Continuous Delivery Updates for July 2021

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Add categories in the New Dropbox Creation Experience

The new Dropbox creation experience supports the alignment of assignments to categories. Instructors can add new or existing categories when creating or editing a new Dropbox folder.

The new Dropbox creation experience with the ability to align assignments to categories
Figure: The new Dropbox creation experience with the ability to align assignments to categories

Dropbox – Org Defined Id field in the User Profile card

When an instructor hovers over a learner’s profile in the new Dropbox Evaluation Experience, the User Profile card now displays the value of the Org Defined Id (student number) field, if enabled in the Profile Cards tool. By default, the new Org Defined Id field in the Profile Cards tool is enabled.

The new Org Defined Id field in the Profile Cards tool
Figure: The new Org Defined Id field in the Profile Cards tool

CourseLink Platform – New External Resource icon

To differentiate from the similar generic download icon, the external resource icon is now changing to a building block icon. This new icon better represents the building block approach of external resource functionality.  

The new icon now appears in External Learning Tools under the Add Existing options of the Content tool.

The new external resource functionality icon
Figure: The new external resource functionality icon

Grades – Add categories for text, calculated, and formula grade items

This feature enables you to better organize your grade book by adding categories to text, calculated, and formula grade items. This improved organization does not impact the calculation of the category these grade items are in. The totals in these categories do not contribute to the final grade.

You can import, export, and copy category values for these grade item types.

Quizzes – Quiz Introduction field removed

To reduce redundancy in the Quizzes tool, the Introduction field is being phased out. In this release, when an instructor creates and/or edits a quiz, the Introduction field is no longer available.

If any quiz previously had text in the Introduction field, on clicking Edit, the text is automatically appended to the Description field. A message appears indicating that these two fields have been merged. Instructors can review the modified quiz description prior to saving the quiz.

Note: In some interfaces, for example Content, the Instructions field is displayed. This Instructions field already maps to the quiz Description field. Hence, there is no change to this workflow.

The Edit Quiz page with the message that appears when you edit a quiz containing an introduction
Figure: The Edit Quiz page with the message that appears when you edit a quiz containing an introduction

When importing a course using Import/Export/Copy Components, text in the quiz Introduction field automatically appends to the quiz Description field. The export and copy workflows remain unchanged.

Quizzes – Relocation of the Reports Setup functionality

The Report Setup tab on the Edit Quiz page is now available on the context menu of a quiz and reads as Setup Reports.

The Reports option available on the quiz context menu is also updated and reads as View Reports.

The updated quiz context menu with the Setup Reports and View Reports options
Figure: The updated quiz context menu with the Setup Reports and View Reports options

Quizzes – Set grace period time to 0 minutes

When setting an enforced time limit for a quiz, instructors can now set the grace period for a quiz to 0 minutes, in place of the default grace period setting of 5 minutes. Entering a 0 minute grace period flags the quiz attempt as exceeded immediately when the quiz time limit is reached by the learner. Quiz attempt logs display when the learner attempt exceeds the regular time limit, grace period time limit or any extended time limit. Grace period of 0 minutes can be set for quizzes with special access restrictions as well.  

Note that setting a grace period can support learner accessibility requirements and other situations, such as slow internet connections when completing quizzes.

Quizzes – Status and workflow changes for quizzes with ungraded questions

To support instructors who need to manually score questions within quizzes, the following quiz status and quiz grading workflow updates are available:

  • For quizzes that contain questions that need to be manually scored (such as Written Response questions) AND that have the “Allow attempt to be set as graded immediately upon completion” option disabled, a new Pending Evaluation status appears beside the quiz attempt on the Grade Quiz page.
  • While evaluating a quiz attempt with unevaluated questions, the instructor can now select Pending evaluations in the Question View drop-down menu to filter for only the questions that require manual evaluation. 
  • Instructors can now filter the Users tab by status. The available filters are: Published, Saved as draft, Pending evaluation and an empty status. The empty status denotes a quiz with auto-scored questions, where all questions are evaluated and there is no question evaluation pending. 
The updated quiz status filters appear on the Attempts tab
Figure: The updated quiz status filters appear on the Attempts tab

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 July 2019

Students and Instructors

Accessibility – Compliance with WCAG 2.1

As part of D2L’s ongoing commitment to design and develop against WC3 accessibility best practices, there are updates to our shared web components, such as fonts, buttons, menus, and input fields, to ensure they align with WCAG 2.1 standards. These changes include:

  • Text color change from #56A5C to #494C4E for our standard font styles, which is WCAG Level AAA compliant.
  • Resetting clients to “Normal” for their Org default size to ensure that default configurations have appropriate legibility. In addition, the configuration option for setting a font override at the Org level has been removed. Users can still change their personal font preferences using Account Settings and existing individual user overrides are retained.
  • Changes to the color, borders, hover and focus styles of other web components such as buttons, menus and input fields to ensure they comply with WCAG 2.1 color contrast requirements for non-text components.

These changes will improve readability and provide better ability to meet contrast compliance with non-text elements. 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. These compliance changes contain no changes to workflows; all changes are look and feel only.

Widgets – Updates to language terms for Updates Widget and My Courses Widget

There are changes to lang term values to increase the clarity of the fields in the Updates Widget, the My Courses Widget, and Dropbox (displayed in Grades) to more clearly describe the capability of the feature.

In the Updates widget:

  • Show the number of new assignment submissions is now Show the number of unread submission files
  • New Assignment Submissions for {subject} is now New Assignment Submission Files for {subject}

In the My Courses Widget:

  • Unread Assignment Submission is now Unread Assignment Submission File 
  • New Assignment Submissions is now New Assignment Submission Files 
  • {number} Unread Assignment Submission is now {number} Unread Assignment Submission Files.

In Dropbox (displayed in Grades):

  • New submission – View {subject}’s submissions in a new window is now Unread submission file – View {subject}’s submissions in a new window

Navbar – Display user initials when there is no user profile image

If a user does not upload a user profile image in CourseLink, the navbar now displays the user’s initials in the user-profile badge. This change occurs for all roles and displays in the CourseLink navbar. Previously, if a profile image was not uploaded, a blank user image displayed.

User initials now display in the navbar
Figure: User initials now display in the navbar

Surveys – Improvements to the learner experience

To improve the learner experience when taking a survey, the following updates are now available:

  • The primary button when completing a Survey has been updated from Save Responses to read as Submit Survey. Learners will continue to be prompted to confirm their submission when they submit the survey
  • Learners can still save survey answers manually. The Save button now reads as Save Responses
  • A new Back to Questions button is displayed when attempting to submit a survey with unanswered questions
  • While learners are taking an anonymous survey, an alert appears at the top of the survey indicating that the survey is anonymous and their user information will not be tied to their responses

Instructors Only

Dropbox – Edit category improvements

An Edit Categories option is now available in Dropbox to allow users to edit all categories from one page. You can add, modify, delete, and sort categories, as well as manage unused categories. If a category with folders is deleted, those folders are added to the No Category area.

Select Edit Categories from the Dropbox page
Figure: Select Edit Categories from the Dropbox page
Manage all categories from one page
Figure: Manage all categories from one page

Dropbox – Eraser added to Annotations

An eraser has been added to the Annotations tool bar to allow evaluators to remove ink annotations made when evaluating Dropbox submissions.

Quick Eval – Improvements to Quick Eval

To improve the Quick Eval experience, the following updates are now available:

  • The Back to Quick Eval button directs users to the Quick Eval tool at the course level or My Home level, depending on where you launched it from
  • Different date formats are supported in the Submission Date column

Brightspace Insights – Assessment Quality Dashboard available in Insights Portal | New

There is a new embedded Assessment Quality Dashboard available in the Insights Portal. The goal of the Assessment Quality dashboard is to understand the quality of assessments using quiz and question statistics such as reliability, average grade, and correlation for all quiz and question types (except question pools). This dashboard includes a visualization that displays data for:

  • Question details
  • Question statistics data points
  • Quiz details
  • Quiz reliability data points 
  • Quiz summary statistics data points
Assessment Quality card in CourseLink
Figure: Assessment Quality card in CourseLink

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 2018

Students and Instructors

Dropbox – New Text Submission Type

Instructors can now create Text Submission Dropbox type in CourseLink. The new Text Submission type allows learners to create text documents for submission directly in Dropbox using a rich text editor, eliminating the need to attach a file.

My Courses widget – Course Groupings

Courses that appear in the My Courses widget can now be grouped by Department, Semester Name or Role when the Update Sort Logic view is enabled. Once a course grouping option is selected, the courses are separated into tabs within the widget for easy viewing and selection.

Instructors Only

Quizzes – Removal of Image and Text Information Items

As images and text can be included in any type of question using the features of the HTML editor, there is no longer a need for image and text information items. Image and text information items in existing quizzes or question libraries convert into sections, and are still displayed to learners attempting the quiz. One section is created for each existing image or text information item. Once the conversion of existing image and text information items is complete, the ability to create new image and text information items is no longer available.

During the question conversion process the following actions occur:

  • Each image and text information item is converted to an individual section
  • If the information item included a title, that is used for the section title
  • If the information item did not include a title, one is automatically generated using the format: Untitled [converted from a Text Information Item], or Untitled [converted from an Image Information Item]
  • The setting to show the Section title to learners is set to off
  • The setting to show Section text to students is set to on
  • For text information items, the Question Text field is set as the Section Text field
  • For image information items, the Section Text consist of an image tag, followed by the Caption text. If there was a Description for the image, it is included as the alt text of the image.

Turnitin – Improvements to the Turnitin Integration

The following improvements have been made to the Turnitin (TII) integration:

  • Updates have been made to automate date management in TII. Start and End dates are no longer managed separately or prohibitive when learners make a submission in CourseLink and the TII dates are not set correctly. Previously, dates were managed in both CourseLink and TII, which often led to dates being misaligned. As a result, it caused issues with learners getting access to their feedback or being able to successfully submit their assignments. This improvement will reduce the number of errors seen because there will no longer be issues with the TII assignment submission folder having different date restrictions than what is in the Assignments tool.
  • Learners have access to formative feedback left in GradeMark (even if there is no score, which can be found in the assignment submission folder, in User Progress, or in Grades).
  • Feedback on Group Assignments is now provided to all learners in the group. Previously, feedback was only provided to the individual learner that made the submission.
  • Submissions made to a TII enabled assignment submission folder are pre-validated at time of submission to ensure they are within the file type and size requirements enforced by TII. Previously, upon submission in CourseLink, learners immediately received their receipt of submission and the pre-validation was done after the fact. As a result, the submission might have not been accepted by TII at all, forcing instructors to analyze and, in some cases, request another submission. This improvement will reduce the number of submissions that were previously rejected by TII. It is also now obvious that the learner is making a submission to TII.
  • The version of HTTPS communications has been updated from TLS 1.0 to TLS 1.2.
  • Previously, when instructors used GradeMark to score or provide feedback, they had to sync each submission one by one to copy the score to CourseLink. The new GrademarkAutoTransferDefault configuration variable (which is set to on) allows scores to be copied automatically to CourseLink as a draft. The Auto copy as draft option can also be set within the Edit Assignment Folder page for each individual assignment folder.

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

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