Automatic Content Import

What is automatic content import?

The University has contracted with a vendor that is automatically copying course content from Compass 2g to Canvas. Automatic content import is intended to save you time in the transition to Canvas.

Compass course content from Fall 2019 to Spring 2022 was automatically archived in Canvas until you are ready to use it. If your course is automatically imported, you can start working directly in Canvas.

Content imported into Canvas is NOT a 1:1 replication of your course. Cleanup is required and some items may need to be recreated or replaced.

After your content has been imported

If you do NOT plan to use Canvas immediately:
You can check that your content has been copied at and wait to take any further steps until you are ready.

If you want to explore Canvas, but have not decided to use it yet:
Follow the steps outlined in the sections below. In step 2, you will want to request a “Development Space”. If you decide to use Canvas in an upcoming semester, you will need to review step 5.

If you are using imported course content for the next semester:
Follow the steps outlined in the sections below. In step 2, you will request a “Registar-Affiliated Space”. You will not need step 5. 

Step-by-Step Instructions

If you wish to begin working with your automatically imported content, use the following step-by-step instructions.

1. Check your course content

Log in at to check that your Compass content has been added. Select “Courses” from the left-side navigation, then select “All Courses”.

2. Request a new Canvas space

Follow the instructions to request a new Canvas space. You will need copy your imported course content to a new space to edit your course content.

3. Copy course content to the new Canvas Space

After your new space has been created, follow this guide from Canvas to copy over the course content that was automatically imported.

4. Clean up your course content in Canvas

Check the Course Details tab

  1. Add a course card image (if desired).
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the “Course Details” tab.
  3. Open “more options”.
  4. Here you can set the number of announcements shown on the home page and change settings if you use discussions in your course.

Check the Navigation tab

  1. In the “Navigation” tab you can show, hide, and reorder the left-side navigation links that appear in your course.
  2. We suggest starting with Syllabus, Announcements, Modules, People, Grades, and Discussions (if applicable).
Set or change your course home page
  1. To set a custom home page, you must first create and publish a new page.
  2. Then, you can set it as the home page in your course.

You have three options to add your syllabus:

  1. (Recommended) Use the Canvas Syllabus tool
  2. Create a module titled “Syllabus”
  3. Upload your syllabus as a file

REMINDER: Be sure to check the text in your syllabus and other pages to replace any text references to “Compass 2g” or “Blackboard”.

Review your groups and any connected assignments or discussions. You may need to recreate any missing groups and/or group sets in your course.

  1. Visit the Assignments area to check due dates and point totals for all assignments.
  2. You can update due dates and availability dates for multiple assignments at one time.

Consider grouping assignments by category or type. This can help greatly improve your grading options and overall course maintenance experience.

NOTE: During the automatic content import, group discussion assignments may have created duplicate forums you will need to remove.

Consider pinning some discussions to standardize the order on the Discussion Index page.

NOTE: Quizzes from the automatic content import are created as Classic Quizzes. Please take this opportunity to carefully review all of your quiz content, including point values, question groups/pools, and quiz settings.

  • The following question types are not supported in Classic Quiz: Hotspot, Quiz Bowl, and File Response.
  • Please check any quizzes that use images or equations.

  • Canvas does not allow automatic lettering or numbering of answer options.
    • If you plan to format answers in this manner, you will need to manually add the letter or number to the option (e.g., instead of “apple”, you will need to type “C. apple”).

  • You cannot randomize answer options for individual questions in a Classic Quiz.

  • Imported quizzes are unpublished by default. Switch them to published once you have finished reviewing.

When creating quizzes, you will see the option for “New Quizzes”. New quizzes are still in a testing phase, but include some additional question types and features. You can refer to the New Quiz Feature Comparison chart for more information.

We recommend creating rubrics on the Rubrics Index page, rather than from within the assignment itself. Doing so will prevent accidental loss of data if the rubric is later deleted from the assignment.

Visit the following Canvas guides for instructions on how to add rubrics to assignments, graded discussions, and quizzes.

If rubrics are used for more than one assignment, you will not be able to edit the rubric until you remove it from other associated assessments.

By default, course files are visible and accessible to ALL users. Any content you do not want students to access should be moved into a locked folder.

  • Consider adding folders for improved organization.
  • Remove duplicate files and older files that are no longer used.

Review date restrictions on modules if this is important for your course. In Canvas, modules can be locked until a certain date and time.

Individual Pages cannot be date restricted unless you move the page into a locked module.

5. (If needed) Copy from a Development to Registrar-Affiliated Space

If you built a Canvas course in a development space and have decided to use it for an upcoming semester, you will need to follow these steps:

  1. Request a “Registrar-Affiliated Space”
  2. Copy content from the development space

Course rosters are automatically added to your Registrar-Affiliated Canvas Space on the Thursday before the first day of a semester.


Need additional help? We recommend you attend one of the upcoming training sessions, review Canvas documentation, or reach out to our support team for assistance.