Teaching and Learning Resource Center

Forum Courses


Master Courses were retired in February 2023. The Request Master Course option on the Carmen landing page has been replaced with a Request Forum Course option.

A forum course is a CarmenCanvas course shell that is not connected to the Registrar's system. It is a dedicated, consistent space for building instructional materials that you can then copy into the academic course each semester.

All forum courses are grouped into a special term (e.g., Other term) in an effort to make the courses more visible and easier to find using the filter options. 

Instructors in a forum course can add other users in any role using the landing page functionality.

UX Tip

Depending on the number of courses you have loaded in your My Courses List, you may need to search for the Forum Course using the Filter options. 

Who can use these courses?

Anyone can request a forum course by using the Request Forum Course option on their Carmen landing page. If you do not have that option, you can submit a inquiry on the CarmenCanvas Contact form.

Why should you use them?

  • These non-academic course shells give you time to build your course the way you want, when you want, and update it as needed. Once your forum course is built, you can copy it each semester into your academic course shell.
  • You can make changes for a specific class or section (e.g., timeline changes, an additional discussion topic, etc.) only in the academic course for which they apply. If you decide any modifications will be useful for subsequent classes or sections, you can add them to your forum course. The forum course remains the clean, up-to-date version of your course.
  • Everyone who is involved in developing a course or updating course content from semester to semester can work in the same forum course, without having to be added to each academic course or worry about whether FERPA data is being protected.

Once you have developed your content in the forum course, you need to manually copy your course material into your academic course. Updates to material in a forum course do not automatically transfer to academic courses.