Winter Break maintenance schedule (Happy Holidays!)

Congratulations for surviving the Fall semester, and we hope you get some rest and relaxation over the holidays. Our Academic Technologies will also get a break and upgrade….

Moodle will upgrade to version 3.3 on December 28. There will be significant aesthetic changes to the Dashboard page, but we hope these changes will make it easier to navigate current courses for students and faculty. Additionally, targeted lists of what need to be done per-course will be available in a new Timeline view. We hope this has a positive impact on productivity for students and faculty!

Panopto will update on December 21, resulting in downtime from 8:00pm to 12:00am, EST. Panopto’s web interface will upgrade, but Panopto Recorder software changes should not be required.

Turnitin will update December 27, resulting in downtime from 11:00am to 8:00pm, EST.

Welcome back for Fall 2017, training on Moodle’s new look

As another semester begins, we welcome you back on our most popular educational technology platform, Moodle! Thanks for clicking through for vital information about how to use Moodle and how to get access to the correct information for your course.

What happened to Moodle?? Where are my grades, dates, etc.?

Moodle got a visual upgrade at the end of Summer to facilitate better use on mobile devices and boost browser compatibility. If it looks weird or is throwing odd errors, simply check with https://updatemybrowser.org. Contact the Help Desk if you need assistance.

As far as using Moodle, we hope the new user tour gets you on track. Further training is available below or by appointment if you contact us.

 Making changes to your schedule?

Don’t forget to let us know! We do periodic updates through the drop/add period, but we can only do them on a daily basis due to our student management system. We will get you in the courses you add, but it could take up to 24 hours. If you need access now, just let us know here.

Drops are not automatically processed, so if you drop a course, you’ll stay in it on Moodle until you or your professor asks us to remove you. Again, just let us know here and we’ll take care of things!

End of summer updates: Significant Moodle visual change 8-18-17

Moodle visual update Friday, August 18:

Moodle will get a visual upgrade on August 18, as previously alluded to when we got a core upgrade to version 3.2. This update helps with cross-device and -browser compatibility. While it will be a drastic change for all existing users, we hope that the changes help standardize user experience and allow more mobile-friendly support for existing Moodle features.

For Panopto Recorder users:

The Panopto recorder was recently updated. When users open the recorder, they should be prompted to update, but in case you aren’t, here are some download links:

Moodle has been updated to version 3.2!

The update mostly affects faculty, but students may notice some changes, like the Messaging and Notifications icons on the top-right. One more change is coming before Fall 2017!

I’m not getting Moodle emails! (Find out why and how to fix it!)

Since the college migrated users to Microsoft’s hosted Office 365 email solution, we’ve gotten quite a few reports of missing Moodle emails from students. Office365 is so “smart” that it’s attempting to filter your emails based on your preferences. So if you’ve deleted 10 past Moodle emails from your professor, then it “learns” that you find these emails annoying and starts to remove them for you. Maybe homework updates are annoying to you, a wonderful and always prepared student– but a class cancellation or relocation for the day? Missing that announcement is REALLY ANNOYING. Moodle is sending the emails, Office 365 is not delivering them.

So how can you fix this problem?

Our Office 365 team has made several efforts to contain this problem, starting with putting the email’s address on a whitelist. This brought back functionality for most users, but the “smart” Clutter  and Junk tools may continue to create barriers for you. Let’s climb over them together:

  • Turn Clutter off: If you can manage your emails on your own, without algorithms trying to guess what you want, just turn off this feature.
  • Turn Junk Mail off: You may see an uptick in unwanted emails, but you may be surprised to see things you’ve been missing, too.
  • Keep Junk Mail on, verify emails are “allowed”: Go to your Blocked Senders settings in email (open a new tab, log in to email, then click here). Verify that donotreply@blackboard.com is NOT in your blocked senders. Heck, go a step further and add it to your Safe Senders!

While it seems silly that every user should have to do this, not necessarily everyone is required to. This should help those of you who notice missing correspondence rectify that problem, but many users don’t have any problems at all.

If missing messages persist, contact help@kings.edu.

Update for Faculty: Moodle/Turnitin integration (good news!)

On 2-2-17 we had a service pack applied to our Moodle site. Part of this update is that Turnitin functionality for “old” Turnitin assignments has been restored! This is great news for those who may not have time to upgrade their assignments through the semester. However, we still strongly suggest faculty consider re-creating Turnitin Assignments using “Turnitin Assignment 2,” as support for the original plugin is likely to be discontinued in the future, though we’re not sure when. Isn’t it better to be prepared?

Go to “Add an activity or resource” and choosing “Turnitin Assignment 2.” Prompts are similar to the previous version, but one enhancement is due dates being set on the Settings screen, not a separate page.

For those interested in learning about the new integration, we’re hosting the following session through CELT:

A Newer Way to Turnitin
Academic & Instructional Technology Staff
Thursday, February 16 at 3:30 p.m.
Molewski Room, Sheehy-Farmer Campus Center
Turnitin’s integration with Moodle was recently updated. Now that we’ve had some time to get to know it, we want to show it off and answer any questions you might have. This update introduces a much more streamlined assignment creation and editing process. There’s also better rubric management, e-raters that try to pick up technical issues, new “tutor” roles, and PeerMark online-peer-review functionality.

Welcome back and Moodle update

Welcome back from Winter Break! We hope your holidays were happy and enjoyable and you’re ready to get working on the Spring semester 2017!

If you have any courses missing, extra courses you dropped, students in your classes that don’t belong, trouble logging in, or anything else, contact us.

Moodle was also upgraded over break to 3.1. You may notice slight changes, but the major shift is assignment grading. Faculty may benefit from this short video.

Students will be able to view extensive feedback as part of their feedback process, as well.