Semester Start for Faculty Members

Semester Start Up Checklist

There are several steps faculty should run through before launching their courses at the start of each semester. We recommend checking this checklist out before the start of term to keep on top of your VIULearn courses.

Learn more about: Semester Start Up Checklist

Key Semester Start Considerations

No matter how you are using VIULearn, there are a few key semester start considerations for all faculty members using VIULearn:

Do you need to map two or more course sections mapped together?

The connection between VIULearn and other VIU administrative systems means that every course section will have its own course shell in VIULearn. Instructors will often be teaching multiple sections of the same course so they will have two or more course shells to update. Instructors can send a request to to have these course sections “mapped” or combined together, so that they will only have to update one course shell for multiple course sections.

Learn more about: Course Mapping Information

Do you need to import course content and/or activities from a previous semester?

Copying components saves you from having to recreate your course’s resources from scratch and can significantly reduce the amount of work required to create or re-offer a course. You can also import course components created in other learning managements systems, or created in a content creation program.

Learn more about: Using Copy Components in VIULearn

Learn more about: Importing Course Components

Learn more about: Customizing Your Course Image and Course Banner

Have you updated your course start and end dates, and activated your course?

All courses in VIULearn are created in the Scheduling and Workload System (SAWS). They are "inactive" by default so if instructors choose not to use VIULearn the students cannot see or access empty course shells. It is important for you to activate your course when you are ready for learners to access your course.

Learn more about: Activating Your VIULearn Course

Have you let your students know you will be using VIULearn?

Since there is no requirement to use VIULearn at VIU, it is up to you to let your learners know that you are using this tool. Sometimes, learners need some additional help and support to use VIULearn effectively. The Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning offers learner support resources as well as a a variety of learner orientation options. We depend on faculty members, program assistants and others involved in supporting learners to let us know what support you need. If you are interested in a learner orientation to VIULearn, use the link below to review the options available to you.

Learn more about: Informing Learners About Your Course

Learn more about: VIULearn Help for Learners

Learn more about: VIULearn Orientation Booking Options


  • Remember to activate your course your students won't see it - even if you set up the dates
  • Request multiple sections of the course be mapped (or combined) prior to adding content to your course
  • Make sure to backup your course before you make major changes to Content or other activities