Topics Map > Canvas

Canvas - How to Configure Course Participation Settings

Instructors can manage their Canvas course Participation settings from the Course Settings tab on the course Settings page. These settings manage when students can access your course and when they'll be able to complete course activities. As you setup your Canvas courses, please keep these settings in mind to ensure students are able to view your course as soon as it’s ready.

Step One: Choose a Course Participation Option

Option #1: Term-Managed Participation

The Term option is the default for newly-created Canvas courses and limits course participation to the “terms” setup in our Canvas system. Please keep in mind that Canvas term dates don’t match UW-Superior term dates exactly, so courses utilizing the Term setting will be accessible to students as soon as they’re published, and students will be able to participate in any open Assignments, Discussions, and Quizzes.

Canvas Course Participation Settings

Option #2: Course Start and End Dates

If you toggle the Participation dropdown to the Course setting, instead of the default Term option, student participation will be limited to the start and end date you enter in the Start and End date boxes (located below the Participation selector). Remember to click the Save button at the bottom of the page after making any necessary changes.

If you use the Course participation option, enter a Start date that corresponds with your class's scheduled start date. Enter an End date that's about one week after the end of the final exams period for your class, to ensure students don't lose access to your course before their work is complete.


Please don't provide access to assignments or graded course work until after your scheduled class start date. Allowing students to complete work before that time can impact student financial aid.

If you want to share course materials without setting availability dates on each assignment, lock your modules until the course start date or unpublish specific modules to publish later on. Contact the UW-Superior Canvas Team to discuss the best options for your course.

Screenshot of Participation Settings, Course Option

Step Two: Configure Participation Restrictions

Check either of the "Restrict students from viewing course…" checkboxes, as necessary. We recommend leaving the "before course start date" unchecked so students can see in Canvas that they're enrolled in an upcoming course. If you check the "after course end date" box, please inform your students that they should expect to lose access to the Canvas course after the class ends, so they should backup and save copies of their submitted work if they need it for a portfolio or their records.

Need Help?

For more information about managing access to your Canvas course, please visit this Canvas Instructor Guide page:

Canvas Instructor Guide: How do I change the start and end dates for a course?

Keywordsparticipation settings configuration options details   Doc ID127397
OwnerMichael M.GroupUW Superior
Created2023-04-20 15:45:49Updated2023-05-15 15:23:46
SitesUW Superior
Feedback  0   0