Blog

myCourses Version 10 Upgrade

We are pleased to announce that myCourses -- RIT’s course management system -- will be upgraded to version 10 and made available to all users on August 22.

The upgrade of myCourses to version 10 features updates and additions to navigation and presentation of course materials.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the upgrade, or any other aspect of myCourses, please contact Academic Technology Support, visiting http://www.rit.edu/tls/contact for our hours of operation, contact information, and direct chat.

Index

Tiny Link

User Interface Changes

In this release the vendor has made significant user interface changes for a more engaging and intuitive experience for all users. The most significant UI changes are outlined here.

Top Minibar

The top minibar is in a fixed position and contains the following items:

  • My Home, linking to the central My Home page.
  • Course drop-down menu, which allows users to search for a course, order by last accessed courses, and order by course name. Pinned courses are listed above all others in the list.
  • Message Alerts icon, which notifies users of new Pager messages and allows user to compose new emails through the Access email link.
  • Update Alerts icon, which notifies users of any notifications they have subscribed to.
  • Discussion Alerts icon
  • Profile drop-down menu, which includes the Edit Profile, Notifications, Account Settings and Logout links.

My Home

You can click the My Home link in the top minibar to take you to your homepage.

Course Home

You can click the course title to navigate to your course's home. For longer course titles, your course name may be truncated in the top minibar, but the full name will display on the course homepage.

Your course home will also list your course's full title, indicated with a red arrow in the following picture:

Navigation bars

The white navigation bar is listed below the new minibar at the top.

The navigation bar, indicated with a red arrow, lies below the orange top minibar:

Central column layout

For most pages, the layout centers all content in a central column area. This area encompasses the white rectangular area between the beige-grey gradient background. Pages that do not use the central column include:

  • The Enter Grades page
  • The Question Library
  • The Add/Edit Questions page for individual quizzes
  • The Add/Edit Questions page for individual surveys
  • The default view option for viewing an individual Content topic from the View Topic page (e.g. an HTML file created with the Create New File option)

    Instructors may customize the view option for their individual courses through Content > Settings > Content Viewer > Show Sidebar.

  • Viewing individual Discussion topics, forums, or messages
  • The Course Builder

The above exceptions suppress the course navigation bar, and thus require you to click a confirmation button (such as Exit or Done) so that the navigation bar is visible once more. In the case of the Enter Grades page, instructors must navigate to another Grades area, such as Manage Grades; there is no confirmation button.

Review courses with edited navigation bars

Existing navigation bars will continue to render correctly upon upgrade, but will be displayed within the 960 pixel grid, and thus may wrap depending on the number of links you have included.

If you have customized your navigation bars in the past and are not using the course default, you may need to update your navigation bars to display as expected in the new layout. Please review all of your courses prior to the start of classes to ensure your navigation is set up properly.

Alerts

Alerts are now displayed in three categories and included on the new Minibar. When you receive an alert, the corresponding icon is highlighted with a red dot.

Example

This user has no Message alerts, Update alerts, or Discussion alerts:

While this user has Message alerts and Update alerts:

We are working with the vendor to address the coloring of new alert indicator to provide greater visibility.

Select a course Drop-Down Menu

You no longer have to go back to the My Home page to navigate to another course. Instead, you can use the course drop-down menu from the top minibar, which allows you to search for a course, order by last accessed courses, and order by course name. Pinned courses are listed above all others in the list. This drop-down menu is always visible.

See more info about the Select a course drop-down menu below.

News

Instead of buttons, version 10 uses a drop-down menu for links to News Tools, New items, Reordering items, and RSS subscriptions. The button to the notifications page has been removed.

Reorganized In-tool Navigation

Left-side Tool Areas panels have been moved to the top of tool pages. If the page is deemed an action (e.g. New Module or Reports), it will not appear at the top of tool pages. Only significant subpages have been included to avoid redundancy.

For instance, in Manage Content, the View Content and Manage Files links have been moved to the top of the page:

Grouped Actions

Top tool actions are emphasized and sometimes grouped for easy access, and secondary actions are grouped in drop-down menus to reduce clutter.

For instance, there is now an Add Content button on the Manage Content page:

Labeled Icons

Many icons throughout version 10 are now labeled instead of being stand-alone icons. For instance:

  • Classlist: Icons such as Email, Page, Print, Enrollment, and Unenroll (some of these icons are not available to all roles)
  • Groups: Email and Delete Selected Groups icons

Placement of Save/Cancel Buttons

The placement of Save/Cancel buttons are at the bottom left of tool pages to address issues with the previous full-screen widths where users may have had to scroll to find save buttons if they were zooming with their browser.

General New Functions

Select a Course Drop-Down Menu

The Select a Course drop-down menu allows you to search for a course, order by last accessed courses, and order by course name. Pinned courses are listed above all others in the list.

Important Notes

  • Ordering by course name uses all characters, even leading spaces (for example, ignoring quotes, " XYZ" would be listed before "ABC").
  • After pinning a course, you must refresh the page or navigate to a different page in order for the course to appear at the top of the list.
  • When you are on the myCourses homepage, Select a course... is the title of the drop-down menu. When you are in a specific course, the title of the course itself is the title of the drop-down menu.

Using the Select a course drop-down menu within a course called myCourses Demo:


 

Additional Notifications for Update Alerts

Students can now choose to receive email or text message (SMS) notifications for when a grade item is released or updated. Optionally, the grade value can be included in these messages. Other email or SMS notifications include Discussion notifications, notification when a Dropbox due date is two days away, when a News item is updated, when a new News item is available, and when a quiz end date is two days away.

Notifications available in version 10:

  • Discussions - new message posted to a forum, topic or message for which user subscribed to instant notifications.
  • Dropbox - dropbox folder end date is 2 days away.
  • Grades - grade item released.
  • Grades - grade item updated.
  • News - item updated.
  • News - new item available.
  • Quizzes - quiz end date is 2 days away.

In addition to email or text notifications, the Update alerts icon will also be highlighted once a user logs into myCourses.

Sent Mail folder

Emails that users send through myCourses are stored for review in a Sent Mail folder, which is accessible by clicking the Message Alerts icon, then Access Email, then the Sent Mail button.

Attendance

Copying Attendance Schemes and Registers

Instructors can now copy Attendance Schemes and Registers between courses.

Note

You will need to add the Attendance tool to your course's navigation bar in order to use it. Here is how to do so:

  1. Go to Edit Course and click on Navigation & Themes
  2. To the right of your active Navbar, click the small arrow, then choose "Copy"
  3. Now make this copy the active NavBar by choosing its name under the "Active NavBar" drop-down menu, and then clicking the Apply button
  4. Now, click on the name of your active copied navbar to edit it
  5. Click the "Links" tab
  6. Click the "Add Links" button where you would like for your Attendance link to appear (most instructors put theirs in the bottom left link area, underneath the Left Logo)
  7. Check the box next to "Attendance" and click the Add button
  8. Click the "Save and Close" button

Calendar

The Events widget is now called the Calendar tool. It is more or less the same as the Events widget, but it displays a calendar and has upcoming events listed beneath it.

Collapsing/Expanding items in Calendar widget

You can collapse or expand the calendar or upcoming events by clicking the arrow to the right of the date.

Organization of calendars

Instead of having a checkbox-based list on the left-hand side listing a user's calendars, the calendars are grouped in a dropdown menu. Click the arrow to the right of All Calendars (#) to select calendars to view.

Importing events

You can now import events from an iCal format file to a calendar.

Hidden events

Hidden events are recognizable in the Day/Week/Month views with a 2-pixel dotted border and descriptive alternative text.

Remembered Filters

Filters are remembered as users view items from the List view and return to the filtered list.

Page Break Option For Printing

A new print option has been introduced that allows users to control whether or not page breaks are added after every event when printing. The events displayed as a result of searching and filtering from the List view can be printed.

Task Headings

Task headings now indicate the number of incomplete tasks.

Deleting Repeating Events

When deleting a repeating event, options are available to delete the series, the current occurrence, or the current occurrence and future occurrences.

Content

Viewing Options for "View Content"

Instructors and admins have four options for how to display the content of their course, chosen from the Content Viewer section of the Settings area in Manage Content:

  • Full screen with sidebar with the content map sidebar on the left and without the course navigation bar (as is typical for full screen pages)
  • Full screen with no sidebar without the content map sidebar and without the course navigation bar
  • Fixed 960px width with sidebar with the content map sidebar and with the course navigation bar
  • Fixed 960px width and no sidebar without the content map sidebar and with the course navigation bar

The Fixed 960px width with sidebar option is the closest to the default setting in the previous myCourses version.

Discussions

The "Must Post First" option

A new option in Discussions now enables you to enforce participants to post their opinion first before reading others’ posts. This encourages original
thought without influence from other existing messages.

From the student's end, they will be notified of unread messages but will not see them upon opening the Discussion topic. They will see the message "You must compose a message before you can view or reply to other messages in this topic" where the messages would ordinarily display.

To enable this feature use the new checkbox under Options entitled 'A user must compose a message before participating in the topic.' Just check that option to enable it and save the Topic.

Dropbox

In previous releases, as soon as feedback was entered and saved for a student’s dropbox submission, that feedback was immediately available to students. Unlike other assessment tools such as Quizzes and Discussions, Dropbox feedback could not be withheld. Now instructors can withhold feedback so they can review and revise grades, rubrics, comments, and attachments. Publishing feedback allows students to see feedback from their submission history in the dropbox and updates any associated grade items. Instructors can publish feedback to all students simultaneously after they have finished assessing submissions or on a student by student basis.

When leaving feedback, there are options to Publish or Save Draft:

The easiest way to tell if a draft is saved and not published is from the Folder Submissions page. Drafts will show the prompt "Feedback Left," while published feedback will show the prompt "Grade and Feedback Published":

Prior versions showed the prompt "Leave Feedback" when the feedback was released to students, which could be confusing for users.

Instructors can also publish feedback in bulk from the Folder Submissions page by selecting users and clicking the Publish Feedback icon ( ).

Grading Through GradeMark

A Dropbox folder's "Out Of" score is used when creating assignments in TurnItIn for online markup (GradeMark) usage. If an instructor gives a student submission a score through online markup, this score will be shown on the Leave Feedback page. Instructors can choose to use this score for the student's folder score, or simply use it as one data point when determining the student's overall mark.

Entering a score through the GradeMark interface:

Instructors can choose to "Use this score" on the Leave Feedback page underneath "Markup Document" and it will transfer to the Dropbox score:

Availability of GradeMark Markup

Instructors can choose when GradeMark markup will be available to students beneath the Originality Checking Options section:

Edit Other Options

After saving a Dropbox, instructors can use the Edit Other Options link, which opens a new window to the Turnitin website. This link provides access for instructors to configure rubrics in Turnitin prior to students submitting work, provides access to confirm assignment settings or update them with guidance from technical support, and will also expose future assignment options when made available by Turnitin.

Grades

Indicators on the Enter Grades page

The Enter Grades page has indicators of the current state of user submissions, and access to user submissions and assessment item pages through icons, links, and context menus.

Exported File Format

Users can export grades to a CSV or an XLSX file (the latter with the "Export to Excel" button). However, you cannot import this XLSX file; it still needs to be a TXT or CSV file.

Navigation Bars

Instructors and admins can now edit the currently-active navigation bar or manage all of their course's navigation bars by hovering over the navigation bar. The pencil tool allows users to edit the currently-active NavBar, while the gear icon allows users to manage all navigation and themes.

Pager

Filtering and Sorting Messages

From the Pager Settings area (Message alerts icon > Access Pager > Settings), users can control the filtering and sorting behavior. There are Inbox sorting options, a Friends List Filter, Friend sorting options, and Classlist sorting options.

Deleting Messages

Senders and receivers can now delete Pager messages.

No More Audio Alerts

The settings for users to choose whether or not to show the Pager notification icon in the navigation bar, and to select a sound for an audible notification of a new Pager message have been removed.

Rubrics

Import/Export Support

Version 10 offers the ability to include Rubrics in import and export packages, as well as copy Rubrics from other courses.

Edit Course

Links on the Course Administration page, accessible through the Edit Course link, can now be sorted by Category or Name (i.e. alphabetically) by clicking the appropriate button at the top of the page.

Edit Course Subpages

Homepages

Instructors can now choose a number of different homepage layouts for their courses, instead of the default three equal panels with header and footer panels. The different layouts include:

  • One: Just one panel.
  • Basic: Two panels, one large panel on the left and one smaller panel on the right.
  • Basic Plus: Three panels, one large panel on the left and one smaller panel on the right with a footer panel.
  • Large Left Panel: Four panels, one large panel on the left and one smaller panel on the right with header and footer panels.
  • Large Right Panel: Four panels, one large panel on the right and one smaller panel on the left with header and footer panels.
  • Large Middle Panel: Five panels, one large panel in the middle and two smaller panels on the left and right with header and footer panels.
  • Three Equal Panels: Five panels, three equal panels with header and footer panels.
  • Two Equal Panels: Four panels, two equal panels with header and footer panels.

The Select New Layout screen includes screenshots for each type of layout.

The option to group links in drop-down menus has been introduced in the Custom Links management area. Link groups can contain both system and custom links.

Course Offering Information

Renaming of course titles has been disabled

With version 10, myCourses now has the ability to quickly access any course through the Minibar, which is always present at the top of the page. Instructors renaming their courses and not following the standard course numbers make their courses difficult or even impossible to locate through this search.

Course titles in the new SIS are also standardized and have longer titles available to avoid potentially confusing abbreviations departments have had to deal with in the past. The course catalog is also moving to specific names instead of generic titles such as "Special Topics." Any concerns regarding a course title should be handled through proper channels with the course catalog in the Registrar's records and not temporarily addressed through myCourses. Any changes made to the Registrar's records will be reflected on myCourses with the next information feed.

If a class does need to be renamed it can be address through a support request to Academic Technology Support.

Supported Web Browsers

Windows

Browser

Status

Internet Explorer 10

Investigation

Internet Explorer 9

Supported (recommended)

Internet Explorer 8

Maintenance

Firefox (newest)

Supported (recommended)

Firefox 10.0

Maintenance

Chrome (newest)

Supported

Mac OS X

Browser

Status

Safari 5.1

Supported

Safari 5.0

Maintenance

Safari 4.0

Maintenance

Firefox (newest)

Supported (recommended)

Firefox 10.0

Maintenance

Chrome (newest)

Supported

Tablet support for Desktop Web

Browser

Status

Android Browser (newest)

Investigation

iPad Safari (newest)

Investigation

Playbook Browser (newest)

Investigation

Mobile Web

Operating System/Browser

Status

iOS (Newest)

Supported

iOS 5 (Safari 5.1)

Supported

iOS 4 (Safari 5.0)

Maintenance

iOS 3 (Safari 4)

Maintenance

Android (Newest)

Supported

Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich)

Supported

Android 3.2 (Honeycomb)

Supported

Android 2.3 (Gingerbread)

Supported

Android 2.2 (Froyo)

Supported

Android 2.1 (Eclair)

Maintenance

Android 1.6 (Donut)

Maintenance

Android 1.5 (Cupcake)

Maintenance

Blackberry 6

Supported

Vendor Status Definitions

Investigation

The browser is recognized and under consideration by Desire2Learn, but has not been tested against any versions of Desire2Learn products and may never be fully supported.

This category is mainly used for new browsers that have a significant user base, good vendor support, and are generally considered as candidates for future Desire2Learn support.

Supported

The browser and operating system combination has been fully tested by Desire2Learn.

Maintenance

The browser is not tested against new versions of Desire2Learn products, but customers can still report problems and receive support for previous versions.

A browser goes into maintenance either when a vendor officially ends support for it or Desire2Learn decides to end support for it.

A maintenance browser becomes officially unsupported after one year.

Retired Functionality

The Articles and Journal tools are no longer available. We documented the vendors intention to retire these tools in the 9.4.1 upgrade announcement in December 2011, so instructors using those tools could make alternative plans.

Changes in Terminology

Pager

Although still called the Pager in version 10, pager alerts are now displayed in the Message Alerts icon from the top minibar. The functionality is the same.

Calendar

The Events widget is now called the Calendar tool.

Classlist

Reports are now referred to as Enrollment Statistics. The functionality is the same.

Navigation

The Edit Course page now refers to Navigation as Navigation & Themes.

Navigation Themes

Templates are now called Themes.

Quizzes

The Quiz Categories button is now labeled Edit Categories.

The quarterly maintenance brings the 9.4.1 upgrade to myCourses. The changes to the public side of myCourses are outlined below.

Index

Tiny Link

RESOLVED: Events Widget disabled

Update Jan 10: The hotfix to address the Events widget performance was installed on Tue, Jan 10. The Events widget has been restored on the My Home page and on courses using the default course template.

The Events widget has been disabled on the My Home and Course Home pages due to performance concerns. In the meantime you can use the Calendar link on the navigation bar to access the tool directly. We are working with the vendor to address these as soon as possible.

If as an Instructor you have customized your Course Home to include the widget you may wish to remove it until a fix has been announced.

New: Notifications

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.

Current notification options:

  • News (Email, RSS, or SMS)
  • Dropbox deadline reminders (Email or SMS)
  • Course updates (Email only)

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.

For details please review the Notifications - User Documentation.

Updated: News management

Users can manage their own view of the News to keep only the items they desire visible. They can dismiss news items from the News widget and have access to a News tool overview where they can manage and search news items. For more information please review the News - User Documentation.

New Concepts for Instructors

All of these are detailed in the News - Instructor Documentation.

News item status (draft, published, or scheduled)

To make sure an instructor can do all the tweaking to date restrictions, release conditions, content formatting, and getting the headline just right before a news item gets posted News uses the concept of draft, published, and scheduled news items.

Major vs. Minor edits

We want instructors to be able to refine a news item, but that shouldn’t impact students’ notifications and dismissed news items. When you edit a news item, you will see a check box for major edits, that make the item visible again to any user who had dismissed it. And it generates “news item edited” event to trigger notifications (important for assignment changes and so on).

Post-dated news items

Post-dated news items previously appeared in the News widget. These items are now only displayed in the News tool overview.

Updated: Calendar changes

The new Calendar is completely redesigned and built from the ground up to focus on the presentation of course material.

Calendar management

The Calendar interface features a calendar area to add and remove calendars and quickly jump between courses in a single click. You can quickly choose to show all calendars or just your current calendar. You can view and print a syllabus for any course in just a few clicks.

Consolidated views of all calendars

The Calendar is a consolidated interface for all course calendars and features various views to consume content in a method that makes sense for you.

Agenda View

The agenda view shows details of course events and enables you to view events by date, course, or event type (assignments, discussion, tests).

Schedule View

You can access a full course schedule for any course in your calendar with a single click. This provides a view of all events in the course calendar and access to lets you subscribe to the calendar or print the entire schedule.

Quick Create

You can click on a time interval to immediately create an event in that timeslot. In conjunction with the calendar switcher, this interface makes it possible to create events for any course in just a few clicks.

Recurrence and Restrictions

When you edit a recurring event Calendar gives you the option to update all occurrences, the active occurrence only, or the active occurrence and all future occurrences. This gives you maximum flexibility for changing your recurring course events.

Calendar also lets you change the visibility of your course events using relative criteria. You can set the event to be hidden until a specific number of days, hours, or minutes before the event starts, hidden after the event ends, visible between a date range, or hidden indefinitely.

This gives you the confidence to work on your content events without exposing the events to participants.

Bulk Edit Visibility and Offset Event Dates

You can bulk edit the visibility of all events across all course calendars, if you have the proper Role. Calendar provide you with the option to set relative visibility so you can set the visibility of all events relative to their own start and end dates.

You can also bulk offset all your event dates. This is a great way to move events forwards or backwards by days, hours, or minutes.

Printing

We enabled options to customize the printing experience – from showing and hiding event details and navigation bars, as well as defining a print range. You can print a course syllabus, or all events from all of your course calendars.

We implemented smart defaults, so if you print from the Day view the event range is automatically for the day, if you print from the List view while viewing upcoming events, then the print range will default to events starting today, etc.

Subscriptions

You can subscribe to all your course calendars or individual course calendars. This enables you to easily view your myCourses course events in external calendars such as Outlook and Google Calendar, and on mobile devices such as iPhones, Android, and Blackberry. Any changes made to events in Calendar automatically feed to all devices and external calendars you have subscribed to. The details of the agenda view are also sent with the iCal feed and are displayed as links

Task Management

Keeping track of all your course tasks can be difficult, so we’re adding a tasks management interface for every user directly into the Calendar tool. Create and manage all of your course tasks alongside your events in the Calendar.

Deprecated: CSV export and import no longer supported

The vendor has removed support for exporting and importing calendar events as .csv files.

Updated: Dropbox feedback redesigned

Grading can be a time consuming and repetitive process. For this reason, the vendor set out to make the experience of assigning grades and leaving feedback more efficient, and with fewer distractions. They redesigned the layout of the page, updated the interactions, and added some exciting new capabilities.

The changes are details under Leaving feedback and grading dropbox assignments section of the Dropbox - Instructor Documentation.

New Page Layout

To make better use of browser window real estate, the new layout arranges components horizontally and removes the navigation. It shows evaluators submissions on the left and space to evaluate the submissions on the right in a format that allows evaluators to grade a list of students with submissions defined by criteria set on the folders submissions page. In place of the navigation bar, we added navigation links to all the things you might need when evaluating submissions.

View Documents in the Browser

A major goal for this redesign was to enable users to view documents in their browser without having to download them. This reduces issues with evaluators not having the appropriate software to view common file types, or issues with downloading and managing multiple copies of documents.

Deprecated: Removal of Journal and Articles Tools in March 2012 Release

The vendor has announced that that will be removing the Journal and Articles tools in their March 2012 release. These tools were deprecated in November 2009 signaling their intention to eventually remove them in favor of the Locker, Blog, and News (or Content) tools.

The quarterly maintenance brings the 9.2.1 upgrade to myCourses. The changes to the public side of myCourses are outlined below.

Index

Tiny Link

Change: The "Insert Stuff" button has been added to the Basic tab in the HTML Editor

The Insert Stuff button in the HTML Editor enables the easy embedding of media and links, from a variety of sources, wherever the HTML Editor is used. In this release, the Insert Stuff button is available on the Basic tab of the HTML Editor, making it easier for users to discover. It can still be found on the Advanced tab, too.

New: Search YouTube from Insert Stuff

In addition to the capabilities of earlier versions for easily embedding YouTube content using a YouTube link or embed code, users can now search YouTube right from Insert Stuff.

If you already have the URL or Embed Code for a YouTube video you wish to use you may still use the Enter a URL option or Enter Embed Code option in the Insert Stuff tool. This search is a convenient addition for discovery and use of YouTube videos, not a replacement of those direct methods.

Provost guidelines for captioning audio-visual media

As an instructor, please remember to take in to account the Provost's guidelines for captioning audio-visual media when including YouTube videos in your courses.

Capabilities

  • Rich search results – search results contain thumbnails, previews, and important metadata including Name, Description, Author, Number of views, and Duration.
  • Thumbnail previews – each thumbnail can be clicked to playback the video within the thumbnail
  • Preview window – each thumbnail contains an icon (on hover) that can be clicked to open a preview in a new window
  • View on YouTube – each thumbnail contains an icon (on hover) that can be clicked to view the video on YouTube in a new window

Steps to search YouTube from Insert Stuff

The Insert Stuff tool is available wherever you can use the HTML editor on myCourses, for example Content or Discussions.

  1. In the HTML Editor click on the Insert Stuff button.
  2. Select YouTube in the options to the left.
  3. Enter your search in to the Search YouTube field and then click the Search button.
  4. Click on the name of the item you wish to select, the background and outline of the item should turn blue to indicate your selection.
  5. Click the Next button to the lower right. If the button is greyed out you did not click on the name of the item to select it.
  6. On the preview screen click the Insert button to complete your work.

The poster on YouTube may restrict embedding or linking, these items will not appear in the search through myCourses.

New: Search Flickr from Insert Stuff

In addition to the capabilities of earlier versions for easily embedding Flickr content using a Flickr link or embed code, users can now search Flickr right from Insert Stuff.

Capabilities

  • Rich search results – search results contain thumbnails, previews, and important metadata including Name, Description, Tags, Author, Number of views, Rights, and Thumbnail
  • Preview window – each thumbnail can be clicked to open a new window containing a larger preview of the image
  • View on Flickr – each thumbnail contains an icon (on hover) that can be clicked to view the image on Flickr in a new window
  • Safe search results – the plug-in uses Flickr’s “SafeSearch” to filter out questionable content
  • Proper Acknowledgement - By default, include author and license information below the image after it is inserted

Steps to search Flickr from Insert Stuff

The Insert Stuff tool is available wherever you can use the HTML editor on myCourses, for example Content or Discussions.

  1. In the HTML Editor click on the Insert Stuff button.
  2. Select Flickr in the options to the left.
  3. Enter your search in to the Search YouTube field and then click the Search button.
  4. Click on the name of the item you wish to select, the background and outline of the item should turn blue to indicate your selection.
  5. Click the Next button to the lower right. If the button is greyed out you did not click on the name of the item to select it.
  6. On the preview screen you may adjust the Alternate Text, Size, and presentation of author and licensing information as desired.
    • You must enter Alternative text or check off "This is decorative," to accommodate users with a screen-reader, or you will receive a warning when you click Insert.
    • You should leave the author and licensing information enabled to respect any copyright or use restrictions the author has selected.
  7. Click the Insert button to complete your work.

The poster on Flickr may restrict embedding or linking, these items will not appear in the search through myCourses.

New: Discussions added to myCourses Mobile

Users may now participate in Discussions through the Mobile Web interface. You can compose, read, and reply to messages.

New: Easier mobile access with Content

Two additions have been made to Content on the Mobile Web Interface to allow quick access to topics and save you navigation time.

Content Bookmarks

The Mobile Web Interface now takes advantage of the Content Bookmark available in a course. This allows you quick access to content topics you have bookmarked in your course and saves you from having to drill through Content to get to it again. Since the bookmarks are shared you manage your bookmarks in Standard or the Mobile Web interface.


Bookmarks in the Tools menu


Bookmarks in the Content Tool

To bookmark a topic, use the bookmark button found on the toolbar when viewing a topic in Content. Selecting the button again will toggle it off for topics you no longer wish to keep bookmarked.


_Bookmark Button Mobile Web


Bookmark button Standard interface

Recently Viewed Topics

A new Recently Viewed Topics item is available when you enter Content in a course through Mobile Web Access. This tool tracks your recently viewed items in that course across the Mobile Web or the Standard interface.

New: Google Chrome 10 - 13 support & Firefox 6 support

This version of myCourses add support for Google Chrome 10 - 13 and Mozilla Firefox 6.

Google Chrome 14 and 15 and Mozilla Firefox 7 are development versions and will not be officially supported until a stable release has been made.

Change: Warning regarding Internet Explorer 9 Compatibility

No longer an issue with as of Fall Quarter (2121). Link has been removed

The vendor has stated that some compatibility issues have been discovered with this version and Microsoft Internet Explorer 9. Please review Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) compatibility for further information and the recommended workaround.

Change: User interface changes

A number of user interface changes to improve usability and for consistency have been added in this release.

Discussion Message Breadcrumbs

When a user clicks a link in a Discussion Post Notification message to open a message for reading in a browser window, the message viewing screen now contains breadcrumb navigation so that the user can easily navigate to the Forum or Topic for performing other actions within the system.

“Back To” Links Made More Visible

In Content, Discussions, and Question Library, the “Back to” action links are now easier for users to find, and the text and icon usage are consistent with other tools in the system.


Back to links before


Back to links after

Two-Level Navigation Bars Updated

A number of tools have their navigation structure updated to replace multi-level navigation bars with a more consistent navigation structure with an Areas panel on the left side of the tool above the Instructions panel, and one main level of navigation at the top of the tool. Updated tools are Quizzes, Competencies, Surveys, Blog, and Self Assessments.


Two-level navigation before


Two-level navigation after

Additional tweaks

A number of dark heading bands have been removed from the interface in this release. The use of larger text on a white background is now consistent with other parts of the system and provides an improved, lighter, look and feel to the updated tools.

A number of tables throughout the system have been updated to soften lines between cells, providing consistency with other tables in the system and a lighter feel.

Tools without any content will show a more meaningful message instead of a blank page. Instructors will be prompted with instructions on how to add to that tool.

The Student role on myCourses is now allowed to edit their own Discussion messages.

When viewing a message they authored, students will now see the Edit button in the tools at the top of the message.

When any user views an edited message, an icon will be displayed in the header next to the date ( ). Hovering your mouse pointer over this icon will show the 'Last Edit' date. We were waiting for the vendor to provide an indicator before enabling this option for the Student role as there was concerns about changes to messages being used for grading purposes.

To review the changes made on a message click on the History button in the tools at the top of the message. This will take you to a page where you will be able to review each version of the message.

Instructors may restrict editing of messages using the Locking/Read-Only restrictions available when configuring a Topic. A locked topic will not allow new posts or edits to be made by non-Staff roles. When editing a topic these restrictions will be found towards the end of the form, you may need to click on 'Show locking/Read-Only options' to expand the options. You can then lock a topic manually or set a date and time when the topic will be locked automatically which can be useful for weekly discussion topics. Remember to click the Save button to confirm any changes.

New: Equation editor now supports MathML and LaTeX

The HTML Editor now includes additional options that enable you to input math and scientific notation in your preferred method. In addition to the Graphical Editor, you can now enter equations in MathML and LaTeX format.

You can edit equations in the format they were entered in; however, myCourses stores and displays all equations in MathML format to ensure consistency and accessibility. Users can individually choose to display equations as inline MathML or using the Java applet from their preferences found on the My Home page.

New: Navigation bars redesigned

The navigation bar redesign encompasses the presentation of the bars as well as the management tool.

Navigation bars are no longer presented in a separate frame and now take advantage of modern scripting. This allows them to scale better to user font size preferences and allows for proper viewing and use on smaller screens such as netbooks or mobile phones.

New: User time zone support

Users may now set their time zone in the Preferences to customize the time displayed on items through out myCourses. Access the setting on the My Home page under the Preferences link on the Language & Region tab.

This is only for object in myCourses such as calendar events, dropboxes, etc. It does not change the times typed as text by a user, such as in messages or in a Content file.

New: Profile pictures now included in the Classlist and Discussion messages

Edit your profiles quickly by clicking on your name in the navigation bar, or use the Profile link found on the My Home page.

Inappropriate or offensive imagery reported to support will be investigated and may be removed.

Update: Role Switch

The role switch should not "forget" your chosen role any longer. You should not see information available to your assigned role when viewing the course under another role.

Update: Release Conditions

When you define a set of release conditions on an object (i.e. a quiz) there is now an option to conditionally release the object when all or any (one or more) of the conditions are met. Previously, objects were only released once all conditions were met. There are also new criteria operators. The condition types, Score on a Quiz and Grade value on Grade Items, now include two new criteria operators: != (not equal to) and Not Between.

Update: Manage Files

Manage Files features a new, optimized user interface that handles complex file structures with fewer refreshes. Many functions are now available in a drop down menu seen by clicking on the file name. The vendor has also expanded support for Unicode file names

Update: Accessibility improvements for screen readers to enhance navigation

Bug: Course title not clickable to return to the course home

You must use the Course Home link on the navigation bar to return to the front page of the course. The vendor changes to the navigation bar took away this functionality to the course title. It has been reported and they have added a feature request to return that functionality.

Resolved: My Library link currently not working

Resolved

The vendor released a hotfix to address this bug on Friday, June 4th.

This is due to a bug with custom links in the navigation bar where the course number is not being passed properly. We are hoping for a vendor fix before courses begin. If one is not provided we will be taking a work around approach with the start of Summer courses on June 7th.

In the meantime all E-Reserve materials are always available through the library catalog. Visit http://albert.rit.edu/search/r to search reserve materials by course number or instructor.

Summer Quarter 20094 and Fall Quarter 20101 course shells are available to faculty.

You will find the quarter in your My Courses listing on the Instructor tab under the Courses category. If you have a a list of Last 10 Accessed courses instead then you have more then 150 courses associated with your account and you can search on the quarter code ( i.e. 20094) to easily see your assigned course

Quarter Dates

Summer 20094

20094 and 20101 Courses Generated

Apr 19

20094 Student enrollments added

May 3

20094 Courses open to Students

Jun 1

20094 Classes Begin

Jun 7

Deadline for 20094 course merge requests

Jun 10

Fall 20101

20101 Courses Generated

Apr 19

20101 Student enrollments added

Jul 18

20101 Courses open to Students

Aug 30

20101 Classes Begin

Sep 6

Deadline for 20101 course merge requests

Sep 9

Answers to common questions

Please use the following links to get answers to some of the common questions. Remember you can always search the help and resources at the top of every page.

Spring 20093 Courses

Spring Quarter 20093 course shells are available to faculty.

You will find the quarter under the Courses category in your My Courses listing.

Please remember, all new course shells are empty.

Answers to common questions you might have are in our Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I copy a previous offering in to my current course to reuse portions of it?
  • Where is my course?
    • Please contact your academic scheduling officer first to confirm you have been assigned in the Registrars records before contacting myCourses support.
  • How do I remove a course I am no longer teaching?

To merge courses please use the Course Merge Request form found on the My Home page in the right-hand column following the News.

20093 Courses Generated

Jan 25

20093 Student enrollments added

Feb 8

20093 Courses open to Students

Mar 1

20093 Classes Begin

Mar 8

Deadline for 20093 course merge requests

Mar 11