. If you have imported material from a previous module you should have excluded Contributory E-submissions. This year’s e-submissions will be added automatically early in the academic year so there is no need to create any e-submission assignments yourself.
  • Broken links. There may be web links that are no longer working. Canvas will check this for you - see How do I validate links in a course (module)? 
  • Dates. If you have added dates and times for sessions, office hours etc. these may need updating.
  • Information in template pages. If there are gaps for adding module documents, tutor contact details etc. don’t forget to fill these in and link to any relevant files. For more on how to edit a Page see How do I edit a page in a course (module)? 
  • Module image. You may want to change the image that appears on the module ‘card’ on the Dashboard. See How do I add an image to a course (module) card in the Dashboard? 
  • Online Reading List. If you use the Talis Aspire reading lists, you will need to update the reading list links for the new academic year. When you have published the new year's list, follow the Library’s guide to linking your reading list to your Canvas module. For help with creating, editing and publishing reading lists please see the Library help pages or contact

Digital Accessibility is about ensuring the online learning environment and resources are usable for all students and staff, including those with disabilities and specific learning differences. In order to meet the legislation requirements and provide an improved learning environment for all, follow the guidance available on the Technology Enhanced Learning Digital Accessibility pages.

First check the accessibility of existing documents and resources, then use the Create pages to update your existing content to make it accessible or to create new accessible documents and resources.


Check the accessibility of existing documents and resources


Create new accessible documents and resources or update existing content

The last step is to make your module site visible to students. Before you do that it is worth checking that the Units and Items within your module that you want students to see have also been published. In this example the Unit is unpublished so students will not see any of the items within it.

An example of an unpublished Unit within a Canvas module.

When you publish the Unit (by clicking the ‘no entry’ icon at the top of the unit) any published items within the Unit will become visible.

Now you are ready to make your module site visible to students. To do this, go to Home and on the right of the screen you will see Module status. Click the Publish button, which will then turn green and show the status as Published.

An example of a Canvas module that is currently unpublished.An unpublished module

An example of a Canvas module that is currently published.A published module

Standalone Canvas sites

Standalone sites are sites that are manually created and are not attached to a module code. To request a 19/20 standalone site please send details via this form: Request a 19/20 standalone Canvas site.

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