Instructor Delivery Requirements

Instructor Delivery Requirements

There are a variety of tasks beyond the facilitation of learning activities that need to be performed by the instructor before, during, and after an online class offering. This page provides a list of those essential Class Maintenance: Technical & Administrative tasks in a timeline presentation, as well as helpful links for further guidance.

At the bottom of this page, you will also find key information regarding Copyright of online courses, and the related responsibilities of USask instructors.

If you require assistance with any tasks outlined on this page, contact:

    • Gwenna Moss Centre for Teaching and Learning (formerly DEU): Contact the Flexible Learning and Technology (FLT) Program Assistant for your program, or
    • Instructional Technologies Coordinator: Robb Larmer, or 306-966-1739

Class Maintenance: Technical & Administrative

What follows is a schedule of maintenance tasks to be completed as part of your appointment as the class instructor. Click to expand each section.

Prior to start of term
 Task Description Timelines
 A. Textbooks Inform FLT Program Assistant of any changes to the required textbook(s) for your class.

    • If no changes are reported, the GMCTL will arrange for a bookstore order of the same textbook(s) used in the previous delivery.
    • If you require a desk copy of the textbook(s) for your class, see information from the USask Bookstore at Publisher Information for Desk Copies.
    • Clearly indicate if any access codes or other textbook accompaniments are required by students, as this will impact purchasing options.

Note that if the textbook has changed, all necessary updates to course materials (modules, assignments, page numbers, etc.) are the responsibility of the instructor.

~3 months prior to the start of term
 B. Exams If you are making a change to the final exam format from the previous offering (in-person, online, take-home, or no exam), confirm with your College or Department Head that the final examination format is acceptable.

    • For assistance or to create an online final exam, please contact Robb Larmer.
1 month prior to the start of term
 C. Syllabus Review and update the syllabus (including evaluations, class schedule and due dates, grading scheme, and instructor contact information).

    • Recent class syllabuses can be found in the Course Catalog. If you cannot find an editable (Word format) recent syllabus there, please contact for a syllabus template. 

Learn more about USask syllabus policies on the Teaching and Learning website

Submit your completed class syllabus to your Department Head for approval at least one month prior to the start of class.

Also submit your completed class syllabus in an editable format (i.e., Word document) to, who will keep it on file for future reference.

~1 month prior to the start of term
 D. Ready Your Online Class Copy the course content into the course for the current term. Ensure that you are selecting the correct version of the course to copy; copying the incorrect version may result in errors in the content, syllabus, textbook, etc. Contact Robb Larmer for help as necessary.

See the following link for instructions: How do I copy content from another Canvas course using the Course Import tool?

    • Instructors at USask are not able to “copy content into a new course shell”; instead, the empty course will be added for you by ICT, and afterwards you will copy content into it. The current course will not be available in your Canvas course list until about 1 month before the class begins.  

Note: Copying the course content is NOT required for initial deliveries of new classes; GMCTL will ready the class for all new deliveries. 

Note: We recommend the class is hidden from student view until 1-2 days before the start of term, allowing you to complete all of the tasks in this section before students access the class.

Check links throughout your class. Identify broken links and replace as necessary.

Note: The Canvas Link Validator tool is useful for finding broken links. However, it can only let you know if a link is broken (not if it is functional but points to out-of-date or incorrect information).

Refresh/reset any online tools such as Discussions, or other areas with student-generated content.

Note:  Look for instructions within the “Instructor Module” of your Canvas Course if you need help with resetting 3rd-party tools (e.g., Padlet, Mentimeter, Quizlet). Contact for further assistance as needed.

Update applicable course dates including Due Dates for assignments, Test Availability for quizzes/exams, and learning activities with specific associated dates.

Note: evaluations cannot be made due on University closure dates (stat holidays) or during mid-term breaks. Consult the Academic Calendar to find these dates each term.

Upload your Syllabus into the course in the “Syllabus” area. This will ensure the syllabus is publicly-accessible in the Course Catalog.

Follow the directions at this link to add a PDF to the Syllabus area of the course:  How do I embed documents from Canvas in the Rich Content Editor as an instructor?

    • A recommended approach is to adjust the “Link Options” to select both “Preview inline” and “Expand preview by Default”. This allows the file to display right on the page vs. the student needing to download/open the file.
2 weeks prior to the start of term
Start of term
 Task Description Timelines
 E. Publish Course When your class is ready to go live,  Publish the course for your students to see it. This must be done no later than the first day of classes.

To Publish a Canvas course, follow the instructions at this link:  How do I make my Canvas course and content available to students?  

1 day prior to the first day of class
During the term
 Task Description Timelines
 F. Final Exams A final exam date will be set for your class as part of the regular final exam scheduling system. This allows students to see all of their final exam schedule in one place on PAWS.

    • An in-person or online exam will be given a three-hour time slot in the final examination schedule. This will give students a three-hour window that is free of conflicts with other exams. Access to the exam can be made open for up to 24 hours should you want to have a longer window.

For all online exams (finals, midterms, and other tests), you are responsible for setting their deployment in Canvas. Contact Robb Larmer for help as necessary.

If required, adjust the exam settings for specific students (e.g., deferred tests, Access and Equity accommodations to grant additional time, etc.).  In Canvas, see the following links to make adjustments for particular students:

4 weeks before the exam period begins
End of term
 Task Description Timelines
 G. Final Grades Ensure that the final grades reported in the Canvas Gradebook are accurate. Contact Robb Larmer for help as necessary.

Submit final course grades formally via PAWS. See the following link for more information: Online Grade Entry, Grade Change and Grade ApprovalContact the IT Support Service Desk at for help as necessary.

See the Academic Course Policy on Class Delivery Examinations and Assessment of Student Learning for more information.

Within 5 business days after the date of the final exam 


The ongoing work required of maintaining copyright compliance is the responsibility of the instructor  just as it is in a face-to-face class. The GMCTL will work with instructors of new developments to ensure their class is copyright compliant; however, beyond that initial development you are responsible for copyright compliance when making any changes to the class content. This includes: 

    • New readings or other materials added to the class, or library licenses for existing readings change from term-to-term. 
    • New images added to the class; note that this includes images that might be embedded within another file, such as an instructor-made PowerPoint. 
    • New information added to the class content that requires proper referencing. 

To request a copy of the copyright clearances list (spreadsheet) created during the initial development of a class, please contact the GMCTL. 

For more information regarding the responsibilities of instructors and available resources to assist you, please visit or contact the Copyright Coordinator at or 306-966-8817. 


Last updated: Feb 22 2024 jmm lm