Canvas Transition: Clean Up Your Content

When Canvas imports Moodle content it tries to fit it into Modules, a structure similar to the Week or Topic course formats found in Moodle. After the import, the content layout should be recognizable but it will need to be cleaned up.

You may need to do the following things:

Eliminating duplicate Titles and Descriptions

There are a few places where content from Moodle will have duplicate entries in Canvas.

Canvas will import Moodle Topics/Weeks that have a description AND use Moodle's default naming scheme as two items. The Moodle description field becomes:

  • The module title AND
  • A separate entry in the module.

To fix these items: 

  1. Edit the module item to change the title to match the title in Moodle.
  2. If the separate entry is unnecessary because the title captures all the information, you can remove the module item.

Cleaning up Label text

Items that displayed on the Moodle home page with a Description, Label Text, or Summary field may appear more than once.

  • If the field was 251 characters or less, Canvas will insert a Text Header and display the information directly on the page.
    • If the field was used to display a simple title or short bit of information in Moodle€”something far shorter than the actual 251 character limit€”you can leave it as is.
    • If the field was used to display a paragraph of information, it will likely display poorly in Canvas. It should be converted to a Page.
  • If the field was 252 characters or more, Canvas will automatically insert a page. To change the page title to something more succinct:

Unpublishing answer keys

Unpublish answer keys so they are not available at course outset. If an item is published, there will be a green checkmark published-icon.PNGxon the right.

  • Click the checkmark to Unpublish. The icon will change to a grey international no symbol unpublished icon.

Re-linking Kaltura Media

If a page resource had embedded Kaltura media, it will not display in Canvas because the embed code was specific to Moodle. You will need to replace the code using Canvas's built-in Kaltura embed method.

  1. Find the page that contains the embedded Kaltura media.
  2. Click the page link.
  3. Click Edit.
  4. Find and delete the existing Kaltura Moodle embed code.
  5. Click the Embed Kaltura Media button canvas-embed-kaltura-media-button-20180104.PNGx. The Embed Kaltura Media page appears.
  6. Find the video or audio you need to embed.
  7. Click Select which will close the Embed Kaltura Media window and insert a medium-sized video in the Rich Content Editor.
    • If you want a size other than medium, click the drop-down Select menu and choose the size you want.
  8. Click the Play button to test the media.
  9. Scroll to the bottom and click Save.

Fixing Quiz Questions with broken images

If you need to edit a question in Canvas, you have to edit both the question as it is in a quiz and in its Question Bank. If the question is used in multiple quizzes, you will have to fix it in each quiz.

Fixing a broken image link is a 3 step process:

  1. Retrieving the original image from Moodle
  2. Editing a Quiz Question in a Quiz
  3. Editing a Quiz Question in a Question Bank

Retrieving the original image from Moodle

  1. Return to your Moodle course site.
  2. Go to the Administration block:
    • Click Question Bank, then Questions.
  3. Select a category from the drop-down menu. The questions appear.
  4. Click the Show question text in the question list.
  5. Optional: Click Also show questions from subcategories.
  6. Find the Question. The image should be visible.
  7. Right-click on the image and choose Save image as. It should be saved to your Downloads folder.

Editing a Quiz Question in a Quiz

  1. Go to your Canvas course, then select Quizzes in the course navigation.
  2. Click the name of the Quiz where the question is stored.
  3. Click the Edit button. The quiz Details tab opens.
  4. Click the Questions tab to view the Quiz questions.
  5. Mouse over the question you wish to edit. New icons will appear below the question title in the upper right.
  6. Click the Edit this Question icon. The Rich Content Editor (RCE) opens.
  7. Select the broken image link you want to replace.
  8. Replace it with the image you downloaded from Moodle. For step by step instructions, see Insert course images into the Rich Content Editor using the Content Selector.
  9. Use the Accessibility Checker in the Rich Content Editor.
  10. Click Update Question to save your changes.

Editing a Quiz Question in a Question Bank

  1. Go to your Canvas course, then select Quizzes in the course navigation.
  2. Click the Manage Question Banks icon in the upper right.
  3. Click the name of the Question Bank where the question is stored.
  4. Click the Edit button. The quiz Details tab opens.
  5. Click the Questions tab to view the Quiz questions.
  6. Mouse over the question you wish to edit. New icons will appear below the question title in the upper right.
  7. Click the Edit this Question icon. The Rich Content Editor (RCE) opens.
  8. Select the broken image link you want to replace.
  9. Replace it with the image you downloaded from Moodle. For step by step instructions, see Insert course images into the Rich Content Editor using the Content Selector.
  10. Use the Accessibility Checker in the Rich Content Editor.
  11. Click Update Question to save your changes.

Testing external URLs

External URLs can behave differently depending on the content they are pointing to and what browser you are using.

  • URLs linking to Google docs appear to open well
  • Links to other external resources may open a screen with a button or a large empty box with a link in the box's title.  

External URLs are identified with a green link iconKB0022265-external-link-icon-20171214.PNGxto the left.

  1. Click a link to test it.
    • If you get the error You are trying to launch insecure content from within a secure site (canvas). Some web browsers may prevent this content from loading
      1. Return to the Modules area
      2. Click the Options icon (3 vertical dots) on the right and select Edit from the drop-down menu.
      3. Replace the http:// with https://
      4. Check the Load in a new tab option.
      5. Click Update.
      6. Test the link again.
  2. Decide how you want to display your URLs. You can keep them as is or put them on a page.

Cleaning up tabs

If the Moodle course used the One topic format, tabs should have transitioned to Canvas modules.

If the course also used child tabs, also called subtopics, as seen below, they will have converted to modules as well.
Moodle home page displaying topic and subtopic tabs

If you want to combine the content of the child tabs/subtopics with the parent Canvas topic:

  1. Add a Text Header in the parent module with the child tab/subtopic name.
  2. Move or reorder the module items from the child module to the parent module. When finished, the child module will be empty.
  3. Delete the (empty) module.