Transitioning Course Catalogs Between Calendar Years

August 26, 2022

One of the most frequent questions our team gets during catalog build-outs is “how do we prepare our catalog next year for the upcoming academic year?” We recognize that course catalogs need frequent updating, whether it be between academic years, semesters, or quarters, so we have designed the back-end of our catalogs to make that process seamless. Check out several tools and workflows we’ve setup to simplify making catalog updates year-over-year.

Annual Catalog Staging

At no additional cost to you, our team will set up a virtual staging of your upcoming calendar year’s course catalog. This allows your staff to make any updates or additions to the new catalog in advance, and gives your staff a version of the current catalog to edit as a starting place. It is essentially a safe space to edit your catalog without the work-in-progress being visible to students. Once your upcoming catalog is ready, we can easily publish it in place of the existing catalog with no downtime to your catalog site. If you need this staging setup more frequently than once between calendar years, our team is happy to make that happen.

Archiving Past Catalogs

We never fully delete past catalogs, but instead archive previous versions so that they are still accessible. These archived catalogs typically live in a sidebar on your table of contents page, but they can be organized anywhere you would like, whether it be public or private. This feature also proves helpful when your organization applies for accreditation or is up for a renewal. Many accreditation organizations require archived catalogs to be accessible to the public, and our catalog sites make it easy to simply link to the archived catalog URLs in your application.

Your catalog archives can either be PDF versions or archived digital versions. In most cases, colleges and universities choose to use their PDF versions as archives to help avoid confusion — with digital versions it's easier for students to end up on the wrong version.

Monitoring Updates in the Revisions Portal

Anytime content is updated in your catalog, those changes will be tracked within the revisions portal. This makes it easy to reference past versions of specific content, whether it be course listings, programs, or degree pages. If course content changes between Fall, Spring, and Summer semesters, this is an easy way to revert to previous semester versions without rewriting content each time. The revisions portal is also helpful in viewing changes that individual users have made. You can easily monitor whether each department or staff member has submitted their updates for the upcoming semester or calendar year, and easily identify the exact content they have changed.

Making content management easy for your staff is one of our primary goals here at Clean Catalog, and updating your catalog for upcoming calendar years is a big piece of that.

If you have any questions about transitioning your catalog or tools we use to simplify the process, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.