Browse Courses by Topic

Course Topics provide a way of browsing the course catalog by user-defined subjects or categories.  You can nest Topics to provide a hierarchy that improves a user's ability to drill-down, find, and enroll in courses of interest.  For instance, the parent topic "Math" could have several child topics, such as "Geometry", "Algebra", and "Calculus" that further narrow the browsing results when selected.  When browsing the child level, users will also be able to see the upper level topics and can easily select one of them to change their results.

To use this tool, Portal Administrators must activate the Topics feature, add one or more topics, and then associate the topics with the desired courses. Once the feature is enabled and topics exist, a new section Browse by Topics displays in the My Learning Center menu.

Enable Course Topics Feature

Course Topics will not display in your LMS until you activate it.

  1. Log in as a portal administrator.
  2. From the My Learning Center menu, navigate to Site Management > LMS Information.
  3. On the LMS Information page, scroll down to Course Topics and check the box.
  4. Click Submit.
  5. After you see the "Edit Successful" message, refresh your browser.

Create a Topic

To create a topic:

  1. From the My Learning Center menu, navigate to Course Support > Add topic.
  2. On the Add Topic page, provide the following General Information:
    • Language: The first language for a topic must be made in English. If you want to create translations in other languages, come back to this field and select the desired language. You can then complete the subsequent entries in the chosen language.
    • Code (required)a unique identifier for the topic in your LMS
    • Name (required):  Text that appears in the left navigation Browse by Topics section for this topic
    • Description: enter additional text, if desired, to help you remember or identify the topic
    • Effective Date: date on which the topic becomes active for browsing.
    • End Date: To leave the topic in place permanently, leave this field blank. To inactivate a topic, provide the date on which it is to become inactive.
  3. On the same page, if you want to establish a hierarchy that includes this topic, you can establish the Topic Relationships:
    • Parent Topics: If you want this topic to be subordinate to one or more higher level topics, select its Parent topics from the Course Topic Picker. 
    • Child Topics: If you want this topic to be superior to one or more lower level topics, select its Child topics from the Course Topic Picker. 
  4. Click Submit.

As soon as topics are created, they will become available in the "Browse by Topics" section of the left navigation menu.

Associate a Topic with a Course

To associate a course with a topic:

  1. Find and edit the desired course by using keywords in the Course Search field or by using Courses > Search Courses
  2. Select the General tab.
  3. When the General tab appears, scroll down to Topics.
  4. Click Choose Topics.
  5. From the Course Topic Picker, search for and select one or more topics to associate with the course, then Checkout.
  6. To submit changes, click Save Course.

If Established Topics Do Not Appear

If you enable Course Topics on the LMS Information page but the features do not display as expected, you may need to modify your stylesheet.
  1. From the left navigation menu, navigate to Site Management > Edit Stylesheets and select your preferred Stylesheet File. To find the sections mentioned below, you can use [CTRL]+[F] to find the desired text easily.
  2. Locate the section .course-tax and change display=none to /*display=none;*/
  3. Locate the section entitled /* Taxonomy */ and change the four display=none phrases in the section to /*display=none;*/.
  4. Locate the string ctlTemplate_regLeftNav_ctlMenuFooter_ctlCourseTaxonomySearch_lblCurrentTaxonomyName . If font color is defined, comment out the color by enclosing it in “/* */”. For example: /*color:#5d5d5d*/
  5. Click Submit.


Browse Topics in Course Catalog Searches

The ability to Browse by Topics is also available when performing a Course Search from the Course Catalog option on the Navigation page.  Drill down in the left navigation pane to explore topics and sub-topics. Click a breadcrumb, such as "All Topics" to return to the full view. In the Classic Home page of the legacy UI, Browse by Topics is remains available on the primary left navigation menu, visible at all times, not just during Course Catalog searches.

Course Catalog Search page showing Browse by Topic in the new left navigation pane