Currently, the Course Duration and Term Duration settings override the Availability of a course. Some instructors, however, require or allow students to access course materials before the "start date" of the class. With start/end dates specified in the Duration settings by date, students are prohibited from viewing a course until the start date, even if the course is marked "Available."
Course Duration and Availability should have the option of being de-coupled, so they are independent of each other. If the course should not be available to students, the teacher should be allowed to control that rather than having the course forced to non-availability because start/end dates are specified.
This would allow administrators to specify start/end dates (or have them loaded by an integration tool such as ILP) so that future courses (by start date) appear in the "Upcoming Courses" column on the Courses page. Having to set courses to "Continuous" Duration forces all courses to appear in the "Current Courses" column in order for students to have early access to course materials.
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