View a Course as a Student

Role Switch

You can temporarily switch your role by using the personal menu under your name on any homepage in D2L. Role Switch provides a generic view of the course using the role you select.

Switching your role

  1. Click on your name in the minibar. This will open a dropdown menu.Identifies name area in minibar.
  2. Click on View as Student.
    Indicates View as Student
    • If you don't see Student, click the word Change. Several role options will appear.
    • Select Student.Identifies alternative view menu.
NOTE: The “Student” role is likely the only role you will need to use.  
  1. Your role will be reflected in the minibar by text under your name and a bright orange icon with arrows on it.Identifies user role switch icon in the minibar.

End Role Switch

  1. Click your name in the minibar.
  2. Click on the to the right of "Viewing as a Student."Indicates the X to end the role switch.
NOTE: When you use Role Switch, you are automatically redirected to the course homepage view for that role.


A person with appropriate access can impersonate another user from the Classlist. Unlike Role Switch, Impersonate allows you to “log in” as a specific user. In this case, you will get a 100% accurate view of what a student sees in the course. It would be beneficial to impersonate a test student when confirming your newly designed course functions as intended.

NOTE: Instructors may only impersonate test students in a sandbox. The Impersonate option is not available to instructors in live courses. You can copy your course content into a sandbox to test it using impersonation. Only D2L administrators have the ability to impersonate other users.

Impersonating a user

  1. From within a sandbox course, click Collaboration > Classlist from the navbar.Indicates the Collaboration dropdown menu.
  2. Select Impersonate from the drop-down menu of "Test, Student."Indicates the Impersonate option in the dropdown menu.
  3. Click Yes on the confirmation screen.Indicates the Yes option on the Impersonate participant confirmation screen.
  4. The personal menu on the minibar displays the name "Student Test," with a bright orange icon next to the name.Identifies the Test student role in minibar.

Stop impersonating a user

  1. Click on Student Test in the minibar. A drop-down menu will appear.
  2. Click the “X” to stop impersonating the test student.Identifies the Test Student role and indicates the X used to stop impersonating.