Canvas: Sharing Content - Blueprint vs. Crosslisting

Canvas provides instructors two options for merging courses and sharing content: Blueprint Courses and Crosslisting. This article will highlight some of the advantages and disadvantages of each to help instructor determine which option is best for their courses. For more information visit the Canvas Community.


Blueprint vs. Crosslisting


A Blueprint course is a parent course that shares content with associated courses. Individual course sections remain separate but the content is shared from the parent course. Instructors must request a Blueprint course and the course associations through the MSU eforms system.

Directions on how to Blueprint MSU Canvas Courses


  • Easy to share content
  • Courses remain separate so instructors can have different due dates, assignment requirements, etc. and students remain in individual sections


  • No group collaboration (discussion board, groups, etc) among sections
  • Blueprints must be created by admins



A Crosslisted course is created by merging multiple sections of a course together. This becomes one course where all students from individual sections are now enrolled and all content is managed.

Directions on how to Crosslist MSU Canvas Courses


  • Content is added in one course section and all students enrolled in all sections have access
  • Less updating needed
  • Access the full course roster in Grades, which can also be sorted by section
  • Ability to create section-specific content such as: assignments, events, announcements, grade discussions, and quizzes


  • All the cross-listed sections or courses will now have the parent course's name
  • You cannot mute section-specific assignment grades. You either have to mute all sections or none.



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Article ID: 1482
Tue 11/6/18 3:19 PM
Thu 5/28/20 12:22 PM

Related Articles (3)

Instructions for requesting a Canvas blueprint course to share content among multiple courses
Explanation of the various types of courses available in Canvas
Instructions for crosslisting multiple courses in Canvas to make one course.