In preparation for Spring Semester 2015, CourseDen (Brightspace by D2L) will be upgraded to version 10.3. The upgrade will make CourseDen unavailable beginning at 12:01 AM on 12/19, with an expected return to service by 5 PM on 12/26.
Because this is an in-place upgrade, instructor access could be restored slightly earlier or could be delayed due to unforeseen circumstances. Any delays or changes in service will be communicated via the all-faculty email listserv.
Students will be able to log in and access a student orientation course by noon on 01/02. However, they will not be able to access their Spring 2015 classes until the official Spring Semester start date. This upgrade may involve some minor changes to the look and feel of CourseDen, however it will not include significant changes to tool functionality. Rather, it features improvements and fixes to CourseDen's usability and added functionality that will enhance instructor and student experiences.
See below for improvements:
TOLL FREE FOR HEARING IMPAIRED 1-800-892-4315 - Appropriate adaptive technology (hardware) necessary to use this number
Now students submitting to a Dropbox folder from content can access the Dropbox folder's evaluation rubrics before submission and also access completed rubrics after their evaluations are published.
It is now possible to evaluate a student from Dropbox, even if no submission was made to the Dropbox folder. This supports the cases in which an instructor wants to assign feedback even when the submission occurs outside of the Dropbox.
Instructors can now notify students of changed content when they update or change a file from Content. They can also include a custom message with the notification and choose to reset completion tracking for students who have already completed the activity. Students who completed topics will see the word “Updated” beside the completion indicator to indicate they were reset.
The Table of Contents now remembers the expanded or collapsed state of modules across sessions, and includes options to Expand All or Collapse All modules with a single click. This allows students and instructors to switch between an easy-to-scan list of modules, and one displaying full details. They can also collapse completed modules as they progress through a course.
Noteworthy Improvement: Return to Content workflow while editing a quiz, survey, or self-assessment activity
When instructors edit a quiz, survey or self-assessment in Content, they are now returned to the activity within Content when they click Save and Close or Cancel. Previously, the instructor was taken out of Content, onto the main page of Quizzes, Surveys, or Self Assessments.
If an instructor includes a file that cannot be displayed in-place, there is now a placeholder page that includes a Download option for the file.
As an ever-increasing number of discussions are created, there is a need to provide high-level information in a more compact, less cluttered manner. CourseDen 10.3 introduces a new Discussions List which further enforces the notion of "focus on the conversation, not the overhead".
The new Discussions list presents information about topics in a compact and easy-to-scan format. Quickly scan down the columns to see which topics have unread or unapproved posts, and dive into the conversation with a single click.
Discussion statistics will now call out the number of threads created and replies posted separately.
All existing courses will be upgraded.
Your username and password should not have changed - it should be the same login information you used before the upgrade (your UWG ID username and password).
When you log back into your courses after 12/26, things may look just a little different. There may be changes to the layout of your course homepage and there will be the addition of new functionality
Extensive tests by USG schools have shown that few issues should arise as a result of the upgrade. As soon as you regain access, it will be important to check your courses thoroughly and report any issues so that we can resolve them before spring classes begin.
UWG|Online is in the process of rewriting job aides, tutorials, help videos, workshop materials, orientation information, etc.
In the meantime, Google the term, "Desire2Learn 10.3" to find a wealth of materials provided by other schools that have already adopted the new system. Here are a couple of examples:
The University of Wisconsin-Madison
The University of Central Oklahoma