Canvas Crosslisted, Merged, Multi Section, Stacked Courses

What is Crosslisting in Canvas?

There are multiple terms that might be used when requesting that a course be grouped in Canvas. These are the most common: Multi Section Course, Crosslisted Course, Merged Course, and Stacked Course. While these terms may stand for different types of courses the process of technically merging the courses within Canvas is the same process for all of these different types.

Having a crosslisted course within Canvas means that two or more Canvas course sections will be put into one single course shell so that multiple course sections can be managed from one place. This is helpful to Instructors by allowing them to change or create material in one place which reduces the amount of time they may spend copying or keeping track of different course materials. Often this method is used when an Instructor is teaching more than one course that is exactly the same as another.

Sometimes departments might also use cross listed courses as a way to have two different classes with separate Instructors working together. For example, a History class may work in tandem with an Essay writing course and the students are interacting with both course sections at the same time.

In all cases, the students will see the course within Canvas as the course that they are registered for. The Instructors will see the course in Canvas with the word "Multi Section" in the title.

Registrar's Office Course "Grouping" Definitions

The Office of the Registrar has two methods for creating combined courses in Canvas.  

  1. Curriculum-approved cross-listed courses 

    • Why? To combine courses together per the University's official process to create equivalent courses between academic departments. Cross-listed Courses are approved by the official curriculum process.

    • How? Once approved via the official curriculum process, the department class schedule coordinators request cross-listing in Banner by the Registrar’s Office. Cross-listed courses are reported on the department information spreadsheet as part of the standard call-for-schedule process that generates the class schedule for each semester.

    • What? This creates a “multi-section course” in Canvas following processing by the Registrar’s Office. Note: this does not affect the Banner CRN listings for the course. Faculty will still need to submit final grades for students based upon the CRNs.

  2. Grouped Course:

    • Why? To combine courses together for the purpose of a single course experience for students in multiple banner course sections. Courses that are taught by the same faculty member for a particular semester fall into this category, which may include one or more of the following types of courses: different level, course number, days/times, instructional method.

    • How? Faculty member requests their department class schedule coordinator to email regscheduling@msudenver.eduand request to have the sections grouped. Once that request is received and processed by the Registrar’s Office, the Canvas multi-section course is automatically generated. Instructors should move all content to the sandbox or saved and downloaded before requesting a grouping. 

    • What? This creates a “multi-section course” in Canvas following processing by the Registrar’s Office. Note: this does not affect the Banner CRN listings for the course. Faculty will still need to submit final grades for students based upon the CRNs.

Who can request Crosslisted, Merged, Multi-Section Courses in Canvas?

Department Course Coordinators, Faculty, Chairs, and Deans can request courses to be grouped in Canvas through the Office of the Registrar. 

How do they request a course to be grouped in Canvas?

Faculty and Staff should reach out to their departments class schedule coordinator to make this request. We recommend that this process be done before a semester begins to avoid issues. However, it is up to the department if they want to allow these changes to be made after the semester begins.

The department's class schedule coordinator will work with the Registrars Office to create the crosslisting in Banner. Courses will be automatically merged in Canvas within one hour after they have been cross-listed in Banner by the Office of the Registrar.

IMPORTANT! We recommend that crosslisted courses should not be requested if the students have already engaged in regular activity within the current Canvas courses as all of the student data will be lost in this process. This will include attendance, submissions, quiz data, grades, log data and all activity records.

IMPORTANT! Any current course content within the course sections that will be crosslisted will be overwritten. We recommend that instructors copy any material they want to keep into a Sandbox course before they make the request with their department. This way they can access the material and copy it from the Sandbox into the Multi Sectional course when it the process is finalized.

How do they access a Multi-Section course in Canvas?

Courses will be automatically merged in Canvas within one hour of when they have been grouped in Banner by the Office of the Registrar . The new course will show up in Canvas just like their other courses. The new course will have Multi-Section in the title that the Instructors can see. The students will see the title of the course that they registered for.

Content Considerations with Multi-Section Courses in Canvas

  • Modules: Modules are NOT necessary when combining two sections of the same course if there are no differences in assignments, discussion, due dates etc. If you want to keep discussions separate so you can manage them more effectively, you may want to use modules.
  • Gradable Items: If you need to have different availability and/or due dates, points, etc.… with your gradable items (using the Canvas quizzes, assignments, or discussions tools), you will have to create different versions of these gradable items by section. You may want to consider using modules in your grouped/cross listed Canvas course to separate the “sections”. Modules can be assigned to specific CRN’s that have been grouped in one Canvas course shell. Students who are assigned to specific modules based upon CRNs will not see the work in the other modules if the module has not been assigned to them.
  • When viewing the Grade Center, you can filter by sections with multi-section courses. You may also find a need to filter by modules as well- this may assist you in grading within a multi-section course.
  • Also, if a group of students is NOT assigned to a specific assignment you will not be able to inadvertently give those students a grade for unassigned work and the students will not be able to see those gradable items that do not relate to them.

How do I create an announcement for a specific section of a multi-section course?

  • Click "Announcements" on the course navigation menu on the left.
  • Click the blue "+Announcement" button.
  • Type a title for your announcement in the "Topic Title" box.
  • In the "Post To" section, remove the "All Sections" option and click the down arrow to select one or multiple sections that are part of the multi-section course.
  • Type additional information about your announcement in the second, larger box.
    • Note you can also add links, images, videos, and other resources in this section. To learn more, view the “Use the Rich Content Editor” tutorial on the CTLD's Introduction to Canvas.

How do I view students from a specific section of a multi-section course?

  • Click on the Gradebook link
  • Click on the View option
  • Click on the Filters option and select sections
  • Click on right arrow under the option “All Sections” and select the specific section you wish to see
  • Once you are finished you can click the right arrow to select another section or “All sections” to see all students within the multi-section course

How do I make a quiz, assignment, or discussion only available to students from a specific section of a multi-section course?

  • Click the quiz, assignment or discussion you would like to edit.
  • Scroll down to the Assign section.
  • In the "Assign to" field, remove the “Everyone" option.
  • Click the down arrow to select specific sections that will be able to see this specific item.
  • Click the "Save" button.



Article ID: 137607
Wed 9/8/21 9:20 AM
Thu 8/25/22 2:44 PM