Canvas Course Availability Timeline

This guide is intended for faculty to follow the recommended timeline for their Canvas course availability.

45 Days Before the Semester Begins

"When can I begin to build my course in Canvas?"

The Canvas site becomes available to faculty 45 days before the class start date. The course will be available on their Canvas dashboard. Access Canvas through OneLogin
If you need a Canvas site before then, request a Playground through


1 Week Before the Semester Begins (Recommended)

"When should I make the course available to students?"

One week before the class start date, faculty complete their course content design and publishes the Canvas site. Use Canvas Announcements and WJC email to notify students when the Canvas site is available. Make sure to have navigation instructions on your course home page.

If you would like students to complete an activity within Canvas prior to the start date of the semester, such as an introduction discussion post, you have to change the start date of your course.  As a reminder, we extend access for two weeks following the last day of the class for students to gather necessary materials from the course. If you adjust your course dates, please set the end date to be two weeks after the class end date.


2 Weeks After the Class End Date

"How long will the Canvas site be visible to students?"

Two weeks after the class end date, the Canvas site is no longer visible to students. Make sure to notify students either on the home page of your course or the syllabus with the following:

"The Canvas course access ends two weeks after the semester ends. If you wish to keep any content from the Canvas site, make sure to save it before you no longer have access. If you wish to access content after this date, have your faculty email with authorization to let you access what course and for how long."


What about incompletes?

If a student has an incomplete, send an email to with the name of the course, name of the student, and the extension date they need access through.


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