Definitions and Hierarchy of Modules, Lessons, and Activities

This article describes the structure and hierarchy of course objects in our platform, including module, lesson, and activity. 


Courses in the platform are comprised of three main components:

  • Module: Typically 1 week for signature courses, modules are a complete unit of study within a course and often include several lessons, ending with a capstone to complete the module. When managing a live course, admins view learners’ completion rates using the Module Completion Bars.
  • Lesson: A lesson is a group of activities that support a specific teaching point or outcome. Lessons typically include 5-7 activities and total about 30 minutes of learning time. The default pacing setting in the platform is one lesson per day.
  • Activity: Lasting about 3-5 minutes each, activities contain the content of the course and should be grouped to create lessons. It is important when creating activities that they are digestible and flow smoothly from one activity to the next.

What does the hierarchy look like when building a course?

In the Build page, you can see the hierarchy by looking at the indentation of each course object. For example, in the image below, you can see a module, which contains a lesson, which contains several activities. 

hierarchy activity lesson module

What happens if you don’t nest activities and lessons properly?

It is important to ensure that when building a course, you nest activities under lessons and lessons under modules. When you do not, it can cause issues with the course pacing and/or visibility of some course activities. Tip: If you are building a course and see an activity or lesson that simply will not display in the course map the way you’d like, check to make sure it’s nested properly in the Build page.

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