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What is cross-listing?

Cross-listing is where multiple CRN sections of the same course are combined into one course shell in Canvas. This process is not able to be completed by instructors. A majority of cross-list requests are completed before course shells are released to instructors by your department’s scheduler and added as a unified shell within Canvas. These combined courses may share the same scheduling, location, and/or instructor. However, there are certain situations where this prior cross-listing is not possible and a manual cross-list will need to be created on your behalf.

In Canvas, how can instructors see if their course has been cross-listed?

In Canvas, there are two main indicators that may show your course has been cross-listed.

  1. In most cases, cross-listed courses will have all Sections listed in the Course Code. The Course Code is displayed at the top of your Canvas course and listed on the Settings page within Course Details.
  1. In all cases, cross-listed courses will have each Section listed within the Sections tab. Instructions on how to access the Sections tab are listed below.

From the Course Navigation menu within your course, click the Settings link [1].

Click the Sections tab [2].

Under Course Sections, view your sections [3] and the number of users within each section.

When to request a manual cross-list

Instructors primarily request cross-listing in order to improve course management efficiency. Not all courses can be cross-listed, though. The requirements for cross-listing are that all course sections must have the same content and occur within the same term.

Common cross-list request situations:

  • An instructor is teaching ABC-460 and DEF-460; these contain the same course content, but with different department codes.
  • An instructor is teaching ABC-543-001 and ABC-543-002. This course is listed as two different sections due to class size, but the Canvas course content is identical.
  • A special studies course, ABC-199, uses the same content as ABC-399.
  • ABC-435, an undergraduate course, and ABC-535, a graduate course, share the same content, with only 1 or 2 distinctions between assignments.

In a cross-listed course, by default all students will receive the same content and assignments. For this reason, we recommend you consider using the Differentiated Assignments feature. By using Differentiated Assignments, you can set different due dates and availability dates for quizzes, discussions, and assignments. You can choose if the assignment will be limited to specified students, sections, groups, or assigned to everyone in the course. Reference How do I assign an assignment to a course section? for more information on setting up Differentiated Assignments.

How do I start?

To begin the cross-listing process, submit a cross-listing support request including all course names and their corresponding URLs, if possible. If the request can be completed, we will reply with a link to the cross-listed course. If you have already begun adding content to one or more of the courses, please let us know so we can ensure your content is preserved. 

The Registrar’s Office requests that instructors with custom cross-listing in Canvas add this note to their syllabus or Canvas course:

“This Canvas course is shared by one or more course sections. This means that students enrolled in the other section(s) of this class will be able to see the Canvas course content, and may be able to view various activities such as discussion boards or any activities that are created by the instructor to be shared commonly among the different sections.”