Academic Policies

LMS Policy and Procedures

Purpose and Overview

The purpose of the CalArts LMS Policy is to define the procedures and guidelines that govern CalArts’ learning management systems (LMS) and ensure compliance with institute policies for remote only instruction in the 2020/2021 academic year.

CalArts currently uses two learning management systems: Learn (, which is for on-campus students and faculty, and Access (, which is for Extended Studies programs only. Both systems run on Kannu, which is a cloud-based LMS platform owned by Kadenze, Inc. Our contractual relationship with Kadenze is subject to review by the Provost and Academic Council and will be discussed for approval ahead of the next contract renewal. 

Faculty may choose to offer online course content via another LMS or platform of their choosing, however they will not have the same tech and training support offered for our designated CalArts LMS. However, even if the course is primarily run from another platform, faculty will be required to maintain a description of their class on the syllabus page of  Learn that links out to the other course site.

The LEARN site provides a central place for students to get information about their classes; you do not need to be your full course syllabus on the site. You should post enough information to help students understand your course expectations, how it will be conducted and how to contact you.  Again, you do not need to use LEARN to host your class, but should post the following information on the Syllabus page for LEARN.

Remember, only your enrolled students will be able to see your syllabus and your LEARN site.

  • How they should contact and dialogue with you
  • What platform(s) you will use to host or distribute content (either the Learn LMS or otherwise, such as google drive, etc)
  • If the class has synchronous class times, when are they and how are they held? If they are held through ZOOM, include your zoom link for the class.
  • Any classroom expectations you have around:
    • attendance
    • assignments and grading
    • classroom behavior
    • camera use
    • recording of courses
    • copyright and use of course materials

The easiest and fastest way to post your syllabus is as a pdf.  

LMS Management and Administration

The primary LMS administrator (Super Admin) and other Admins are positions designated by the Office of the Provost. 

Students, faculty and staff who have questions about the LMS, need technical support, or require assistance with access issues should contact: 

Faculty needing assistance with cloning courses, merging course sections, creating a sandbox course, etc, should make their request through the form available on the Hub. Please note that requests can take up to 3 business days to complete. 

User Accounts

General access to Learn and Access is aligned with FERPA requirements, CalArts computer and network use policies, and reviewed and approved by the Office of the Provost in collaboration with the Director of Legal Affairs. 

Creating User Accounts

On both Learn and Access, a user account is created based on enrollment or teaching assignment information in the respective SIS (Colleague or Destiny One). Roles and permissions are assigned at the course level (see Roles and Permissions section below). A user may only have access to those courses they are enrolled in, or listed as the instructor of record in Colleague or Destiny One. Admins may not add other users to courses without explicit permission from the faculty.

A user has access to the platform as long as their CalArts email address is active. Access to individual course sites is platform-dependent and also at the discretion of the faculty teaching the class—see Course Sites for more information. 

Logging in to or engaging on Learn or Access with another user’s account is unauthorized. 

User accounts on Learn and Access are manually imported into each system, as follows:

Learn: All matriculated students and active faculty at CalArts will have a user account on Learn for the 2020/2021 academic year. This account will be created at the start of the semester based on course enrollment information in Colleague SIS. Each user account consists of the following information: 

  • First Name (chosen)
  • Last Name (chosen)
  • ​CalArts email address ( or—users who wish to receive email at a different address will need to set up email forwarding)
  • External ID (Colleague ID)

Access: User accounts on Access are manually created when a new student enrolls in a new course or program on Destiny One. Each user account consists of the following information: 

  • First Name (chosen)
  • Last Name (chosen)
  • Email address

  • External ID (X number from Destiny One SIS)

Name changes

Users who wish to change their name or email address must make the request through the system administrators for Colleague or Destiny One. If a user’s name or email address changes, a workflow event will be initiated from IT to the LMS primary administrator or designate to update the LMS. If a faculty member uses a different LMS platform, they will need to maintain and update any name changes to comply with CalArts policy.

Roles and Permissions

Roles within a course are configured at the course level, as follows: 

Instructor - Full writing and publishing privileges to all course content and course settings plus grading and moderating forums

TA and Course Staff - Same as Instructor privileges, but they cannot publish content or change course settings.

Instructional Support - Same as TAs/Course Staff, but no grading permissions or ability to see private submissions

Student - view content, submit coursework and forum posts, update their bio.

Auditor and Mentor - same as Student, but cannot submit coursework or view grades. Mentors have a special “Mentor” tag next to their forum posts. 

Role titles are specific to the Kannu platform and have no bearing on roles or titles within the institute, i.e., a Mentor role within Kannu is wholly different from faculty Mentors at CalArts. Refer to this page for more information on roles and permissions within Kannu.

Course Sites

What course sites are included on Learn?

Course sites are created based on information verified in Colleague, including Section Number, Short Course Name, and Course Sec ID. Course sites are manually imported in Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 with users (Instructor and Students) based on information verified in Colleague. Other users, such as TAs, should be added by the faculty member in the Instructor role within the course (see below).

A course site will be created on Learn for all course offerings listed in Colleague for each term in 2020/2021, with the exception of courses tagged with the following instructional types: Directed Study, Ensemble, Independent Project, Independent Study, Internship, and Lesson. Faculty must request a course shell through the Learn Requests Form (on the Hub) for any of the following scenarios: 

  • Course shell for an instructional type not included in term import

  • Merge sections: By default, each section of a course is given its own shell on Learn based on Colleague data. Faculty can request a common learning environment to group multiple sections together. 

  • Clone a previous course: request a copy of an entire course from a previous semester to the current semester. 

  • Sandbox or test courses: Faculty may request access to either a common or private sandbox course to test content or experiment with platform features. 

  • Non-curricular offerings: offerings that are primarily in support of teaching and learning on campus or student/faculty/staff training but not listed in Colleague or Destiny One. 

When are terms loaded into Learn?

IT will import course sites and the instructor(s) of record from Colleague before the term begins. A notification will go out to faculty once the course sites are ready.

The primary student import for each term will be completed after Deregistration in each term. During the add/drop period, registrations will be imported into the system nightly via API endpoint. 

Can faculty add other users to courses?

Yes—users with an Instructor role (faculty) are responsible for inviting Guests, Teaching Assistants, Course Staff and Instructional Supporters to their course. The personnel should have an or address.

Faculty can also invite students to their course, but that does not officially add the student to the course. To officially enroll in the course, the student and faculty must follow the same procedures for Add/Drop as outlined by the Registrar. 

Can students audit courses on Learn?

During the regular academic year (summer session excluded), currently enrolled full time students may audit a course (sit in unofficially) with the permission of the instructor (and program/school). Allowing auditing students to a course is entirely up to the faculty. Faculty may add any user with an or email address as an auditor to their course on Learn. No follow up with the Registrar or the LMS Administrator is required for auditing students. 

How long do users have access to a course?

Users with email addresses (i.e. faculty) have perpetual access to their courses on Learn for as long as they are employees of the institute. Since access to Learn is controlled by Google single sign-on (SSO), faculty who no longer have access to their address will not be able to access their content directly and will need to make a request to the LMS administrator for an export of their content. 

Students on Learn or Access may access course content for as long as the course is active. On Learn, when the course ends and is archived, access is controlled by the faculty of that course. On Access, the typical policy is that the course is available for 3 months after the course ends, after which it is archived completely.

Grading and Attendance

Learn and Access are not the official system of record for grades and attendance. Faculty may use the grading and attendance features of the LMS for keeping track of grades in progress and as an attendance tracker. At the end of each semester, faculty must submit their grades via the Faculty Self-Service Module for on-campus academic programs, or through Destiny One for Extended Studies programs. Attendance is not officially recorded unless a student never attended a course.  

Acceptable Use

All users are required to use Learn and Access in a manner that does not infringe on the rights of others. Posting on or submissions to the site are subject to disciplinary actions. All users are expected to continue to abide by CalArts’ policies and procedures, including:  

Data and Privacy

All users are expected to follow institute policies relating to data privacy, including FERPA regulations and the CalArts Privacy Policy. These policies protect: 

  • Against possible abuse of the system that could affect privacy and access.

    • Student Privacy (FERPA): Faculty, students, and staff should become familiar with the FERPA guidelines regarding education records. Faculty should consider student privacy issues when making choices regarding access to areas in their courses for users not enrolled in the courses. Areas of concern include grade book/sheet, discussions, blogs, and class roster.

  • Retention and safeguarding of information placed on the system.

    • System Administration: LMS Administrators make every effort to minimize the amount of personal information about students and faculty that resides on the system. Information used to create user accounts includes first and last name, e-mail address, and  student/faculty Colleague ID or X number. 

    • Content: The LMS is not a storage system. Any files that faculty and students want to retain should be stored on their computer hard drive or personal cloud storage. All users should back up any content on the LMS if and when they leave the institute. 


Faculty and students should follow guidelines for copyright and fair use when posting or sharing material on Learn or Access. For more information about copyright and fair use, please refer to the following: 


The Kannu platforms are intended solely for educational purposes In the absence of an explicit agreement saying otherwise, no use will be made of any materials posted by any user on either Learn or Access other than those intended by the user. 

CalArts will obtain permission before using any portion of faculty or student work in other mediums (for example, using a clip of a lecture in CalArts' social media).,ensuring that their intellectual property rights are respected.

Faculty who wish to further protect the materials they post on the LMS may want to consider including language in their materials that states: "For use in CalArts Course ABCD-123 - Spring 2020 ONLY."

For students and faculty, all of CalArts’ original policies around copyright and ownership continue to apply in the remote context; please refer to the following policy: 

Policy Category:
Adopted Date:
Dec 2020
Review Date:
Responsible Office: