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Canvas - Migrating Course Content from Chalk (Instructor)

This article explains how to migrate course content from Chalk to Canvas.

Download a PDF version of this document.

You can migrate content from your Chalk courses into Canvas. We recommend you export course documents and tests or surveys separately. Rebuild other content directly in Canvas because:

  • Chalk does not export content consistently, making it difficult to find.
  • Content imported into Canvas is distributed in a messy fashion that takes more time to fix than rebuild from scratch.
  • Exports can fail for numerous, sometimes indiscernible reasons, including if files total to more than 2GB, individual files are larger than 500MB, groups are created.
  • Even if you import content, you still have to update links to files and content and make a good number of other adjustments because Chalk and Canvas organize materials differently.

Migrate Course Files

Migrate Tests, Quizzes, & Surveys

What if my Canvas import keeps failing?

Migrate Course Files

The course file migration process consists of three procedures:

  1. Download the course files from Chalk
  2. Upload the course files to Canvas
  3. Link the course files to Canvas modules

Download Files From Chalk

  1. Go to your course in Chalk.
  2. Click the link under the Files heading in the left navigation.
    Click the link under Files.
  3. Scroll to the bottom of the list of files and click Show All.
    Click Show All.
  4. Select the files you want to download and click Download Package at the top.
    Click Download Package.
  5. Download the .zip file
    Note: Download your files in batches if they total more then 2GB or if individual files are larger than 500MB.

Upload Files To Canvas

  1. Go to your course in Canvas.
  2. Go to Files in the left navigation.
  3. Drag and drop the file in the right panel, or click Upload at the top right to add the zip file from Chalk.
  4. Click Expand It to unzip the folder.
    Zip File Options Popup

Note: Library Course Reserves works the same way in Chalk and Canvas. Look for the Library Reserves link on the left.

Link Course Files to Canvas Modules

  1. Go to Modules in the left navigation.
    Note: Modules are like folders in Chalk. They contain links to materials for students.
  2. Click +Module at the top right to add a topic.
    Click +Modules
  3. In a module, click + to add an item.
    Click +


  • You must publish an item or module before students can view them. To publish an item, click the grey cloud (unpublished)Gray cloud to turn it green (published)Green cloud.
  • See the tipsheet "Ways to Organize Your Course" for ideas for improving the organization and presentation of your course matierials.

Migrate Tests, Quizzes, & Surveys

The migration process for test, quizzes, and surveys consists of two procedures:

  1. Download tests from Chalk.
  2. Upload tests to Canvas.

Download Tests From Chalk

  1. Go to your course in Chalk. If you have Groups in your course, you must delete all of your Groups, otherwise, the export and import process will fail.
  2. In the left navigation, under Packages and Utilities, select Export/Archive Course.
    Click Export/Archive Course
  3. On the Export/Archive Course page, select Export Package.
    Select Export Package
  4. On the Export Course page, in the Select Course Materials section, select Test, Surveys, and Pools.
    Select Tests, Surveys, and Pools
    Note: Leave the other course material items unselected. The export or import may fail if the files are too big, or the import may become too messy.
  5. Click Submit at the bottom of the page.
    Click Submit
  6. Look for the green success bar to appear at the top. You will receive an email when the file is ready for download. It may take up to one hour for the zip file to be ready, depending on the file size of your quizzes.

Upload Tests to Canvas

  1. Go to your course in Canvas.
  2. Click Settings in the left navigation.
  3. On the right, click Import Content into this Course. If your window is small, look for the button at the bottom of your screen.
    Select Import Content into this Course
  4. On the Import Content page, select Blackboard 6/7/8/9 export .zip file as the Content Type.
    Select Blackboard 6/7/8/9 export .zip file
  5. For Source, select the export file you downloaded from Chalk.
  6. Choose or create the appropriate Default Question bank into which you want the tests be imported.
  7. Choose the desired options under Content and Options.
  8. You can observe the import status under Current Jobs. After the import completes, you can find your tests under Quizzes.
    Note: If your import fails, try exporting again and be sure you have deleted all of your Groups. Live Chat or call the Canvas 24/7 hotline at (844) 334-6803 for further assistance.

What if my Canvas import keeps failing?

If your import keeps failing, you can use Respondus to export and import your quizzes. You can learn about using Respondus in these Knowledge Base articles.

See Also

Keywords:blackboard, migration, lms   Doc ID:67409
Owner:Cecilia L.Group:University of Chicago
Created:2016-09-30 15:25 CDTUpdated:2017-05-17 16:50 CDT
Sites:University of Chicago, University of Chicago - Sandbox
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