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Users can choose to have some notifications sent to them by email, RSS, or SMS so they can be informed of course updates without being required to log in to myCourses.


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1. Use Caution

Configuration required to avoid significant message volume

If you choose to enable Notifications you must take time to configure them properly to ensure they meet your needs.

Misconfiguration can cause a large amount of messages to be sent out.

2. Notification settings

You can access your Notification settings through the Notifications link found in your user menu found by clicking on your name on the minibar at the top of most pages, or through the Notifications link found through the action menu on any News tool.

2.1. Set up an email contact method

  1. On the Notifications page, click the Enable email notifications link.
  2. Select your email. If you select Use custom email, enter your email address in the custom email field.
  3. Click Save on the form.
  4. Click Save at the bottom of the page.
  5. You will see your email next to "Send email notifications to:".

All notifications will be sent from the address. Please make sure to white-list this address in your email client to ensure your email notifications are not blocked as junk mail.

2.1.1. Removing an email contact method

You can go ahead and remove this email contact by clicking on the Delete email settings icon.

2.2. Set up a mobile contact method

Carrier charges may apply for text messages

Charges may apply for text messages depending upon your mobile carrier and your service contract with them. myCourses and the Rochester Institute of Technology are not responsible for any charges you may incur by choosing to enable notifications.

  1. On the Notifications page, click the Register your mobile link.
  2. On the Register Your Mobile form, select your Country, select your Mobile Carrier, and enter your full Mobile Number.
  3. Click Save.
  4. You will receive a registration confirmation code as a text message, enter it in the Confirmation Code field.
  5. Click Confirm.
  6. Customize Max number of messages per day if desired.
  7. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

Additional mobile carriers

If your mobile carrier is not listed and you know they offer an Email to SMS/Text Message gateway, please feel free to supply a link to that carriers gateway information to Academic Technology Support to get it added as an available option. The gateway must be a public method where an email can be sent to a user based on their phone number so they will receive it as a text message.

2.3. Customize Notifications

At the bottom of the form the Customize Notifications section offers a few additional options.

The first checkbox, Include my grade value in notifications from Grades, allows you the option of including your actual grades in messages. You may wish to disable this if this is a privacy concern for a shared mobile device.

The remaining options allow you to receive notifications for courses outside of the current academic term or courses that have been made inactive by the instructor. We recommend leaving these options unchecked. If a class is in a future term or it has been made inactive, students will not be able to access the course so notifications will not be useful in those cases.

2.4. Exclude Some Courses

Your notification settings allow you to exclude courses you do not wish to receive notifications for.

  1. Go to your Notifications settings.
    • You can access your Notification settings through the Notifications link found in your user menu found by clicking on your name on the minibar at the top of most pages, or through the Notifications link found through the action menu on any News tool.
  2. Under the Exclude Some Courses heading, click Manage my Course Exclusions.
  3. Either browse the list or use the search box to locate the course you wish to disable, and click the Exclude button next to the right of the course title to stop notifications for that course.
    • Repeat this for each course you wish to disable.
  4. Click the Close button at the bottom of the Manage Course Exclusions dialog.
  5. Click the Save button on the Notifications settings.

To enable a course that has been excluded, repeat the steps above but instead of the 'X' to exclude the course a Restore button will be shown to click on.

In this example the Search field was used to narrow down the list to courses with 'online' in the title. The Online Writing Lab (OWL) is currently excluded and the user will not receive notifications from this course.

2.4.1. New Courses

New course enrollments will be enabled by default. If you are added to a new committee or enrolled in courses for an upcoming semester you will receive notifications for those items unless you exclude them.

2.4.2. Search Tips Quickly find a term

When searching for courses, you can quickly find courses for a specific semester by searching on the term number with a leading period. For example, searching on .2121 will display all of your enrolled courses for Fall Quarter 2012 (2121). See all courses

If you have performed a search and wish to see all of your courses again click the 'x' next to what you have typed in to the search field.

2.4.3. Restoring all courses

Performed without confirmation

This option will be performed without a confirmation at this time. Please do not click on this link unless you are sure you wish to reset your excluded courses.

  1. Under Exclude Some Courses, click Manage my Course Exclusions.
  2. Click on Restore Excluded Courses.

3. Available Notifications

3.1. Daily Summary (Email only)

The daily summary email will include most activity on a course, generally reflecting the information found in the Updates shown on the course home page of courses by default.

This option will send you an individual email for each course you are enrolled in, past and present, unless you choose to Exclude Some Courses.

You must set up your email contact method to subscribe to a summary of activity.

  1. On the Notifications page, change the How often? drop-down list From Never to Daily.
  2. Select from the At what time? drop-down lists when you want to receive your daily digest.
  3. Click Save.
  4. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

3.2. Instant Discussion Notifications (Email Only)

Users can receive email notifications for discussion forums, threads, or messages that you want to follow. This option is enabled by default.

This option can generate significant message volume

In a busy course this may generate significant message volume. Please subscribe to Discussions wisely to make the most of this feature.

  1. Check the box in the Email column for Discussions - new message posted to a forum, topic or message for which I subscribed to instant notifications.
  2. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

Your Discussion Subscriptions are managed in the Discussion tool of each course. Please review the Discussions - User Documentation for instructions regarding these options.

3.3. Instant Dropbox Deadline Notifications (Email, SMS)

Users can subscribe to receive email or SMS notifications on dropbox folders with approaching end dates. If users have already submitted files to the folder, they still get notified of the approaching end date in case there are additional files they want to add, or they may want to make some final changes to their essay and submit an updated version before the end date.

  1. Check the box in the Email column and/or the SMS column for Dropbox - dropbox folder due date or end date is 2 days away.
  2. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

3.4. Instant Grade Notifications (Email, SMS)

Users have two options for notifications regarding Grades. 'Grade Item Released' will send a notification once when the grade is entered or released the first time. To receive notifications of changes to grades after the first release you want to enable notification for 'Grade Item Updated.'

These notifications are only for items in the Grades tool. If an instructor provided a score in feedback that was not linked to Grades no notification will be sent.

  1. Check the box in the Email column and/or the SMS column for Grades - grade item released and/or Grades - grade item updated.
  2. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

3.5. Instant News Notifications (Email, SMS, RSS)

Users have two options available for News notifications. They can be notified whenever a new news item is available and when an instructor makes a major update to an existing news item.

Email notifications include the headline and full body of the news item, plus a link to access the News tool for the course and any attachments.

  1. Check the box in the Email column and/or the SMS column for News - item updated and/or News - new item available.
  2. Click Save at the bottom of the page.

3.5.1. RSS

For users who prefer to aggregate all their news into Outlook, Feedly, etc., they can now subscribe to an RSS feed for News from a course.

  1. Visit the News widget of the News you wish to subscribe to.
  2. Next to the News heading click the action menu arrow.
  3. Select RSS from the menu.
    Depending on how your web browser or RSS Reader are configured, you will be presented options to subscribe to a feed or be given a link you can use to add that RSS feed to your chosen RSS viewer.

Support can only assist you with getting the RSS feed from myCourses for your use, we are not able to assist with the configuration and use of third-party options to take advantage of the RSS Feed.

3.6. Instant Quiz Notifications (Email, SMS)

Quiz notifications will be sent for available quizzes that have not been taken yet, as well as for quizzes that have been taken but which offer unlimited attempts or multiple attempts which have not all been used.

  1. Check the box in the Email column and/or the SMS column for Quizzes - quiz end date is 2 days away.
  2. Click Save at the bottom of the page.