How to remove a course that was created by mistake OR not just not show it in catalog

Apologies for the multiple posts as I’ve searched the forum and the documentation but either do not understand what I’m reading or it doesn’t quite fit what I’m looking for.

I have a TON of old sections of courses that are no longer running and won’t run again. (My courses tend to re-run new sections each month). I try to set them as “none” in the catalog so they won’t show up if a student happens to click on “Discover New” but they seem to be showing anyway. This will confuse them massively and it looks like such an unprofessional mess. How can I fix this?

I’d like to either: 1) Delete these courses (which, from searching I get the impression that straight-up deleting courses is kind of frowned upon and not easy to do) or 2) figure out why setting them to “none” for the Catalog in Advanced Settings doesn’t seem to remove them from Discover New.

I just need a way to clean this mess up. Here is my site so you can see what I mean under “Discover New”


Can you try the following?

  1. Go to “Calendar and details” and change the course start and end dates and enrollment start and end dates to dates far in the past.

  2. After that, we need to go to “Advanced settings” and locate the “course visible in catalog” field, enter “none” in it and save the changes. This ensures that neither students nor administrators can see the course again.

I hope it helps!


Thank you for your response. Yes, unfortunately this does not fix the problem. I have tried this a few times, this is what prompted the post.

It worked for me. Did you change the enrollment dates also?

The enrollment dates are blank.

This is my Schedule & Details:

Can you test with those enrollment dates? Let me know if it doesn’t work to try other options :person_raising_hand:t3:

If I remember correctly, if you’re an admin (or maybe just staff), you see all courses no matter what their catalog visibility is configured to be. You might want to check visibility as a regular learner.

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I am starting to wonder if we made some serious errors in setting up our EdX installation.

“If I remember correctly, if you’re an admin (or maybe just staff), you see all courses no matter what their catalog visibility is configured to be. You might want to check visibility as a regular learner.”

This may be the explanation, although I do have two accounts and I am not really sure how they are different other than one of them seems to have course creator permissions and the other one doesn’t.

Aside – I don’t have access to the admin page to change this setting because we don’t seem to have it – I get an error “For security reasons, this URL is only accessible using localhost ( as the hostname.” - seems like a possible PHP error we are still trying to fix.

I don’t really know what “level” either of these accounts are considered to be because I don’t see where that is mentioned anywhere in my account, profile, dashboard, etc. They could both be student accounts for all I know. There’s one other account with these abilities and that is the person who set up the EdX. They are just accounts. One was created by the person who installed EdX, the other was made just by registering on the site like a user would.

Regardless, both accounts show the courses in the catalog even when they are listed as “none” and dated into the past.

I think the “solution” to this might very well be that we messed up our EdX installation from the beginning and have to start over. Could be a while before I know the answer to this question for real.

Anyone has any further insights into this, I’m all ears.

Maria – did not work.

Hi @Ian2012, what do you usually do to hide courses from the catalog? Is there a step missing from my recommendation?

If you can access Studio and edit a course, then you’re using a staff account.

One easy way to get a student account is to just sign up using a different email than one already used for an existing account.

I usually do the steps you provide. Change the dates to the past (start, end, enrollment start, and enrollment end), and set the course visibility to none. @ginasciworthy Please, answer the questions below:

  • Which version of edX did you install?
  • You can try go to studio and reindex your courses.
  • Are you using Elastic Search?
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