Semester/Term Start Up Checklist

9 Steps for a Smooth Online Start

Click the down arrows to the right of each step for more details!

The official first day of class at CBU is now a Monday (or Tuesday, if that Monday is a holiday). On that first official day of the term, CBU auto-publishes every course shell for the semester, so students can see all of their courses on their Canvas Dashboard. Even if you're not scheduled to meet until Thursday, your Canvas course should be ready for publication on the first official day of the semester. This is especially important for online courses, because students do not have a physical classroom to enter. If you're not ready to release your main course content on that first Monday, at minimum, your Executive Pages should be ready for students (Home Page, Syllabus, About your Instructor & Course Overview). 

See CBU Online Course Minimum Standards

If you have content you don't want students to see yet, keep those modules unpublished until you are ready.  Go to this Canvas How-To to see how to publish/unpublish course content.

2. Importing into Canvas

If you need to import a Canvas course into its new semester shell, click here for the Canvas How-To to guide you. If you run into any problems while importing, contact us at or (901) 321-4004.  Click here for on-demand and/or live CDI webinars to help you through the import process.  

3. Course Due Dates

4. Check that your course is ready for students

For in-person courses, both the course Home page and Syllabus page must be complete. 

For hybrid and online courses, the Home and Syllabus pages must be complete, and the first module of the course should be published. The linked guides below will provide you with an illustrated explanation about how to check your hybrid or online course for student readiness.

Click CBU Hybrid/Online Standards to see more complete list of expectations for all hybrid and online courses.

5. Request crosslisting or combining of multiple sections 

If you need two separate courses crosslisted into one course load or multiple course sections combined under one Canvas Common Shell, please contact us as soon as possible. Once students start entering, performing either of these functions can cause problems with your course.  Contact: (901) 321-4004.  

6. Send a Welcome Email

The week before class, it's a good idea to send your students a "Welcome Email." This helps prepare them for learning, get to know you and remind them about any textbooks or additional resources they'll need. Here's an example Welcome EmailThis quick guide will show you how to create a classroom email list. 

7. Guidelines for Synchronous Online Sessions

If you plan on using synchronous lectures or class time via Microsoft Teams, here are some considerations to keep your synchronous time student-centered.  

8. Notifying Students about Teams Meeting Times

Provide your students with this guide to join Teams meetings in Canvas. This guide is also located in the Student Resource section located at the top of every Canvas course template. 

9. Provide guidance about Follett All-Access in your course/syllabus

Consider adding language similar to this in your course and/or syllabus to provide students with more information about how to use Follett All-Access for their course materials: 

This course is part of the Follett ACCESS program, so you do not need to buy course materials. All required materials will be provided to you (unless you have chosen to opt out). Check your CBU email for updates about the program. It will include information about when your course materials will be ready for you to pick up or access from your digital shelf.  A course fee has been added to your student account for these materials. If you need more information, contact the CBU bookstore for details: (901) 321-3545 CBU Thomas Center.