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 June 2020

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Create and edit experience

The create and edit Dropbox page has an updated look and feel. The classic tabbed view has been transformed into a new, fully immersive page layout.

The updated look and feel of the new Dropbox creation screen
Figure: The updated look and feel of the new Dropbox creation screen

The primary panel on the left contains frequently used fields that are always displayed. These fields are most relevant to learners and are the core details instructors want to add; a due date, instructions, and attachments.

The panel on the right organizes additional, more advanced options such as start and end dates, rubrics, annotation tools, and Turnitin. When these options are collapsed, summary text provides details about which settings are active and subtle hints that aid in the discovery of additional settings. As a result, you can see everything at a glance with little to no scrolling, and without having to navigate through any tabs.

The new experience streamlines the process of linking folders to your gradebook and builds on a pattern first introduced in Activity Feed. When you enter a score, your assignment is added to Grades, and the name and score are automatically synced for you. If you traditionally create grade items in advance, support for selecting existing grades and categories is also available.

As an Instructor, if you are opting out of the new experience, a prompt appears encouraging you to leave feedback on the new experience.

Learning Outcomes – Detach copied Learning Outcomes from the originating course

The default behavior for copying outcomes is to remain linked to the course from which they were copied. If you want to edit the target course, the outcomes must be detached, either individually, or in bulk. To solve this issue, the copied objects must be unlinked in the target course to be editable. When custom created learning outcomes are detached from the source course, they become their own object. This is useful in a scenario when you want to create an update to a master course shell or to teach a new course based on another course with similar but not identical outcomes.

Note: This feature does not apply to Achievement Standards Network (ASN) or Program-imported outcomes.

A warning message appears when you start this action to confirm that you intend to detach locally authored outcomes from the source, and that there is no undoing this function.

When the detach function is performed, all the aligned outcomes in the course are collected. For each outcome that references back to the source, a new outcome is created to replace the linked original. All reference links to the original linked object are updated with the object ID of the new outcome object.

Use the Import/Export/Copy Components tool to copy one or more learning outcomes from a source to a target course. Then, in the target course, in the Outcomes tool, select one or more outcomes to detach from the source course.

Rubrics – Accessibility improvements in Rubric creation workflow

The following updates have been made to improve the accessibility of the rubric creation workflow:

  • The button next to the page title is now labeled so a screen reader reads “Actions for [title]” when the button has the focus.
  • The Overall Score now has the proper heading level so screen reader users can navigate directly to it from the heading list. Previously, users were required to tab through all previous headings in the list first.
  • There is no longer a skipped heading level between Rubric Levels and Criterion (both level 3) and Standards (previously level 5).
  • In the rubric preview window, Criterion Score has been added as a column header. Previously, the column did not have any header text.

Widgets – My Courses and Updates widgets display unevaluated assignment submissions

The My Courses Widget and the Updates widget now display new, unevaluated assignment submissions instead of unread assignment submission files to instructors. This change aligns the widgets with the Assignments page and the Quick Eval tool to consistently notify users of unevaluated submissions and help them to track their work.

The My Courses widget displays unevaluated Dropbox assignment submissions
Figure: The My Courses widget displays unevaluated Dropbox assignment submissions

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

Continuous Delivery Updates for April 2020

Students and Instructors

Classlist – Removal of the Classlist Navbar Link

To increase the level of student privacy in CourseLink, the Classlist navbar link will be removed from the default navigation bar.

Instructors can access the Classlist link by selecting Course Admin from the navbar. If there is a compelling reason to add the Classlist link, instructors can create a copy of the default navbar and add the Classlist link.

Brightspace Pulse – Pin and Unpin Courses

To help learners more easily find their current courses in Brightspace Pulse for iOS, 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 CourseLink.

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 Pin icon. Unpinning a course removes the pin icon.

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Dropbox Page Column Name

This feature updates the New column name on the Dropbox page to read as New Submissions.

The Dropbox page with the New Submissions column.
Figure: The Dropbox page with the New Submissions column

Pagination Default for Classlist and Grades

The pagination default in CourseLink for Classlist and Grades will be increased to [50, 100, 150, 200, 250] instead of the scale that started at [10, 20, …].

Learning Outcomes – Ability to Copy Outcomes

To provide a consistent copy experience, all learning outcomes that are in a course can now be copied to another course.

Now, you can outcomes from a source course to a target course. When selecting to copy outcomes with other course components, all other object references, such as alignment to rubric criteria or achievement scale mapping in the source course, and so on, are copied from the source to the target course as expected.

The changes also provide consistency in the editing experience. You can only edit outcomes at the location they originated. For example, if the outcome was authored in a program, it can only be edited in that program; it cannot be edited in the target course. To assist in knowing which learning outcomes can be edited from a user’s current location, there are icons to indicate if an outcome is locked (cannot be edited) or open (can be edited).

Copied outcomes will be copied as a reference (or link) back to the original source course. Any change made to the source outcome is automatically inherited in all target courses. If an outcome is copied to a target course, you cannot delete the outcome at the source without first deleting the outcome from all target courses.

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 March 2020

Instructors Only

Announcements – Display Author Information

To provide more information to users, Announcements now supports displaying author information (name and timestamp) on new and edited announcements.

A new Show Author Information check box displays in the New/Edit Announcement page, allowing instructors to choose if they want author information to display.

Users reading the announcement may see some or all of the following author information:

  • the original author
  • the original date and time of the announcement
  • the author who edited the announcement
  • the date and time of the edit
The new Show Author Information option on the New/Edit Announcement page
Figure: The new Show Author Information option on the New/Edit Announcement page

Groups – Set Exact Time Learners Can Self-Enroll

When setting up groups that allow learners to self-enroll, instructors can now add an exact time when enrollment opens, and an exact time when self-enrollment expires. Previously, instructors could only set the date when enrollment opened or expired.

Set exact time when enrollment opens and expires
Figure: Set exact time when enrollment opens and expires

Quick Eval – Support for Anonymous Marking

Dropbox assignments created with the Hide student names during assessment option selected now display in Quick Eval’s Submission view with learner names and profile images hidden. Instructors using anonymous marking can access Quick Eval with confidence that it supports their anonymous marking needs.

Learner names and profile images are hidden in Quick Eval Submissions view
Figure: Learner names and profile images are hidden in Quick Eval Submissions view

Rubrics – Confirmation Message for Partially Unevaluated Rubrics

To prevent publishing partially unevaluated rubrics, the publishing workflow in the new Rubrics grading experience now includes a confirmation message that warns users when the rubric is not fully evaluated. Instructors have the option to continue publishing, or cancel. Warning messages appear when publishing a rubric for an individual student and when bulk publishing rubrics. Users attempting to publish an incomplete rubric evaluation must now click Publish to complete the workflow.

The confirmation message asks users if they want to publish anyway, when attempting to publish an incomplete evaluation for an individual learner.
Figure: The confirmation message asks users if they want to publish anyway, when attempting to publish an incomplete evaluation for an individual learner.

Rubrics – Improved Accessibility in Rubric Grading

In Rubrics, when using keyboard navigation to tab to a row of selectable cells, there is now a focus indicator to help orient users on the page.

Rubrics – Manually Map Outcomes Achievement Levels to Rubric Levels

You can now manually map achievement levels to Rubric levels for all types of rubrics. Previously, achievement levels were automatically mapped to points-based or custom points-based rubrics. This feature enables you to override the percentage scale alignment with respect to an individual rubric if you choose to do so. This feature only appears when the scale has percentage values defined and is only enabled for points and custom point-based rubrics. For no score rubrics, the threshold marker placement is suggested and adjustable since there is no score calculation in the rubric.

New learning outcomes containing options to manually or automatically map achievement levels to rubric levels
Figure: New learning outcomes containing options to manually or automatically map achievement levels to rubric levels

Rubrics – Overall Score Levels Calculated After Rubric Criteria Completion

In the new Rubrics grading experience, the Overall Score level is now only calculated after all the criteria in the rubric have been assessed. This change optimizes rubric performance by eliminating the calculation of incomplete Overall Score levels until the rubric evaluation is completed, and improves the grading experience for instructors and rubric evaluators.

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 2020

Students and Instructors

Dropbox – Streamlined Access to Inline Feedback

To streamline access to assignment feedback, learners can now immediately access inline feedback from User Progress, Grades, and Dropbox. From these tools, the View Inline Feedback link takes the learner directly to the annotations view (or Turnitin viewer, if that is the tool used to provide feedback). The inline feedback also includes a link to the file for the assignment, so learners know which document contains the feedback. Previously, the View Inline Feedback link took the learner to the Dropbox feedback summary page, where they had to click a second link to view the feedback.

Grades view for learners displaying the View Inline Feedback link, which now opens directly in the annotation view.
Figure: Grades view for learners displaying the View Inline Feedback link, which now opens directly in the annotation view.

CourseLink – EXIF Data Warning Appears when Uploading Images

In some instances, when users upload .jpg files in any file upload area across CourseLink, an EXIF (exchangeable image file) data warning appears informing the user that the file may contain geolocation data.

Video Note – Automatic Closed Captioning

To improve accessibility, video notes now provide automatic closed captioning for newly created videos. After video processing, users can view closed captions using video player controls.

In addition, users can now download a transcript and the closed caption file associated with a video independent of Video Notes.

Localized closed captioning is available for the following languages:

  • US English (en-US)
  • British English (en-GB)
  • Canadian French (fr-CA)
  • German (de-DE)
  • Brazilian Portuguese (pt-BR)
  • Korean (ko-KR)
  • Italian (it-IT)
  • Spanish (es-US)
  • Modern Standard Arabic (ar-SA)
  • Russian (ru-RU)
  • Japanese (ja-JP)
  • Turkish (tr-TR)
  • Dutch (nl-NL)
  • Chinese Mandarin (zh-CN)

Notes:

  • Canadian English is not available for closed captioning and defaults to en-US.
  • Chinese Traditional (zh-TW) closed captions are not currently available and defaults to zh-CN.
  • Mexican Spanish (es-MX) closed captions may not be available and defaults to US Spanish (es-US)
  • Swedish closed captions are not available.
A Video Note with closed captions.
Figure: A Video Note with closed captions.

Instructors Only

Course Administration – Course Reset

Course Reset is a new tool that enables an instructor to reset a course back to an empty shell. Course Reset permanently deletes course content, activities, associated files, user grades, user progress records, and interaction data from the course in a single bulk process. Users can optionally choose to include course groups, and/or course widgets, navbars, and homepages as part of the course reset process, or leave them in the course.

The Course Reset process does not affect user enrollments, sections and section enrollment, course associations, course paths associated to the course, ePortfolio, ePortfolio sharing groups or forms, email/instant messages sent to or from users in the course, and Activity Feed posts.

Course Reset permanently deletes the course data and it will not appear in any reporting or data sets after the course reset process is complete. After performing a course reset, an Audit Log maintains a record of the course reset action, including the date and time of the course reset, the data that was selected for deletion, the user who performed the course reset, and any errors that occur during the course reset process.

Grades – Tab Delimited Import into Gradebook

Users can now import tab separated value (.tsv) files into Gradebook. Previously, users could only import comma delimited files into Gradebook, which created a usability issue in some international regions.

Outcomes Management – Levels of Achievement are Mapped to Rubric Levels

Levels of achievement, used to measure progress towards learning outcomes, can now be mapped to rubric levels. Instructors no longer have to use a percentage score to translate rubric levels to levels of achievement. This means they can use text-only rubrics, as well as points-based rubrics, to automatically identify a suggested level of achievement for the learner’s performance.

Achievement levels are automatically mapped to rubric levels. If there are more rubric levels than achievement levels, some achievement levels may span more than one rubric level. In this case, the levels on each side of the center are symmetrically and evenly distributed.

If there are more achievement levels than rubric levels, some achievement levels are excluded in the map. In this case, the top and bottom achievement levels are automatically mapped to the top and bottom rubric levels and distributed evenly and symmetrically.

After the automatic mapping has occurred, instructors can manually adjust the alignment. The alignment levels can be manually adjusted by dragging the colored circles in the Achievement Levels row of the rubric to identify the desired mapping. Changes can be made to the alignment until a submission is evaluated using the rubric. At that point, the rubric and mapped achievement levels are locked.

Rubrics dialog enabling instructors to adjust the outcomes mapped to rubric levels.
Figure: Rubrics dialog enabling instructors to adjust the outcomes mapped to rubric levels.

Quizzes – Learning Outcomes can be aligned to Quiz Questions

In the new Quiz Builder, questions can be aligned to learning outcomes. After you align an outcome to a quiz question, that outcome is aligned for all quizzes in which the question appears. This feature builds on the availability of learning outcomes with other tools, including content items, Dropbox, and rubrics.

After instructors align learning outcomes to one or more questions in a quiz, they can evaluate levels of achievement against learner quiz attempts. Suggested outcome achievements are provided for questions that are auto-graded with the ability to overwrite the suggestion. The default outcome achievement suggestion is based on the default outcomes achievement scale for the course. After the learning outcomes are published, quiz attempts appear in the outcomes progress page as individual demonstration of the learners’ achievement toward the outcomes. They are also visible to instructors when evaluating or reviewing attempts from within Quizzes and visible to learners within Quizzes if a submission view is set up to show quiz questions, responses, and associated outcomes to learners.

Instructors can align outcomes to all questions in a question pool by selecting the question pool from the main Quiz Builder page and then selecting Align to Outcomes from the More Actions menu. They can remove alignment to a particular question or set of questions within a question pool by opening the pool and selecting the clear option next to outcomes tag on each individual question.

Quick Eval – Course Level Filtering

When opening Quick Eval within a course, only the list of activities and submissions related to that course display. This helps instructors easily view and evaluate submissions on a course-by-course basis. If an instructor wants to view all submissions across all their courses, they can still use the More Options menu to see the Multi-Course Quick Eval, or open Quick Eval from outside of a course.

Quick Eval – Dismiss Activities until next Submission

Instructors can now remove items from their Quick Eval list until a new submission is received for the activity. The removed activity appears on the Dismissed Activities list and can be restored at any time. Once a new submission arrives to the Quick Eval list, the previously dismissed activity reappears there.

Previously, instructors could only select a specific date or forever when dismissing an activity. This new option provides instructors with an additional option to manage the submissions on their Quick Eval list.

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 2020

Students and Instructors

Brightspace Pulse – Additional Languages Supported

To provide consistent language support with the Brightspace platform, Brightspace Pulse is now available in the following additional languages:

  • Arabic (Saudi Arabia)
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Chinese (Traditional)
  • Danish
  • French (France)
  • German (Germany)
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Swedish
  • Turkish

Previously, Brightspace Pulse was only available in: English (U.S.), Spanish (Latin America), French (Canada), Portuguese (Brazil), and Dutch.

Classlist – Total Number of Users Field and Floating Buttons

To improve ease of use, the total number of users for their selection (whole class, section, group) now appears in a field at the bottom of the Classlist page for at-a-glance viewing to help instructors keep track of the total number of learners, which may extend beyond the users visible on the page. On the Print Classlist and Email Classlist pages, the clickable Print and Email buttons now float consistently on screen, to ensure easy access to these actions without excessive scrolling.

Groups – Self-enrollment Group Capacity, Start Dates and Descriptions

This feature includes three improvements to Groups:

  • Group members can now see the description of their group. For self-enrolled groups, group members will now see the group description at all times, including before and after enrollment. For other group types, instructors can now choose to display the description to members of the group. This visible group description setting is off by default for non-self-enrollment groups. Previously, all group descriptions were hidden from group members.
  • An instructor can now increase or decrease the capacity for self-enrollment groups after they have been created, and prior to the group sign-up expiry date. Decreasing a group size to an amount smaller than has already signed up for a group will not re-allocate users to other groups. Previously, self-enrollment groups were not editable after they were created.
  • Instructors can set Start dates for self-enrollment groups. This feature allows them to schedule self-enrollment groups availability, ensuring learners are prepared and have equal opportunity to self-enroll.

User Management – Character Limit for Long Text Fields in User Profile

To add a reasonable character limit to long text fields in the User Profile page, the following Personal Info fields are now 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

Instructor Only

Copy Course Components – Add Validation Logic to the Copy Process

Copy Course Components now contains a validation logic step to the course copy process, which can inform users if they performed a copy from the source previously, avoiding unnecessary duplication of copied course components.

Discussions – Assessment Consistency Changes

When assessing discussions, instructors have new multi-select options to Publish Feedback and Retract Feedback. In the Status column, the Draft / Published checkbox has been replaced by information on the date when feedback was saved as draft or published. These changes are visible on both the Users and Assessments tabs. The Save, Save and Close, and Cancel buttons have also been removed as their functionality has been replaced by the Publish Feedback and Retract Feedback options.

Previous view when assessing a discussion topic
Figure: Previous view when assessing a discussion topic
Updated view when assessing a discussion topic
Figure: Updated view when assessing a discussion topic

Grades – Export Sorting Options

This feature introduces the ability to sort exported gradebooks based on the following options: OrgDefinedID, Username, Last Name, and First name. The sort options available are based on the User Information Privacy permissions for the role.

Outcomes Management – Levels of Achievement are Mapped to Rubric Levels

Levels of achievement, used to measure progress towards learning outcomes, can now be mapped to rubric levels. Instructors no longer have to use a percentage score to translate rubric levels to levels of achievement. This means they can use text-only rubrics, as well as points-based rubrics, to automatically assess students against learning outcomes.

Achievement levels are automatically mapped to rubric levels. If there are more rubric levels than achievement levels, some achievement levels may span more than one rubric level. In this case, the levels on each side of the center are symmetrically and evenly distributed.

If there are more achievement levels than rubric levels, some achievement levels are excluded in the map. In this case, the top and bottom achievement levels are automatically mapped to the top and bottom rubric levels and distributed evenly and symmetrically. After the automatic mapping has occurred, instructors can manually adjust the alignment. The alignment levels can be manually adjusted by dragging the colored circles in the Achievement Levels row of the rubric to identify the desired mapping. Changes can be made to the alignment until a submission is evaluated using the rubric. At that point, rubrics and mapped outcome achievements are locked.

Rubrics dialog enabling instructors to adjust the outcomes mapped to rubric levels
Figure: Rubrics dialog enabling instructors to adjust the outcomes mapped to rubric levels

After rubrics and assessment outcomes are mapped, when an instructor enters a mark on the rubric, a suggested achievement level is automatically set based on achievement levels and rubric level mappings.

The suggested achievement levels are displayed for the instructor to review and adjust if necessary.

Rubric items aligned with outcomes provide information results in suggested achievement levels, which can be adjusted by instructors
Figure: Rubric items aligned with outcomes provide information results in suggested achievement levels, which can be adjusted by instructors

Quick Eval – Dismiss Activities from List

To improve the ability to manage items on their Quick Eval list, instructors can now select items that appear in their Quick Eval list and remove them temporarily or permanently. Instructors can view their dismissed items in the Dismissed Activities List and restore them to the Quick Eval list at any time.

Quizzes – Synchronization with Grades

Quiz scores and feedback entered in Grades now synchronize automatically with Quizzes. To further streamline the workflow, the Overall Feedback fields in Grades and Quizzes are now consolidated, and the Grade Item Public Comments field has been removed from Grades. All comments entered in the Overall Feedback field in Grades synchronizes automatically with the Overall Feedback field in Quizzes. This update creates a more direct workflow and aligns Quizzes with the consistent feedback experience implemented in Assignments and Discussions. Refer to the blog post Improving Consistency Of Synchronization Between Grades And Quizzes Tool (20.20.01 – January Release) for more information. Note: Synchronization only occurs for new grade entries. Existing grade data for quizzes will not be migrated due to the high impact to all past data and reports.

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 2019

Students and Instructors

Dropbox – File size information in submission receipt email

File size information now displays next to the file name in the submission receipt email sent to learners upon making a submission to a Dropbox submission folder.

Dropbox – Submission ID displays for Learners

A new column that displays Submission ID information is visible to learners on the View Feedback page in Dropbox. The ID can be useful when troubleshooting issues with Dropbox submissions.

Submission ID visible to learners when reviewing Submission Feedback information
Figure: Submission ID visible to learners when reviewing Submission Feedback information

Release Conditions – Learners are notified when a release condition triggers new content

In a course that uses release conditions to unlock additional content, learners previously were not informed when new content became available as a result of a release condition that was satisfied. Because there was no automatic notification or refresh of the table of contents, there was the potential for frustration when learners think they are done a module, and are later informed that there are steps left to be completed.

Now, when release conditions are satisfied, the learner is notified using a pop-up (“toast”) message that there are new items available in the course.

Instructors Only

Content – Sort HTML templates in alphanumeric filename order

To make it easier to find HTML templates when using Content, instructors can select the new Sort HTML Templates by name option from the Content Settings page in Content. Selecting this new option sorts templates in alphanumeric order based on filename. Previously, HTML templates were sorted alphanumerically based on directory structure.

The new Sort HTML Templates by name option in the Content Settings page
Figure: The new Sort HTML Templates by name option in the Content Settings page

Quick Eval – Display unevaluated submissions past course end date

Previously, unevaluated learner submissions were removed from Quick Eval when a course’s end date was reached. A new option has been set to display unevaluated learner submissions for 7 days beyond a course’s end date. This allows instructors to continue to use Quick Eval for courses past their end date for that specified amount of time.

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 2019

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Instructors Only

Dropbox – Improvements to Dropbox

The Dropbox page shows a count of new submissions and resubmissions in the New column, which you can opt-in /opt-out of displaying.

Dropbox page with the New column
Figure: Dropbox page with the New column

Intelligent Agents – Email images

This feature includes the following change to Intelligent Agents (IA):

  • Users can now insert images directly into the body of intelligent agent emails using the Add Image button in the HTML editor. The images are attached to the email and shown in place when viewed in the recipient’s external mail client.

Learning Outcomes | New

CourseLink has released a new tool called Learning Outcomes. The new outcomes tool can be used to track and assess learning outcomes at a program and/or course level.

You can find the tool under the Course Admin options.

The Learning Outcomes tool under Course Admin
Figure: The Learning Outcomes tool under Course Admin

Once outcomes have been added to a course, they can be linked to Rubric criteria, Dropbox folders, and Discussions.

Note: Linking to Grade items and Quiz questions will be coming in a future release.

Any new programs or achievement scales can be set up by contacting CourseLink Support.

The official release video, below, can be viewed on D2L’s YouTube channel.

For more information about Learning Outcomes (also known as Standards), please see the Brightspace documentation website.

Competencies Tool – Language restored

With the release of the new Learning Outcomes tool, all language related to outcomes will be removed from the Competencies tool.

Updated terminology:

  • LOA Framework will be restored to Competency
  • Learning Outcome will be restored to Objective

Learning Outcomes – View assessment details on the Outcomes Progress Details page

To increase the value of the Outcomes Progress Details page, instructors and other instructor-type roles can now view feedback and submissions for dropbox and discussion topics for individual learners.

The page links to a summary of the activity, the learner’s submission or demonstration of the activity, the assessment that an instructor has provided. The feedback page displays the following information:

  • Activity description
  • Learner submission
  • Rubric assessment
  • Score achieved by the learner
  • Start, due, and end dates
  • Outcomes and levels achieved
  • General feedback provided by the instructor or evaluator

Quick Eval – Improve consistency across supported tools

To improve consistency across tools in Quick Eval, the following updates are being released:

  • When feedback on a quiz submission is saved as draft, a draft icon displays next to the quiz submissions in Quick Eval.
  • In Activities view, the Publish All option is available for Quizzes.

Quizzes – Restore quiz attempts in the Quiz Attempt log | Update

When an instructor restores a learner’s deleted quiz attempt, note the following workflow changes:

  • A deleted quiz attempt can only be restored if the learner does not have another quiz attempt in progress.
  • The Restore button only appears for the latest deleted quiz attempt.

Quizzes – Save feedback as draft

Instructors can now clearly see when feedback is saved as a draft, or published, while evaluating quiz submissions. On the quiz evaluation page, the Graded (G) checkbox and Save button have been replaced by the Publish and Save Draft buttons.

The Publish and Save Draft buttons allow instructors to quickly save drafts of feedback left on quiz submissions
Figure: The Publish and Save Draft buttons allow instructors to quickly save drafts of feedback left on quiz submissions

Quizzes – Set quiz options in Quiz Builder

The new Quiz Builder experience now allows instructors to set additional quiz options when creating quizzes. A More Actions button is visible when users select the checkbox for one or more questions; allowing instructors to set questions as mandatory or bonus directly from Quiz Builder, and change the number points assigned to a question or set of questions. There is no change in how the bonus, mandatory, or points features work.

Video Note – Removal of Flash

The Video Note tool has removed all Flash-based recording options.

Video Note – Record Video workflow update

Instructors are now able to attach pre-existing Video Notes in the Record Video workflow.

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 2019

Students and Instructors

Accessibility – Compliance with WCAG 2.1 level AA | Updated

As part of D2L’s ongoing commitment to design and develop against WC3 accessibility best practices, CourseLink now aligns to the updated WCAG 2.1 level AA standards in both compliance reporting and all new development work. It is D2L’s intention to be an industry leader in inclusive design, and these changes improve support for individuals with alternative fine motor, cognition, and low vision needs. There are no major changes to workflows with these improvements; however, we have updated our shared components, such as fonts, buttons, menus, and input fields to better support WCAG 2.1 level AA requirements and recommendations. These changes include:

  • Adding input type and auto-complete to appropriate fields to facilitate a user’s ability to complete forms.
  • Adding escape key commands where appropriate to components that appear on hover or focus.
  • Updating components that activate on down event to ensure that a user can cancel actions.
  • Improving color contrast on additional components in CourseLink.

Supported browsers | Updated

As previously announced in the August release, Microsoft Internet Explorer is approaching End of Life (EOL) status as a supported browser. Starting January 2020, CourseLink will no longer support Internet Explorer. To provide more visibility about this upcoming change, when an existing user logs in to CourseLink using Internet Explorer, a banner now informs the user about the approaching EOL date. The banner also includes a recommendation to upgrade their browser and a link to the EOL communication on the Brightspace Community. After logging in, the user can dismiss the banner for that session. For each subsequent session, the banner displays; however, the user can dismiss it.

The Internet Explorer End of Life banner in CourseLink.
Figure: The Internet Explorer End of Life banner in CourseLink.

Brightspace Pulse – iOS support | Updated

The latest version of Brightspace Pulse is supported on Apple devices with iOS 11 or higher. Older versions of Brightspace Pulse will continue to work on Apple devices with iOS 10, but will not receive any app updates. For an optimal experience, D2L recommends installing the latest version of Brightspace Pulse on Apple devices with iOS 11 or higher.

Instructors Only

Dropbox, Quizzes, Discussions – Change to immersive navigation bar

When evaluating a assignment submission, quiz, or discussion, the user interface has been updated slightly. The Next Student and Previous Student buttons above the submission and learner information have been replaced by forward and back chevrons that display in the immersive navigation bar. Previously, these buttons were displayed across the entire width of the page. The information on which user you are evaluating (e.g. 1 of 12) displays between the back and forward chevrons.

Evaluating an assignment with the new immersive navigation bar.
Figure: Evaluating an assignment with the new immersive navigation bar.

CourseLink – Improvements to consistency

To provide a more consistent experience, there have been changes to update the language, interface controls, and workflows throughout CourseLink.

The language and methods by which instructors make activities hidden or visible to learners across different tools is now consistent.

  • The visibility control now uses a checkbox with the consistent terminology Hide from users in all instances. This change affects the Dropbox, Discussions, Quizzes, Surveys, and Grades (grade item and grade category) tools.
  • In Discussions, the VisibilityAvailability Dates, and Locking options move from the Properties tab to the Restrictions tab.
  • The Hide from users checkbox appears under the title field of all activity creation pages in the Content tool.
  • There is now only one Special Access icon in Quizzes (previously there were two, one for each type of Special Access). The Special Access icon also now appears in Dropbox where it previously did not.
  • In the Grade book, on the context menu for a grade item, the Grade All option is now Enter Grades.
  • In the Grade Item and Grade Category event log, the End Date Restriction and Start Date Restriction properties are now Availability End Date and Availability Start Date.

Intelligent Agents – Email Attachments

You can now add attachments to automated email messages when creating and editing intelligent agents. The intelligent agent email template contains an Attachments area that enables you to upload local files, select from available course files, or record audio.

Links – Improved link validation

The Links tool has been updated to improve the link validation process. Pre-existing links are not impacted; however, any new links or updates to pre-existing links must be formatted to follow the new validation rules. (Valid formats include: URLs that begin with http/https, ftp/sftp/ftps, file, mailto, feed, itpc, mms, rtsp, or relative paths beginning with /).

Quick Eval – Accessibility improvements to Activities view

To increase the accessibility of the Activities view in Quick Eval, the feature is now compatible with screen reader technology.

Quizzes – Enter as User permission

Instructors can now use the Enter In-Progress Quiz as User permission. With this change, users marking quizzes can impersonate students to submit the quiz on behalf of the student. Administrators can be sure that there are no privacy infringement issues, and instructors will not accidentally infringe on a learner’s privacy.

Contact

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

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