Effective 01/2021 – Albright College

Effective 01/2021

Policy Name

Meta-Course Creation

Policy Category


Policy Approved By

Vice President

Responsible Division Head or VP

Assistant Dean for Online and Digital Learning

Responsible Department

Digital Learning and Innovation

Responsible AVP or Director

Provost and Senior Vice-President of Academic Affairs

Original Policy Date


Last Known Revision Date


Current Policy Effective Date


Recommended Policy Review Date


Policy Applies To


Additional Authority/References

Accreditation – Middle States


To define the principles around the creation of meta-courses in the Learning Management System (combining of sections of the same course into one course shell) and FERPA guidelines with student interaction in meta-courses.



This policy applies to all course sites stored in Albright College’s Learning Management System.



The guiding principles of this policy are:

  • Create an interface that is easier for faculty to manage if the faculty member teaches
    two or more sections of the same course.
  • Ensure adherence to FERPA regulations.

This policy applies to all courses taught in the Undergraduate, Graduate and SPS catalog and
sites maintained by staff and other areas of Albright College. The policy refers to all courses
automatically generated in the registration system and subsequently populated in Canvas.
Additionally, this policy refers to any restored or otherwise manually created added courses
by faculty, staff and students. This policy applies to all users of Albright’s learning
management system.

Once a meta-course is created in the Learning Management System, the Family Educational
Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) regulations that require students not have access to student
information from course sections they are not enrolled in will apply. According to FERPA,
students should not be able to interact in the Learning Management System with students
from another course section unless the students physically meet in the same classroom at
the same time.

Faculty will ensure the following:

  • The merging of two or more sections of a course happen before the semester begins.
  • The People, Chat, Conferences and Collaborations menus are hidden from students.
  • The disabling of students to create new Discussion Forums and create their own

    • Faculty can create their Groups, but must be manual and students cannot
      cross-over from the individual sections of a Group.
  • The disabling of students to comment on Announcements.
  • The sending of separate messages to each section instead of the whole group.

Also, while this is not required, faculty can set calendar events and assignment due dates by
section. Finally, you can also create differentiated assignments for each section or group.

This policy will be updated by the Digital Learning and Innovation department.


A help document is located in the Faculty Canvas Help Center to direct the activities of the
meta-course to fulfill all guidelines/requirements by FERPA.




(Note:     electronic copies of the former versions of the policy must be maintained within the unit, department, or division)

Click or tap to enter a date.

Click or tap to enter a date.

Click or tap to enter a date.

IMPLEMENTATION PLAN – For decision-making purposes only.  This will not appear in the Final Policy that is posted to the Policy Repository.

The implementation plan consists of training and help documentation provided by the Department of Digital Learning and Innovation.


DECISION – For decision-making purposes only.   This will not appear in the Final Policy that is posted to the Policy Repository.

Date of Draft Policy Review


Name of Reviewing Committee/Individual

Date Approved



Date Rejected

Click or tap to enter a date.


Date Draft Tabled or Further Review Needed (provide comments including plan for re-submission)

Click or tap to enter a date.


View this Policy as a PDF.