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Best Practice: Reuse and Save Content

This information applies only to the Original Course View. Your institution controls which tools are available. To learn about these features in the Ultra Course View, visit the individual topic about the function you're interested in.

You can reuse and save content from one of your courses with the archive, export, and course copy features. Use this information to decide which option is best for your needs.

Archive courses

The archive course feature creates a frozen snapshot or permanent record of your course. An archive includes all the content, course statistics, users, and course interactions, such as blog posts, discussions, and grades.

The system saves an archived course as a ZIP file—a compressed file containing the course's content. ZIP files are also called "packages." You can restore a ZIP file on the same or a different server.

When to use: Archive a course to maintain a record of your course—a point-in-time backup. When you archive a course, choose to Include Grade Center History and to Copy links and include copies of the files.

You can restore archive packages, but they aren't intended for teaching the course again as the system restores all user interactions as well. Be aware that this file will contain FERPA-protected student data and work. Store archive packages in a secure location.

Export courses

The export course feature creates a ZIP file of your course content that you can import to create a new course. Unlike the archive course feature, the export course feature doesn't include any users or user interactions with the course. An export only includes the content and the tools you select during the export process.

On the Export page, you can choose to export the course in IMS Common Cartridge format. Common Cartridge provides a cross-LMS course package in compliance with IMS Common Cartridge standards. These standards allow you to share content across learning management systems.

More on the common cartridge format

When to use: Export a course when you want to reuse course materials at a later time to teach a new set of students. You can also share your exported course with others.

Course copy

You can copy courses and use them as a convenient way to reuse and adapt existing course structures, materials, and content.

A course copy operation doesn't create a ZIP file. You have options when you make a copy.

You can copy one course's content to create a new course. You can copy all or part of the content into a new course or an existing course. You can copy part of one course into another without overwriting any of the existing course's content. You can also make an exact copy, which brings all the users and user data into the new course.

When to use: If you want to create a new course that has many of the same features as an existing course, you can copy the existing course. For example, you want to have two courses and use the same materials but with different sets of students. You can copy the course materials from one course to another without copying the user enrollments. If one course is the first semester of a two-semester course that includes the same students, you can copy some of the course materials and the enrollments.