D2L Migration and Retirement

Last Updated: 02/26/2020


As of August 1, 2019, CU Boulder’s time on the Desire2Learn (D2L) learning management system has come to an end. This page aims to answer the questions you have regarding how the Office of Information Technology will help manage course and student data now that D2L is no longer available.

Important Dates

  • August 1st, 2019: D2L is retired, and users can no longer access the system.

Frequently Asked Questions

What D2L courses were migrated to Canvas?

The last taught version of every D2L course from Fall 2015 and on has been migrated to Canvas by OIT. You will see your migrated course copy within two business days after you create your new course in Canvas. Some community and sandbox courses were migrated by request prior to D2L’s retirement.

How do I access the content that already has been migrated?

When you create your new Canvas course, you will be enrolled in a course in Canvas that contains your migrated D2L course materials within two business days. You will be able to copy content from the migrated course into your new Canvas course. The course import tool tutorial will show you how.

What if my course wasn’t migrated?

If your course is an academic course from Summer 2012 or later, OIT can still migrate it for you even now that D2L is retired. Contact the IT Service Center at oithelp@colorado.edu or (303) 735-4357 and provide us with the course name and term, and we will migrate it into Canvas. Sandboxes, community courses, and academic courses older than Summer 2012 were only migrated by request prior to D2L’s retirement.

What student data can instructors get from D2L now that it’s retired?

OIT has archives of course activity data such as course grades, feedback comments, quiz responses, etc. Contact the IT Service Center at oithelp@colorado.edu or (303) 735-4357 and let us know what data you would like to see and for which courses or users. The data will be provided as a plain-text spreadsheet (i.e. a CSV file).

Some kinds of data could not be archived. Documents students submitted to Dropbox folders or attached to messages or discussion posts were not be kept unless they were submitted to Turnitin-enabled Dropbox folders (Turnitin provided originality-checking within D2L).

What if a student needs to access data after D2L is retired?

OIT can share archived course content or student activity data on a case-by-case basis with students. In most cases, the instructor of the course will need to authorize this access. Student should contact the IT Service Center at oithelp@colorado.edu or (303) 735-4357 and let us know what archived information they are looking for.

Why didn't OIT just migrate all courses into Canvas?

Usage data indicated that the great majority of instructors only reused content from courses they taught one semester prior. By only migrating the last-taught version of courses from Fall 2015 and on, we were able to save storage space in Canvas and avoid cluttering up instructors’ course lists with multiple copies of each course. However, any course from Summer 2012 and on can still be migrated into Canvas from archive by request.

Why were only academic courses from Summer 2012 and later archived?

D2L was fully launched in Summer 2012. Some instructors had courses prior to this on D2L which were either migrated from the previous LMS or were part of the D2L pre-launch. These courses couldn't be migrated automatically due to lack of standardization in how they were organized. Sandboxes and community courses were not archived due to a large number of these courses being out of use. Many of these courses, however, were migrated to Canvas by request prior to D2L’s retirement.