Importing a Blackboard Archive into a Canvas Course
Step One: Know your Course ID
All Blackboard courses from 2002-2012 are archived on SMU servers-- if you need content from an old Blackboard course, you can access the archive directly and import it into Canvas. Please note that while all courses are backed up, but you’ll have to look them up by their course ID rather than their colloquial name.
Please make a note of the course ID of each course you want to download before you access the BbArchive. If you are looking for your own course from a previous term, you should be able to look in Canvas to get an idea of what your Course ID should look like.
The image below is a view from your current Canvas course's Settings page. You can see the SIS ID, as below. The first four characters are the year, and the next two characters are the term code. The rest of the course ID stays the same from term to term. This course is from 2012 Fall, as evidenced by it's ID, 2012 FS.
If you were looking for an earlier section of this course in the Bb Archive, it's course ID might look like:
Notice that only the year and term are different, but the rest of the Course ID is the same as the current term's.
For more explanation, see “Understanding your Course ID”.
Once you know your Course ID, you can navigate to the Bb Archive and download the course(s) you want to import into Canvas.
Access the Bb Archive
Go to the Start Menu in Windows, and type in \\oakusrdir00\BbArchive . (Please note that you need to be on SMU's internal network to access this location. It should work when you're on campus, or if you're VPN-ing in from off-campus).
Navigate through a few folders until you arrive at the archive of Blackboard courses.
Example: Find your Course Archive
For example-- I chose the course:
2012 SPRING - Health Assessment, Sacramento
And looked in Blackboard to find the Course ID:
Now I can navigate the BbArchive to find
And download it to my desktop.
Phew! The Hard Part's Over! Now Onward to Canvas...
The next step is to navigate to your Canvas course shell (or better yet, your dev shell).
Go to Settings and press the button to Import Content into this Course.
When you get the email, follow the link back into Canvas for the next step.
Choose what to Import
The next screen gives you the option to choose which pieces of content will be imported to your course.
Uncheck any materials you don't want, and press Import Course Content to proceed.
Canvas will take another break to process your content, and you will receive an email letting you know when you can re-enter your course.
Take a 3 minute cat-nap and check your email for an alert.
Welcome to your imported course!
Navigate first to the (1) Modules tab to see how Canvas has imported your course.
The Course Modules
Canvas nicely translates the folder structure you set up in Blackboard into their Modules interface. Even subfolders (not pictured here) are intelligently nested according to your settings in Blackboard.
Now let's look in the Files tab.
The Files Tab
By clicking on the Files tab, you can also see all of the files associated with your course. Unlike in previous versions of Canvas' upload tool, the files are named and organized just like you'd expect!