Continuous Delivery Updates for March 2021

Students and Instructors

CourseLink – Support alert banner for older browsers

In order to be consistent with the Microsoft End of Support for Legacy Edge in March 2021, CourseLink is also ending browser support for Legacy Edge. To encourage clients to use CourseLink with a browser that provides robust support for all features, a warning banner appears in CourseLink if the client is using Legacy Edge.

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Learner profile card in New Evaluation Experience

When hovering over a learner’s name or profile picture in the new evaluation experience, the learner’s user profile card appears. The card displays the user’s online/offline status as well as links to: 

  • Email
  • Instant Message
  • User progress
  • User profile

Clicking any of the links in the profile card opens a new window.

Hovering over the name of profile image of a learner opens a profile card with links to Email and Instant Message the learner, plus User Progress and the learner’s User Profile.
Figure: Hovering over the name of profile image of a learner opens a profile card with links to Email and Instant Message the learner, plus User Progress and the learner’s User Profile.

Dropbox – Turnitin® support in New Evaluation Experience

The New Evaluation experience now supports Turnitin® Similarity and Turnitin® Grademark® in Dropbox. The existing Turnitin® workflows and functionality appear on the User Submissions page in the new experience. The Turnitin® workflows are also supported in the mobile experience.

Turnitin® Similarity and Turnitin® Grademark® feedback appears on the User Submissions page.
Figure: Turnitin® Similarity and Turnitin® Grademark® feedback appears on the User Submissions page.

Awards – Password-protected certificates

To prevent plagiarism and protect an organization’s intellectual and branding copyrights, all earned certificates downloaded from the Awards tool are now password-protected from editing. Each certificate is generated with a random password that is not displayed to users, preventing anyone from editing the certificate in Adobe® Acrobat® or Adobe Reader®. Previously, if an administrator or instructor uploaded a password protected certificate, any learner that downloaded the earned certificate could edit it in Adobe Acrobat or Adobe Reader. 

A password-protected certificate downloaded from the Awards tool
Figure: A password-protected certificate downloaded from the Awards tool

Insights – Additional cards and paging on the new Engagement Dashboard

  • There are three new cards on the user drill down page of the Engagement summary view, which provide the ability to see how key engagement metrics change over time for a single learner: 
    • The Grade over time trend chart displays the learner’s current grade for each week as a line graph, with a color-coded line for each course. Grades may be adjusted or calculated.
    • The Content view over time trend chart displays the number of content topic views for the learner for each week as a line graph, with a color-coded line for each course. 
    • The Access over time trend chart displays the number of course accesses for the learner for each week as a stacked area chart, with a color-coded area for each course.
  • The Active Courses table now includes paging on the user drill down page.
Summary view of the Learner Engagement Dashboard, with three new trend charts: Grade over time, Content view over time, and Access over time.
Figure: Summary view of the Learner Engagement Dashboard, with three new trend charts: Grade over time, Content view over time, and Access over time.

Calendar – Improvements to date and time selection web components

To improve the ease of use for clients using the date and time picker in CourseLink, there have been updates to the web components related to date and time selection. These changes are intended to provide better usability for keyboard users and better integration with assistive technology. Changes include:

  • Ability to use arrow keys rather than the Tab key to improve keyboard navigation and accessibility.
  • Aesthetic changes to hide unused elements until they are active.
  • New selectable values of 12:01 AM and 11:59PM in the time picker
  • New default values for Start, Due, and End dates.
  • The new Set to Today button inside the date picker replaces the Now button outside the date picker.

Note: There may be some instances of the older date picker remaining in CourseLink. These instances will be changed to the new date picker in a future release. 

When the date picker is open, the field to which it applies is highlighted and the picker dialog points to the field.
Figure: When the date picker is open, the field to which it applies is highlighted and the picker dialog points to the field.

Navigation and Themes – Create language specific custom links

instructors can create and display language specific custom links on the Navbar when designing courses. This feature provides learners a more complete translation experience.

Quizzes – Copy quiz workflow

Previously, to copy and continue editing a quiz, you had to navigate to the Manage Quizzes page, click the More Actions > Copy functionality, and then select the quiz you wanted to copy, rename it, and click Edit quiz after copy completes

This feature updates the copy quiz workflow to better align with Dropbox. Now, the copy functionality is available on the individual quiz drop-down menu. When you copy a quiz, the copied quiz is set to inactive (as per the original copy quiz workflow) and you are directed to the Edit Quiz screen to continue editing it. Now, the copy quiz workflow also copies over Special Access settings and aligned Learning Objectives.

Updated copy quiz workflow
Figure: Updated copy quiz workflow

Rubrics – Navigation Accessibility Improvements

To increase the value of Rubrics in CourseLink, there have been accessibility improvements to the rubric creation workflow:

  • In the Overall Score, screen reader users are now informed that the overall score levels are selectable items. When the user navigates between levels, the screen reader now reads the level order, level name, point level, level content, and selection status.
  • When reading descriptions in rubric table cells, screen readers now read the level name and the point value.
  • Radio buttons that are used to grade a criterion are now labelled for screen readers to include the criterion for which this radio button applies, and the corresponding rubric level name and point value for each radio button.
  • When an Add Feedback button has the focus, screen reader also reads the name of the associated criterion.
  • When the screen reader focus is on the outcomes icon in the criterion column, it indicates the standard associated with the criteria name and reads the tooltip content.
  • When a Criterion Score cell has the focus, screen readers now indicate that it is the score of the criterion name, the score, and that the user can press enter to adjust the score using a spin button. 
  • Screen readers now have access to controls for adding feedback to criteria when reading the criteria group table. The table summary now includes the following text: This table lists criteria and criteria group name in the first column. The first-row lists level names and includes scores if the rubric uses a numeric scoring method. You can give feedback on each criterion by tabbing to the add feedback buttons in the table.
  • When a page is loaded, the keyboard focus is now on the first focusable interface component; extra tab stops have been removed. 

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for February 2021

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Save Progress and Visual Enhancements

The Save button in the new Dropbox creation experience enables an instructor to save their progress while creating or editing a folder. Previously, Save and Close was the only option.

The scrollbars on the main and right-hand panels now appear thinner and less noticeable, providing more vertical space when creating or editing a folder.

The name of the folder appears in the immersive navbar along the top of the page.

The name of the Dropbox folder on the immersive navbar and the less obtrusive scrollbar in the new Dropbox creation experience
Figure: The name of the Dropbox folder on the immersive navbar and the less obtrusive scrollbar in the new Dropbox creation experience

Brightspace Pulse – Course access events added to Brightspace Data Platform

To allow administrators and instructors to see when learners access courses from Brightspace Pulse, the app now sends course access events to the Brightspace Data Platform (BDP). The BDP stores these events, and then computes and stores the aggregated data, which can then be accessed through various course reporting tools, such as Classlist, Class Progress, Engagement Dashboard, and the Course Overview widget. For example, in Classlist, the Last Accessed column now displays a timestamp when a learner accesses a course from Brightspace Pulse.

Grades – Additional features for Mastery view of the grade book

The first time you use the Mastery View table page, a message appears under the page title indicating the default calculation method for the data in the view and provides a link to the Settings page, where you can change the calculation method.

If you change the calculation method after evaluation data has been collected, a warning message appears to indicate that the evaluations must be recalculated according to the newly selected method.  Any prior evaluations with manual overrides or feedback are not affected by changing calculation methods. If outcome overall achievements are already published, recalculations for the newly selected method are also immediately visible to learners.

When viewing the Outcomes Progress Evidence page from a mobile device, the evidence appears in a responsive display format for the smaller screen. 

Quick Eval – Homepage widget

Quick Eval can now be added to course homepages as a widget to allow instructors to view and access any submissions awaiting evaluation. The Quick Eval widget displays a list of up to six activities with submissions to evaluate. The activities are sorted by due date, with the earliest date first. The icon indicator in the widget shows the type of activity (dropbox, discussion, or quiz), and the number of unevaluated submissions for each activity. The due date and course information are also visible below the title of each activity.

The Quick Eval widget displaying unevaluated activities
Figure: The Quick Eval widget displaying unevaluated activities

Rubrics – Warning dialog for partial evaluations

Previously, if an instructor attempted to publish a partially completed rubric evaluation, the partial evaluation dialog appeared. If the instructor tapped Enter on their keyboard, the partial evaluation was published. 
Now, the default button behavior has changed so that tapping Enter on the page returns the user to the rubric to complete the evaluation. This change adds a verification layer to reconsider their action and ensure that instructors are not mistakenly publishing incomplete evaluations. 

The partial evaluation warning dialog appears the same, but has updated default behavior.
Figure: The partial evaluation warning dialog appears the same, but has updated default behavior.

Respondus – New Live Proctoring Feature

Earlier this month, the Respondus Live proctoring feature was released to instructors.

This feature leverages a video conferencing system (Zoom, MS Teams, etc.) and allows instructors to proctor students in real-time during online exams, tests, and quizzes.

This feature is intended for small classes where an instructor can view all students on the screen at once.

For more information on this new feature as well as instructions on how to enable it, please see the Live Remote Invigilation of CourseLink Quizzes with Respondus LockDown Browser section of the Tips for Live Remote Invigilation with Zoom or Teams page on OpenEd’s Remote Teaching & Learning website.

Zoom – Live Transcription (Closed Captioning) Service

Earlier this month, the Zoom Live Transcription Service was released.

The Live Transcription (closed captioning) service is available for Educational/Pro account holders. This service automatically captions speakers in Zoom meetings, adding their text to the bottom of the meeting window, as well as making a live transcript available in its own panel.

Visit the Zoom: Live Transcription Service page for details on configuration and setup options.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for January 2021

Students and Instructors

Respondus LockDown Browser for Chromebooks

A beta release of Respondus LockDown Browser for Chromebook is now available for CourseLink.

Instructors

During the beta period, instructors will have to enable the use of the Chromebook version on a per exam basis.

  • Go to the LockDown Browser Dashboard within CourseLink
  • Select “Require Respondus LockDown Browser for this exam”
  • Expand “Advanced Settings” and select “Allow students to use LockDown Browser for Chromebook (beta)”
  • Save the exam settings for LockDown Browser

Students

Installing LockDown Browser on your Chromebook is easy.  

  • Log into the Chromebook and start Google Chrome
  • Log into CourseLink and navigate to the exam that requires LockDown Browser
  • Select the link for downloading and installing LockDown Browser
  • From the Chrome web store, select “Add to Chrome” to install the LockDown Browser Extension
  • Note: during the beta, this extension will only work with quizzes an instructor has enabled for use with LockDown Browser for Chromebook

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Multiple Rubric Support in Consistent Evaluation Experience

This feature is a continuation of the feature that was introduced in the December 2020 release.

If a Dropbox folder includes multiple rubrics, they are all visible to instructors using the Consistent Evaluation Experience. Instructors are also able to choose the default scoring rubric. Previously, the Consistent Evaluation Experience would only display one rubric on the assignment evaluation screen.

Insights – Settings and Filter Improvements on the new Engagement Dashboard

The new Settings page has two tabs: Summary Metrics and Result Table Metrics. The Summary Metrics tab contains the Roles filter, which enables you to select the learner roles you want to include in dashboard data. All roles that you exclude are not included in any data query on the Engagement Dashboard. The Summary Metrics tab also enables you to determine which cards are included in the Dashboard display and set your own threshold for the System Access metric. By default, all the cards are included on the dashboard. 

All cards appear in the selection list, and all are selected by default.
Figure: All cards appear in the selection list, and all are selected by default.  

Widgets – Widget Sandboxing to Enhance Content Security

To enhance the security of Widgets that execute scripts to create extra-rich HTML experiences (such as objects that can execute JavaScript), there is now a sandboxing feature that creates a secure iFrame around the HTML file. This will allow an HTML file to execute scripts (such as JavaScript) within the iFrame only but will prevent them from executing outside the iFrame (against the domain). This enables some flexibility in creating rich content, but reassurance for the security- conscious that end user information remains secure in all situations.

The Widget Security area of the Widget Properties dialog box.
Figure: The Widget Security area of the Widget Properties dialog box.

Course Export – Export File Upload Attribute for Written Response Questions

Written Response quiz questions that allow for file upload can now be imported and exported from CourseLink. With the ability to import and export these questions users can share them with users from other instances of CourseLink (D2L Brightspace). 

Grades – Additional Features for Mastery View in Grades

To increase the value of the Mastery view of Grades, originally released in December 2020, this release updates and adds the following new features:

  • Three new calculation methods: Highest LevelMost Recent Level, and Decaying Average.
  • Publish All button for overall levels of achievement for all outcomes to all learners.
  • Search by Student Name field.
  • A warning when the user attempts to change the default achievement scale.
  • Removal of the Clear Default option in the Achievement Scale dialog.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for December 2020

Instructors Only

Dropbox- Consistent evaluation experience

The consistent evaluation experience for Dropbox brings consistency to evaluating in Brightspace Learning Environment for all assessable tools . This feature provides an opt-in experience for users to familiarize themselves with the new experience when evaluating in Dropbox. In future releases this evaluation experience will become available in additional tools.

The default value for this configuration is On(Opt-In).

No changes have been made to page navigation.  The user context bar now includes a menu to choose a learner, and another menu to choose a submission. On the user submission list, files are now grouped by submission without repeating comments to make it easier to distinguish between submissions. The evaluation pane divider is now draggable to suit a user’s preferences and screen size. Rubrics are now located at the top of the page, and assignment details are in the ellipsis menu. The overall grade remains as an icon that indicates if that grade is tied to the gradebook. Existing outcomes and competency web components are also visible. Publish, Save Draft, and Next Student options continue to function as before.

Instructors should wait to turn on the Consistent Evaluation experience in this release if they:  

  • Use TurnItIn – No integration with Turnitin is available in this release of the consistent evaluation experience 
  • Use Anonymous Marking/Grading – Learner name display does not respect the Anonymous Marking setting 
  • May have multiple rubrics attached to assignments – Only one rubric displays in the consistent evaluation experience 
  • Use large rubrics with many levels or criteria – Large rubrics may have a reduced usability due to the way in which the new experience displays rubrics.  All levels and criteria display, though large rubrics may require more scrolling
  • Use Group assignments extensively – There is no access to view group members from within the consistent evaluation experience  
  • Use the Edit a Copy function to annotate text or HTML submissions – This option is not available in the consistent evaluation experience
  • Require access to Student ID (or Class Progress) while evaluating – These options are not accessible from within the consistent evaluation experience 

These items will be addressed in future updates to the Consistent Evaluation experience.

Instructor view when evaluating assignments in the consistent evaluation experience.
Figure: Instructor view when evaluating assignments in the consistent evaluation experience.

CourseLink – Updated video and audio player in Content

To improve accessibility and create a consistent user experience, a new audio and video media player has been added to Content.

The new media player offers the following features:

  • Consistent keyboard controls, and screen reader support.
  • Keyboard controls improvements and fixes to known issues. The previous media player had an issue where keyboard focus could become stuck in the caption language selection menu.
  • Screen reader improvements with the new media player include off-screen messages for screen readers to announce when a video has loaded or if there was an error loading the video.

Note: Download will not be turned on by default.

The new video player in Content showing the playback speed option.
Figure: The new video player in Content showing the playback speed option.
The new audio player appears in Content
Figure: The new audio player appears in Content

Grades – Mastery view in the Gradebook now available

The Mastery view of the Gradebook provides visibility into additional details of learner performance beyond what is available using traditional grades associated with an activity. Using outcomes associated with various types of assessments (such as quiz questions, rubric criterion rows, assignments or discussions), additional dimensions of performance can be recorded.  The Mastery page provides instructors with information about the overall achievement for leaners in their course. The achievement is related to learning outcomes and standards associated to assessment activities and helps instructors to quickly identify learners who are potentially at risk. The page provides a quick holistic view of aggregated performance across all learners in the course for all outcomes assessed in the course. Instructors can click on individual table cells of the Mastery view to drill-down into individual learners’ performance and view evidence associated with each outcome. In that detailed view, instructors can use their professional judgement to manually override the calculated suggested level of overall achievement.   

Note:  This option is hidden if learning outcomes are not being used in the course. 

The Mastery view table displays evaluated outcomes as the columns of the table and learners enrolled in the course as rows of the table.  In the columns for each outcome, there is a color and text indication of the suggested overall level of achievement based on the currently selected calculation method. The color of each cell and the text label is based on the color and level name defined in the default Achievement Scale in the Learning Outcomes tool.  

The Mastery view with three outcome columns of evaluated activities, and several unevaluated outcome columns for each learner.
Figure: The Mastery view with three outcome columns of evaluated activities, and several unevaluated outcome columns for each learner. 

Within each achievement cell, there are several indicators of the status of the learner’s progress toward the achievement, including: 

  • Number of activities evaluated (out of the total aligned) 
  • Suggested overall level achievement (or manually overridden level of achievement) 
  • Manual override indicator in the form of an asterisk beside the overall achievement label. 
  • Out of Date icon (if newer evaluations have been made since a manual override was recorded or a feedback is added) 
  • Published/Not published icons to indicate the visibility status to the learner 
Displays a single cell of the mastery view, the manual override asterisk, the Out of Date icon, and the Not Published icon
Figure: Displays a single cell of the mastery view, the manual override asterisk, the Out of Date icon, and the Not Published icon

Insights – Additional cards on the New Engagement Dashboard

The new Engagement dashboard contains visualizations that provide insight into how users are engaging with their courses. Using this information, users can identify at-risk learners and intervene to get them back on track. To increase the value of the Engagement dashboard, originally released in March 2019, and updated in November 2020, this release updates and adds the following new features:

  • The Discussion Summary pie chart indicates the number of discussion threads created, replied to, and read. If you hover over a pie segment, a popup appears with a number and description of the segment. This is helpful for understanding the proportion of passive or active social engagement.  If you click a segment, the rest of the Engagement dashboard automatically filters the returned data for the learners represented by the segment. This is also summarized in the results table.
  • The System Access summary card indicates the number of users who have not accessed the system in the previous 14 days. This can include access of Brightspace Pulse or Brightspace through their internet browser. This is also summarized in the results table.
  • The ability to take action from the dashboard by exporting the results table or emailing one or many users.  Users require permission to see and send emails at the Org Level in order to take advantage of the email option. 

Note: The default setting for this feature continues to be Opt-in.

The Engagement Dashboard with the Discussion Activity and System Access areas highlighted.
Figure: The Engagement Dashboard with the Discussion Activity and System Access areas highlighted.  

Quizzes – Improved workflow for creating multi-select questions

As part of the ongoing initiative to improve the quiz creation experience for instructors, this release streamlines the interface for creating multi-select questions, making the workflow simpler and more intuitive.

When instructors initially launch the Question Editor to create a multi-select question, the interface displays the two main components of a multi-select question: the question and potential answers. Selecting a field displays a pop-up toolbar for formatting the text and adding images, links, and graphical equations. As each field is completed, the preview pane displays how the question and answers appear to learners. 

Next, instructors can choose to click Options to add the following optional information to the multi-select question: Add FeedbackAdd HintAdd Short Description, and Add Enumeration.

Instructors can then choose to randomize the order of answers, assign points, and determine how points are assigned to blanks.

For determining how points are assigned to blanks, a new grading type is available in the classic and new multi-select question experience: Correct Answers, Limited Selections. For this grading type, points are evenly distributed across correct answers only. The number of selections allowed is limited to the number of correct answers. Learners earn partial points for each correct answer selected. 

Question text and answers in the new multi-select question experience
Figure: Question text and answers in the new multi-select question experience

Quizzes – Improvements to the ability to retake incorrect questions in quizzes

Building on the previous Quizzes – Retake incorrect questions in subsequent attempts, there are several improvements to increase the value of the feature: 

  • Instructors can now identify retaken attempts in the Attempt log. 
  • Instructors can now identify a Retaken Attempt while grading a quiz in the Quizzes tool on the User tab and the Attempts tab.   
The Attempt log indicates the retaken attempts for the quiz.
Figure: The Attempt log indicates the retaken attempts for the quiz.
The Users tab indicates the retaken attempts for the quiz.
Figure: The Users tab indicates the retaken attempts for the quiz.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for November 2020

Students and Instructors

Brightspace Pulse – Dark mode for Android

Brightspace Pulse for Android now displays in Dark mode when Dark mode is enabled on your Android device. Using this mode can reduce eye strain and conserve battery power on your device.

Dark mode in Brightspace Pulse for Android
Figure: Dark mode in Brightspace Pulse for Android

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Date Picker Change

This feature updates the date picker component for the new Dropbox creation experience. The new date picker has a more streamlined design and requires a slight workflow change: to clear a date/time, the X alongside the time field has been replaced by a Clear option inside the calendar.

New date picker component on the Create and Edit Dropbox page.
Figure: New date picker component on the Create and Edit Dropbox page.

Grades – Display total points in Manage Grades

To improve usability of the Grades tool and reduce calculation errors, Manage Grades now includes total points for grade categories and Final Calculated Grade. Previously, there was no indicator of the total points while users were managing their grade book, and instructors were required to manually add up the points from all grade items to check if the total matched their syllabus.

For weighted grade books, the total weight is displayed in addition to the total points. For formula grade books, the manually-entered max points is displayed instead of the total points. Totals do not include bonus grade items and do support grade item dropping.

Insights – New version of the Engagement Dashboard

To increase the value of the Engagement dashboard, originally released in March 2019, this release updates and adds the following new features: 

  • The default setting for this feature is now Opt-in. Previously, the default setting was Off for the new Engagement Dashboard because clients had the previous version by default.  
  • By default, the most recently accessed 10 courses appear on the report; users can dynamically add or remove courses while interacting with the dashboard. There is a pop-up that appears when a user accesses the Engagement Dashboard that summarizes what is being shown in the default view.  
  • Grades appear as a bar chart. If you click on one or more bars, the dashboard filters the returned data for users and courses where the user has a grade in the selected range.  
  • Course Access appears as a bar chart. If you click one or more bars, the dashboard filters the returned data for the users and courses where the user has accessed a course in that time range. 
  • Time in Content appears as a scatterplot of the time in content compared to the current grade for each user in each course in view. If you click a quadrant, the dashboard filters on the users and their courses in that quadrant. 
    • Data points in the top left quadrant plot users that are getting an above average grade and spending below average time in the content. 
    • Data points in the top right quadrant plot users that are getting an above average grade and spending above average time in the content. 
    • Data points in the lower left quadrant plot users that are getting a below average grade and spending below average time in the content. 
    • Data points in the lower right quadrant plot users that are getting a below average grade and spending above average time in the content.  
  • The User Table below the dashboard includes the learners included in the cards above and dynamically updates as the dashboard is used. For example, if you click to filter on a bar in the Grades chart, the learners represented by that bar appear in the user table. Table columns include NameCoursesAverage GradeAverage Time in Content (minutes).  

Quiz Builder – Quiz preview

Instructors can now view a preview of their quiz from Quiz Builder. Clicking the new Preview button on the Add/Edit Questions view of the quiz opens a quiz preview attempt in a new tab for a complete view of how the quiz appears to learners. 

The Preview button appears in Quiz Builder
Figure: The Preview button appears in Quiz Builder

Quizzes – Retake incorrect questions in subsequent attempts

This feature introduces a new option for Quizzes Attempt settings that allows students to only retake their incorrectly answered questions from previous quiz attempts. Instructors can select this new option in the Assessment tab of a quiz. When the Retake Incorrect Questions Only check box is selected for subsequent quiz attempts, each learner only sees the questions they had previously answered incorrectly in the same order as the initial attempt (including quizzes with random sections and random questions). When grading a Retake Incorrect Questions Only quiz attempt, the instructor can only provide a score for the questions answered on this attempt.

A learner’s score for a Retake Incorrect Questions Only attempt remains at minimum, the score they had on the previous attempt. Correctly answered questions on the Retake Incorrect Questions Only attempt add to the learner’s attempts score. The Quiz Overall Score is calculated using the existing Highest/Lowest/First/Last/Average aggregation functions. The “Average” aggregation function can be used to give the student partial marks for questions that were not answered correctly on the first attempt.

The Retake Incorrect Questions Only option can be selected when setting Attempts Allowed
Figure: The Retake Incorrect Questions Only option can be selected when setting Attempts Allowed 

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for October 2020

Instructor Only

Automated Quiz Extension Tool

OpenEd, in partnership with SAS, has developed an automated quiz extension tool that will automatically apply a quiz extension using Special Access in quizzes for students registered with SAS.

The tool is easy to use, simply add the word SAS to the quiz footer.

For more information, please see the Automated Quiz Extension Tool CourseLink Support documentation page.

Quick Eval – User Interface Improvements

Quick Eval is now listed in the Course Admin page under the Assessment category.

Quiz Builder – Question Import Improvements

This feature updates question importing options in Quiz Builder. When importing questions from Question Library, users can now use the default end of quiz location for the questions, or choose to import the questions into a section. Previously, all questions imported from the Question Library were placed at the end of the Quiz by default, with no ability to select a specific quiz section.

The Import drop-down menu now shows the Import to Section option on the Browse Question Library screen
Figure: The Import drop-down menu now shows the Import to Section option on the Browse Question Library screen

Quizzes – Editing Quizzes with Previous Attempts

Points for all past quiz attempts are no longer modified when edits are made that affect the overall points and/or the grading calculations for a quiz. In the previous release, this update extended only to quizzes with attempts started after the June 2020 release. Now, all previous quizzes with attempts will display the quiz and grading calculations that appeared to the learner at the exact time they made the attempt.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for September 2020

Instructors and Students

CourseLink Platform – Refreshed Components Visual Design and Accessibility Updates

To establish a modern and consistent visual design across products and tools in the Brightspace platform, this release refreshes the design of toggles.

Note: Due to the broad scope of the refreshed visual design, some user interface components were refreshed in the August 2020 release. As this work continues, you will see more user interface components refreshed in upcoming releases.

To improve accessibility in user interface components, screen readers now correctly identify switches in CourseLink as toggles. This helps more accurately identify the state of a toggle to users as “pressed” (on) or “not pressed” (off). Previously, switches were identified as radio buttons that were “On” or “Off,” which was not as accurate or helpful to users. 

Note: Implementations of this update may differ slightly between types of screen readers.

For example, when a toggle is on, an NVDA screen reader now reads the information as:
Availability   column 4  Accelerator  toggle button  pressed  checked  

And when a toggle is off, an NVDA screen reader now reads the information as:
Availability  column 4  Accelerator  toggle button  not pressed 

The previous visual design of a toggle
Figure: The previous visual design of a toggle
The new visual design of a toggle
Figure: The new visual design of a toggle

Brightspace Pulse for iOS – View Activity Feed Posts and Comments

To keep up to date on course activity, learners can now read Activity Feed posts and comments, if used in the course, in Brightspace Pulse for iOS. Learners can also receive Activity Feed notifications. For example, in courses with Activity Feed enabled, instructors can use Activity Feed to post reminders about upcoming assignments and links to course materials. Learners then receive notifications about those posts in Brightspace Pulse, allowing them to view post details from the course homepages. Future releases will allow learners to post or reply to posts, if they have the appropriate permissions.

From the Courses tab, tapping a course displays the course homepage. The latest post and any associated comments display in the Activity Feed.

From the Notifications tab, tapping an Activity Feed notification displays the associated post or comment in the Activity Feed.

Discussions – Visual Word Count for Discussion Posts

A visual word count is now visible in the HTML Editor for discussion posts. All words in a discussion post are counted and include filler words such as “the,” “if,” and “to.” 

The word count is dynamically displayed to learners while they type in the HTML Editor and it also appears next to posts they have created in the Discussions Reading View. Learners can view the word count for their posts only.

For instructors, the word count appears on the Assessment page during the discussions assessment process and it also appears inline with the post details in the Discussions Reading View. Instructors can view the word count for all user posts.

A discussion post with the dynamically displayed word count
Figure: A discussion post with the dynamically displayed word count

Instructors Only

Classlist Linked Microsoft Security Group

Classlist Linked Microsoft Security Groups are the result of a project between CCS and OpenEd. These security groups create and maintain Microsoft Security Groups whose membership match a linked CourseLink Classlist. The security group memberships are updated daily, ensuring any new or dropped students are reflected within a 24-hour window throughout the semester. These security groups can then be can be used to grant and limit access to O365 resources such as Stream videos, OneDrive resources and Teams – Live Events.

Please see the step-by-step instructions on the OpenEd support website for this topic: Microsoft Security Group

Dropbox – Additional Functionality in the New Creation Experience

Building on the functionality added to the new create and edit assignment experience in the August 2020 release, you can now do the following:

  1. Add special access conditions to assignments
The new Dropbox creation experience with Special Access functionality
Figure: The new Dropbox creation experience with Special Access functionality
  1. Receive a notification email when assignments are submitted
The new Dropbox creation experience with Notification Email functionality
Figure: The new Dropbox creation experience with Notification Email functionality

Class/User Progress -Include Pulse Activity in Usage Data

Learner activity data is now captured more accurately through the addition of a new system usage metric. Previously, Pulse usage was not tracked, and learners who accessed their courses through the app were misrepresented as having low engagement and could not access conditionally released content.

These changes affect the following areas of Brightspace:

  • Class Progress has a new System Access performance indicator, which displays the number of times each course participant has accessed the system through the Learning Environment or Pulse in the last 30 days. Instructors can add System Access to the Class Progress dashboard by clicking Settings.
  • User Progress has a new System Access History section, which displays the number of times the user has accessed the system through the Learning Environment or Pulse in the last 30 days. Instructors can select System Access History to display in the User Progress report by clicking Settings
Class Progress dashboard showing System Access indicator
Figure: Class Progress dashboard showing System Access indicator

Question Library – Attach Files in Arithmetic and Significant Figures Questions

Building on the attach files in Written Response questions functionality released in the August 2020 release, when creating arithmetic and significant figures questions, instructors can now allow learners to include external files with their responses and record audio or video responses when answering these question types.

When grading a quiz, similar to the behavior in the Discussions tool, instructors can view a list of attachments, download them, or open them in another tab. When reviewing their submission in Submission View, the learner can see their uploaded attachment if allowed to see their responses.

To support attachment responses, Quizzes data sets and quiz reporting enhancements will be released in the November 2020 release. 

The updated Arithmetic questions screen
Figure: The updated Arithmetic questions screen

Question Library – Search for and select Questions in Question Library Sections

This feature enables instructors to search for sections in Question Library by section title, as well as the ability to select and import the section in its entirety from the search results list. Previously, you could only search for questions by question text and you could not select sections in the search results.

The updated search and select capability in Question Library
Figure: The updated search and select capability in Question Library

Quiz Builder – Enhanced Question Reordering

To simplify the movement and reordering of questions in Quiz Builder, a new Move To option is visible when a question is selected. The Move To option allows questions to be moved to the Top of the QuizBottom of the Quiz, or to a specific section within the quiz.

Previously, to move multiple questions into a section, instructors had to individually drag the questions into the desired section. Now, instructors can select multiple questions and move them all at once using the Move To menu. The drag and drop reordering of questions has not been affected by this feature and remains available.

The Move To option is visible once quiz questions are selected
Figure: The Move To option is visible once quiz questions are selected

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for August 2020

Instructors Only

Zoom Resources

Zoom has the following short videos to help teachers get up and running:

Also, check out the web conferencing comparison chart and resources on the OpenEd Remote Teaching and Learning website.

Quizzes – Question Library – Attach Files using Written Response Questions

When creating a written response question, instructors can now allow learners to upload files in their answers and include embedded images. Learners can also record audio or video responses when answering written response question types.

When grading a quiz, similar to the behavior in the Discussions tool, instructors can download and open these attachments in another tab. Bulk download is not available at this time.

When learners are reviewing their quiz submissions, if they are allowed to view their quiz responses, they can view their uploaded attachments.

The maximum file size for a single file or embedded image attached to a quiz response is set to 102400 KB (100 MB). The maximum file size for all files attached or embedded in a single quiz question response is set to 102400 KB (100 MB).

The updated Written Response question creation screen
Figure: The updated Written Response question creation screen

Quizzes – User Experience Updates for Editing Quizzes with Attempts

To improve the user experience for instructors who edit quizzes with previous attempts by learners, the following updates have been made:

  • Points for past quiz attempts are no longer modified when edits are made that affect the overall points and/or the grading calculations for a quiz. A learner’s grade on previous quiz attempts must now be changed directly by the instructor using the Update All Attempts workflow. Previously, the points for all past quiz attempts were modified automatically, which could alter a learner’s grade unexpectedly.
  • Warning messages now appear when editing a quiz question with previous attempts to clearly communicate to instructors that editing quiz questions does not affect the content or automatically change the score of learners’ past attempts.
A warning message appears when accessing the Add/Edit Questions workflow
Figure: A warning message appears when accessing the Add/Edit Questions workflow

Dropbox – Additional Functionality – Release Conditions

Building on the functionality added to the new create and edit Dropbox experience in the July release, you can now do the following:

  • Attach release conditions to an assignment
The create and edit Dropbox page with the Release Conditions functionality
Figure: The create and edit Dropbox page with the Release Conditions functionality

Dropbox – Copy Folder Option

This feature adds the ability to copy existing folders. Instructors can select the Copy Assignment option in the drop-down menu for an existing folder to quickly create new folders. This feature copies all settings of an existing folder except the associated grade item and Turnitin settings.

The Copy Assignment option appears in the drop-down menu for existing assignments
Figure: The Copy Assignment option appears in the drop-down menu for existing assignments

Brightspace Assignment Grader – End-of-life

Effective August 15, 2020, the Assignment Grader mobile app is no longer available to new users. Existing users may continue to use the app if they have it installed, but no further updates or support will be made available by D2L and the app will be removed from app stores. As an alternative mobile grading option, D2L recommends using the Quick Eval tool in CourseLink.

Brightspace ePortfolio mobile app – End-of-life

Effective August 30, 2020, the Brightspace ePortfolio mobile app is no longer available to new users. Existing users may continue to use the app if they have it installed, but no further updates or support will be made available by D2L and the app will be removed from the iOS App Store and the Google Play Apps store. Note that the Brightspace ePortfolio is still available for use – only the mobile app version is unavailable.

Checklists – Copy a checklist

Instructors can now perform copy actions for checklists. You can copy a whole checklist, a checklist category (including all items within it), or individual items in a checklist.

Classlist – User Experience Changes

When adding participants to a Classlist using the Add users interface, search results now include users who are currently enrolled in the course. Previously, enrolled users were not displayed in these search results. On the search results page an icon displays beside an enrolled user’s name to indicate their enrollment status. Instructors can also use the drop-down menu beside each username to update a user’s enrollment status, remove them from the class or change the role they were enrolled with.

Notifications – Deleted Content Links to Message

Notifications for content that is subsequently hidden/deleted/conditionally released are now removed from the CourseLink notifications area on the minibar. Notifications that arrive via email or text notifications, or in Brightspace Pulse push notifications, now provide a link to the Course Table of Contents with a message that states ‘Item not available’. Previously, clicking the link created a 404 Not Authorized error.

Outcomes Management – Competency Tool is Hidden when Learning Outcomes is Enabled

In CourseLink, it is only possible to use the Competency tool or the Learning Outcomes tool in a course. If you are using one, all instances of the other are now hidden from view. For a new, empty shell course, both the Competency tool and Learning Outcomes tool appear in the Course Administration page. However, as soon as you decide to use the Learning Outcomes tool or the Competency tool, then the link to the other tool is hidden.

The Competency tool is considered to be in use when at least one learning objective is aligned to activities in the course. When this is the case, the Learning Outcomes tool is hidden on the Course Administration page.

The Learning Outcomes tool is considered to be in use when an intent list is created by importing or creating at least one learning outcome in the course. When this is the case, the Competencies tool is hidden on the Course Administation page, and the Objectives Progress column in Class Progress is no longer visible.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for July 2020

Students and Instructors

CourseLink – Supported Browsers

  • Brightspace Learning Environment supports HTML5 Video Player and does not rely on Adobe Flash and Adobe Flash Player.
  • The concept of a Maintenance browser is removed from the CourseLink (D2L) Platform Requirements documentation, as this previously related to the now unsupported Microsoft Internet Explorer browser. All supported browsers (Chrome, Edge, Firefox, and Safari) deploy using a continuous delivery model and CourseLink supports the latest versions of these browsers.
  • As of the July 2020 release, Firefox ESR is no longer a supported browser, due to extremely low usage. To support clients through this transition, D2L will fix high-priority issues for Firefox 68 ESR (until the end of September 2020) and Firefox 78 ESR (until the January 2021 release).
  • D2L’s browser version check now displays warnings for browsers earlier than the following versions:
    • Chrome 81 (released in April 2020)
    • Chromium-based Edge 81 (released in April 2020)
    • Edge Legacy 44 (not receiving any further updates)
    • Safari 13 (released in September 2019)
    • Firefox 76 (releases May 5th, 2020)

You can access CourseLink with older versions of our supported browsers; however, D2L does not test CourseLink against these older versions. This means you may encounter unexpected user interface behavior and appearance, or broken and unsupported functionality. In most cases, D2L does not fix software defects experienced in unsupported browser versions. For an optimal experience that offers better performance, accessibility, and security, D2L strongly recommends that all users access CourseLink with a supported browser.

Widgets – Pinned Tab on My Courses Widget

A new Pinned tab now appears in the My Courses widget (Update Sort Logic view only). The Pinned tab allows learners and instructors to create a curated view of their pinned courses.

The Pinned tab appears in the widget only after a user pins a course in the Course Selector. The tab remains in view until all courses are unpinned. The My Courses widget remembers the last viewed tab and shows that same tab the next time the homepage is viewed. This makes it easy for instructors and learners who only wish to view pinned courses to see those courses upon login.

The Pinned tab appears in the My Courses widget when users pin courses
Figure: The Pinned tab appears in the My Courses widget when users pin courses

User Management – Character limit enforced for text fields in User Profile

This feature was originally released for the User Management tool in January 2020. This update now enforces the 4000 character limit for long text fields in the User Profile page.

In the January 2020 release, reasonable character limits for long text fields in the User Profile page were added. The following Personal Info fields were limited to 4000 characters each:

  • Interests/Hobbies
  • Favorite Music
  • Favorite Books
  • Favorite TV Shows
  • Favorite Movies
  • Favorite Quotations
  • Favorite Websites
  • Future Goals
  • Most Memorable Learning Experience

After the January 2020 release, if users had information in these fields that exceeded 4000 characters, it continued to display.

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Competencies in the New Dropbox Creation Experience

This update includes the capability to add and remove learning objectives from the Competencies tool when used with the new create and edit Dropbox experience.

The new experience also displays a warning if a learning objective does not have an associated rubric, as objectives must have an associated rubric in order to be evaluated.

The create and edit Assignments page with the Manage Learning Objectives functionality and warning
Figure: The create and edit Assignments page with the Manage Learning Objectives functionality and warning

When a user opts in to the new experience, the Manage Learning Objectives functionality appears under the Evaluation & Feedback accordion if the Competencies tool is enabled and if the user is not using the Learning Outcomes tool.

Email – Verify Email Address Changes

Previously, users were able to add a forwarding email address, or add a reply to address without verifying their email address.

Now, when users add a forwarding email address, or add a reply to address, they receive an email prompting them to verify their email address. When sent, the username that requested the email change appears in the verification email.

Rubrics – Accessibility improvements in Rubric creation workflow

This update includes the following accessibility improvements in the rubric creation workflow:

  • When you change the names of levels in the rubric create or edit experience, screen readers now read the updated name rather than the original default level names.
  • Screen readers now indicate when new levels, criterion, groups, and overall score levels are added to a rubric. Previously, there was no loading progress indicator.
  • Screen readers now state that there is a new level, criterion, group, or overall score level.
  • The keyboard navigation tab sequence is improved when navigating to the Add and Cancel buttons in the Outcomes Picker window.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939

Continuous Delivery Updates for May 2020

Students and Instructors

Brightspace Pulse – Multi-Account Login Support

Brightspace Pulse for iOS and Android now supports the ability to simultaneously log in to multiple Brightspace Pulse accounts. Learners can easily switch between multiple Brightspace instances without logging out from Brightspace Pulse. In addition, learners can receive notifications from all of their accounts in Brightspace Pulse.

This feature is useful to learners who may be:

  • supplementing a degree with a preferred course offering at a partner institution
  • simultaneously pursuing a degree and professional development at work

In Brightspace Pulse, a new menu icon or your organization’s logo displays in the navigation bar. Tap the menu icon or logo to open a menu with options to switch accounts, add new accounts, and access settings. The current active account is indicated by a checkmark icon.

If there is at least one outstanding notification for any of the accounts, a red notification dot displays on the menu icon or organization logo in the navigation bar.

Menu options that display when you tap the menu icon or organization logo in the navigation bar
Figure: Menu options that display when you tap the menu icon or organization logo in the navigation bar

Brightspace Pulse – Pin and Unpin Courses (updated)

To help learners more easily find their current courses in Brightspace Pulse for Android, learners can now pin and unpin courses from the Courses screens. Pinning a course ensures it remains at the top of the screen for easy access. Previously, learners could only pin and unpin their courses in Brightspace Learning Environment and Brightspace Pulse for iOS.

To pin or unpin a course in Brightspace Pulse, do one of the following:

  • From the Courses screen, tap the ellipses () icon in a course tile.
  • From the Course Homepage screen, tap the ellipses () icon at the top of the screen.
  • From the list of actions, tap Pin or Unpin. A pinned course is denoted by a pulse_pin_iconPin icon. Unpinning a course removes the pin icon.
The Courses screen displaying a pinned course tile with the ellipses (...) icon and pin icon
Figure: The Courses screen displaying a pinned course tile with the ellipses () icon and pin icon

Instructors Only

Microsoft Teams Meetings Integration

Instructors with University Central Accounts can create, schedule, and share Teams Meetings from within CourseLink. 

Add the instructor only widget to your course by making a copy of your homepage or editing an existing copy.

  1. On your homepage, in the MS Teams Meeting widget, click Create meeting link.
  2. Sign in with your account if you haven’t previously signed in. 
  3. Click Create meeting link.
  4. Add a meeting title and select a date and time.
  5. Click Create
  6. Click Copy to copy the dynamically generated meeting link.
  7. Paste the meeting link into your course announcement, discussion, calendar event, or email. 
Microsoft Teams Meetings sign in page
Figure: Microsoft Teams Meetings sign in page

Calendar – Bulk Delete Items

To create parity with other tools and improve workflow, the Calendar tool now offers a Delete interface. Previously, it was impossible to bulk delete calendar items. This change enables users to multi-select and delete calendar items using the More Actions menu.

The Delete option appears in the More Actions drop-down menu.
Figure: The Delete option appears in the More Actions drop-down menu.

Export Course Components – Org Unit Code Included in File Name

The default file name for exported courses now includes the Org Unit Code of the course being exported. The new file name convention follows the format: D2LExport_{OrgUnitId}_{OrgUnitCode}_{Timestamp}.zip. Previously, exported course names followed the format: D2LExport_{OrgUnitId}_{Timestamp}.zip.

Learning Outcomes – Transfer Rubric Feedback to General Feedback

Rubrics can be set to three types of visibility to learners: Always visible, Visible after assessment, and Always hidden. When a rubric is set to hidden, there is now a checkbox to indicate that you want the feedback provided on hidden rubrics to be transferred back to general feedback. The feedback from a rubric with this option enabled will appear to the learner as part of the general feedback on the activity. This is useful when instructors provide rubrics as a marking scheme for teaching assistants (not appropriate for learners to view), but want learners to benefit from the feedback provided on those rubrics. Instructors can also use this approach to provide learners with feedback on specific criteria listed in a rubric without knowing all the details for that criteria, such as a lab simulation for chemistry.

Note: If you select the option to display hidden rubric feedback in general feedback, the content does not also appear on the Outcomes Progress page for the submitted learner evidence.

Contact

If you have any questions about the updates, please contact CourseLink Support at:

courselink@uoguelph.ca
519-824-4120 ext. 56939