Cross-Listing Course in Canvas

Why is cross-listing changing?

Student class enrollments are FERPA protected.    As such, separate sections of courses that are not cross-listed may not be merged in Canvas.  Allowing this would expose student enrollment information to students in one section enrolled to students in another section, which is a FERPA violation.  To address this issue, the Office of the Registrar and the Biggio Center have been working to develop a new set of processes to ensure FERPA compliance with cross-listed courses in CANVAS.   

There are three primary groups of requests for Cross-listed courses – each will require a new process for cross-listing in CANVAS as outlined below.

  1. Courses that meet the definition of a cross-listed course:
    1. New Process – Schedule builders/department personnel should build these course sections in AdAstra (no longer an option in Banner) as cross-listed sections.   By doing so, these courses will be made available for cross-listing in Canvas.  See below for the parameters a course must meet to be eligible for cross-listing.  Courses that meet the parameters of a defined cross-listed course do not violate FERPA and can be cross-listed in CANVAS.
  2. Courses that do not meet the parameters of a cross-listed course; however, faculty want to cross-list their course sections in Canvas for administrative purposes:
    1. New Process – The Biggio Center has developed a Qualtrics survey to identify sections that are requesting to be cross-listed under these parameters.   In these cases, instructors will need to take steps to ensure student privacy and compliance with FERPA.     The link to the Qualtrics survey can be located here:  Once the survey is submitted, the Biggio Center will set-up Canvas courses to be cross-listed.  Please allow sufficient time for the Biggio Center team to process the requests. Please refer to the following knowledge base article developed by the Biggio Center for the Canvas setting requirements found here:    
  3. Courses that do not meet the parameters of a cross-listed course and a faculty member is requesting the sections be cross listed for cross section interaction for a pedagogical reason.  These sections will need a FERPA waiver from students in each section to ensure FERPA compliance.  
    1. New Process – The Biggio Center and the OTR will work with the faculty member on a case-by-case basis to create a workflow through which students will sign a FERPA waiver to allow for cross section interaction and ensure FERPA compliance through the individual FERPA waivers.   Please contact the Office of the Registrar for sections that will require FERPA waivers for specific courses and we will work with the faculty members and the Biggio Center to create a formalized workflow.

Courses must meet one of these parameters to meet the qualifications of a FERPA compliant cross-listable section:

  1. Courses that are the same class, meeting at the same time, and in the same classroom
  2. Courses that are the same class, meeting at the same time, and one meets on campus while the other meets at the same time via distance.
  3. Courses that meet at the same time, but are assigned different course numbers (piggyback courses and honors courses)
  4. Courses that are the same class, meeting at the same time, but have different subject codes (equivalent courses)
  5. Courses that are activity/performance or studio based (Music and Theater courses) that meet in the same physical space at the same time.

How do I cross-list now?

Working with the Registrar's Office, Biggio Tech has developed a new workflow for cross-listing courses that adheres to FERPA guidelines. We hope this process will be more streamlined for faculty, while ensuring we protect our student's data.

Please submit your cross-list request here: We'll take it from there and cross-list the course(s) and, depending on the type of cross-listing, configure them to adhere to FERPA guidelines. Please let us know how the experience went for you and anything we can do to make it better.

How do I ensure my cross-listed sections are FERPA-compliant?

Ensure limited student interactions by adjusting the following settings in your Canvas course:

Settings -> Course Details -> More options:

Disable the following on the left-hand menu from the course navigation. Settings -> Navigation

TA Management:

When adding TAs, select "Can interact with users in their section only" and assign them to relevant


Require group members to be in the same section when creating groups.


Create separate groups for each section to limit interaction.



When sending messages to students in different sections, use "Send an individual message to each recipient" to maintain privacy.

How do I have cross-sectional interaction, like a Discussion board?

If you’d like for students in multiple sections to engage with each other, please contact the Registrar’s Office at (334) 844-2544 or