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The Content tool is used to design, create, organize and share course content materials for students and other site participants. Instructors may create text-based content, share links to external sources, upload downloadable documents and link to other tools and features within the site. Lesson content can include simple text to multimedia assets, like embedded audio files and video files. The design and function possibilities are vast. 

Content is organized into Units that operate like folders for course materials.  Within units are Lessons, which act as sub-folders. Lessons can contain Folders with content in them. Folders are the deepest Brightspace can go in the Content area. To learn more, see Designing and Organizing Materials in Content


Table of Contents

Page Tree

Accessing Content

Content can be accessed from the Content link on the course navbar. It can also be found through Course Tools > Course Admin. Find out more about navigation through Course Admin here: Course Administration

View of Course Home page, Content link on navbar is highlighted

Key Features of Content  

Upon visiting Content for the first time, users see a blank welcome space. Just below the Navbaris a row of icons. From left to right the icons are Outcomes, New Unit, and a Settings gear.  

View of Empty Content space. Outcomes, New Unit, and Settings icons are highlighted.


The Outcomes tool is connected to a larger competencies tool that is still a work-in-progress. It is recommended that users focus on other aspects of Content and Brightspace for the time being. 

View of Outcomes icon

New Unit

The New Unit tool gives users the ability to start their content-building journey. Clicking on New Unit brings users to the unit editor. After creating a unit and selecting it, the Visibility, Add Existing, and Editor buttons appear. Please see Designing and Organizing Materials in Content to see how to create a unit and organize various content items. 

View of New Unit icon

Settings Gear

The Settings Gear gives instructors the ability to preview the Content area as a student, as well as view various reports that outline which users have visited each content item, average time spent in content items, and more. 

View of Settings Gear

After a Unit is Made


 The following buttons only appear once a unit/content item has been created and is selected. Go to New Unit or Designing and Organizing Materials in Content to learn more. 

Once a Unithas been made, the rest of Contentbecomes open. New options appear along the top of the Content area. From left to right after the Settings gear are Visibility, Add Existing, Create New, and the Editor icons.

View of Content page with one unit made. New icons are highlighted


Visibility is a toggle that sets units, lessons, or other content items to Visible or Hidden from students. When hidden, content items display an eye with a slash through it. 

Clicking the Hidden icon will toggle the content item to Visible.


Please note: Content items are set to Hidden by default when created. 

View of Visibility toggle set to hiddenView of Visibility toggle set to visibleView of Unit 1 displayed as hidden

Add Existing Button

The Add Existing button allows instructors to add content that they’ve already created/have to the Content area. Already created content can include embedded files (see Embedding Files to learn more), External Tools such as McGraw-Hill Connect, and links to various Brightspace activities such as Discussions and Quizzes. 

View of Add Existing button

Create New Button

The Create New button allows instructors to build new content for the Content area. This is where lessons (sub-folders) are created, as well as the text editor called HTML Document, Web Links, and various Brightspace activities, such as links to Quizzes and Discussions that have yet to be created by the instructor. Many instructors will want to start with an HTML Document as it allows for insertion of text, images, videos, and more. 

View of Create New button

Editor Button

The Editor button allows instructors to go back and edit/organize/delete content items. Instructors can also view any Release Conditions they’ve placed on the specific content item they have selected. To learn more about Release Conditions, please visit Release Conditions in Brightspace

View of Editor button

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