April’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most. The date the updates will take place changes from month to month. You can expect the following updates to be in place by the end of the month.)

Awards – Added to Release Conditions

Awards have been added to existing release conditions

User Progress – Course Access progress indicator

A Course Access progress indicator is now included in the User Progress tool, indicating the days on which a course was accessed. The progress indicator is available from the Course Access Progress Indicator page and the Course Access overview page within the Summary. Download States for content modules, course files, and for all content are available within Content Progress.

Learners and instructors can review a summary view of the Course Access for a learner.

Course Access Summary indicating when a user last logged in and accessed the course.

Course Access Summary indicating when a user last logged in and accessed the course.

The Course Access progress indicator provides a more granular login history:

The Course Access indicator in the User Progress tool

The Course Access indicator in the User Progress tool

Administrators can include the Course Access progress indicator in the User Progress report:

Specific progress indicators that are selected by Administrators appear in the User Progress tool.

Specific progress indicators that are selected by Administrators appear in the User Progress tool.

March’s Continuous Delivery Update

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most. The date the updates will take place changes from month to month. You can expect the following updates to be in place by the end of the month.)

Quizzes – Export quiz event log of all quiz attempts

Previously, instructors were able to view the event log of individual attempts to look for patterns or cheating.

Now, the Export Event Logs button on the Grade Quiz page enables instructors to export the quiz event log of all quiz attempts made by learners of a quiz to a Comma Separated Value (CSV) file for offline analysis. The IP address of all users’ actions is included in the event log.

February’s Continuous Delivery Update

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most. The date the updates will take place changes from month to month. You can expect the following updates to be in place by the end of the month.)

Release conditions – NOT operator support

New release condition types that support the NOT operator have been added to D2L Learning Environment to support or identify users who have not completed course items. The following 10 release conditions are available:

  • Incomplete checklist – Has not completed checklist: <name>
  • Incomplete checklist item – Has not completed checklist item: <name>
  • Competency not achieved – Has not achieved competency: <name>
  • Learning objective not achieved – Has not achieved learning objective: <name>
  • Content topic not visited – Has not visited content topic: <name>
  • No discussion posts authored in topic – {No threads added to discussion topic: <forum>/<topic>, No threads or replies added to discussion topic: <forum>/<thread>}
  • No submission to dropbox – Has not submitted to dropbox folder: <name>
  • No grade score – Not graded on grade item: <name>
  • No completed quiz attempt – Has not completed an attempt on the quiz <name>
  • No completed survey attempt – Has not completed an attempt on the survey <name>

The new release conditions can be used anywhere release conditions are supported in D2L Learning Environment, including Intelligent Agents. The new options provide additional choices for course setup and user tracking.

October’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most. The date the updates will take place changes from month to month. You can expect the following updates to be in place by the end of the month.)

Copy Course Components – improved copy content settings

The Content Display Settings copy the settings controlled by course configuration, including Content Arrangement and Navigation display options, and completion status tracking. You can access these settings from the Content > Settings popup window. Previously, if you selected Content display settings from the Copy Selected Components workflow, these items were not properly copied. This update ensures that the Content Settings are all copied as expected when you use the Copy Course Components option.

The middle part of this dialog (Content Authoring) contains user settings that are not included in a course copy.

10-5-3-1

Bulk Course Configuration – Content Display Settings

QuickLinks tool no longer inserts http:// by default

The URL field in the Quicklinks tool no longer has http:// automatically inserted to assist users in forming URLs with correct syntax. The field is now blank before you enter a URL.

User Progress – Identify when learners access their courses

In the User Progress tool, instructors can now easily identify when learners access their courses. From the new Course Access indicator, instructors can view detailed course access information such as when a learner last accessed the course and the total number of days they accessed the course.

The Course Access indicator in the User Progress tool

The Course Access indicator in the User Progress tool

User Progress – Identify if learners download content

In the User Progress tool, instructors can now identify if learners download content at the topic, module, or table of contents level. Instructors can view download metrics from the Summary and Content indicators for a specific course. When combined with other content access metrics, this provides instructors with a more detailed picture of learner engagement.

Content Progress showing a download from Table of Contents (all course files), a Module download (Week 2), and individual Topic downloads

Content Progress showing a download from Table of Contents (all course files), a Module download (Week 2), and individual Topic downloads

 

September’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most.)

Changes to Copy Selected Components

In order to mitigate the risk that large courses may result in a timeout for users, the process is moving to an asynchronous workflow. Moving the selected components workflow into an asynchronous job avoids copy timeouts when you are copying large courses. You are able to start the copy process and check the progress on the History page, which enables you to perform other tasks while the copy process is underway.

Copy Course Components, Import/Export/Copy Components page showing the ability to select View History

Copy Course Components, Import/Export/Copy Components page showing the ability to select View History

Copy Course Components - View History

Copy Course Components – View History

Groups – Usability and administration enhancements

Enhancements have been made to the Groups tool that enable learners to join groups more easily, and give instructors and administrators the option to set up and manage groups more efficiently. The enhancements are as follows:

  • When creating or editing a group category, the Enrollment Type called # of Groups of # – Self Enrollment has been changed to # of Groups, Capacity of # – Self Enrollment to clarify its usage.
  • When creating or editing a group category, a Group Prefix field is now present.
  • When creating or editing a group category that supports self enrollment, a Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date option is now available.
  • When creating or editing a category, and when Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date is selected, the Allocate unenrolled users after Self Enrollment Expiry Date option can also be selected.
  • Once a category and groups with capacities have been created, capacity markers display (in the form x/y where x is the number of enrolled students and y is the capacity).
  • Learners can now see the names of the members of each group before they enroll.
  • Learners can now leave a group after they have self enrolled if they choose to enroll into a different group.
  • When enrolling learners in groups, there is a configurable Advanced Search Options link that opens a custom search and enroll page, if instructors want to use additional data to create groups of learners.
  • New configuration variables have been added that can be turned on to enable enhancements.
Updated Enrollment Type called # of Groups, Capacity of # - Self Enrollment  and Group Prefix field on the New Category page

Updated Enrollment Type called # of Groups, Capacity of # – Self Enrollment and Group Prefix field on the New Category page

Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date option and Allocate unenrolled users after Self Enrollment Expiry Date option

Set Self Enrollment Expiry Date option and Allocate unenrolled users after Self Enrollment Expiry Date option

Capacity marker and Leave Group option on updated Groups page

Capacity marker and Leave Group option on updated Groups page

Configurable Advanced Search Options link on Enroll Users page

Configurable Advanced Search Options link on Enroll Users page

My Awards tool featuring Badges and Certificates

The new My Awards tool enables Instructors to automatically award Badges and Certificates based on release conditions, or to award or revoke them manually.

To add a new badge to a course, the instructor can complete the New Award page (under Assessments > Awards > Add Award to Course > Create Award) and define the name and description of the award, and set attributes for the award type, sharing, expiry, notification, the location of the image library to use to create the badges, and Issuer information. The image library contains some default icons you can use to create badges and default templates for certificates.

Adding an Award. The image shows the New Award page that the Administrator uses to add new awards to the system.

Adding an Award. The image shows the New Award page used to add new awards.

After Badges and Certificates are added, Instructors can click the Edit Properties link under the Award to set the conditions of earning the Award.

Classlist awards page, showing the listing of awards given to Learners in the course

Classlist awards page, showing the listing of awards given to Learners in the course

Learners can see a list of the awards they have received and the available awards by going to Assessments > My Awards.

The My Awards page lets learners view the badges and certificates that they have achieved, or are available if they meet the eligibility requirements.

The My Awards page lets learners view the badges and certificates that they have achieved, or are available if they meet the eligibility requirements.

News – Recover deleted News items

Users can now restore deleted news items.

The Restore option from the More Actions button on the News page

The Restore option from the More Actions button on the News page

The Restore News page showing a News item that was accidentally deleted

The Restore News page showing a News item that was accidentally deleted

User Progress – Better metrics for time viewing topics

In the Summary and Content Progress pages, User Progress contains statistics on the amount of time a learner spends in a content topic. The update to this feature corrects the inaccuracies that can occur when a user session times out or loses connectivity. As a result, the statistics for the amount of time a user spends in a content topic are accurate to the default frequency of 10 minutes. The time spent statistics for other scenarios (such as viewing a content topic and then browsing to the next topic or to another tool) continue to capture the exact duration.

This solution also improves how User Progress tracks time spent in a content topic when the user switches between browser tabs.

Pass This to Students/Faculty New to Desire2Learn

We have created a page on the Washburn website to help direct new users of Desire2Learn how to get into the system and show them getting started videos. We hope this will be helpful to pass along to students and new faculty at the beginning of a semester. You can find it here: D2L Getting Started.

August’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most.)

In Discussions

Top Score Details screen now has consistent appearance

All locations of the Topic Score Details screen in the Discussions tool now have a consistent presentation across all incidences of the screen. Instructors have access to the Topic Score Details from the following locations:

  • Assess Student link in the context menu of a thread or reply post.
  • Topic Score link on the Users tab of the Access Topic
  • Student link on the Assessments tab of the Access Topic
  • Submissions button in the Grades tool on the Enter Grades
  • Submissions button in the Grades tool on the Grade Student The Top Score Details screen is available when you click the student’s name from the Enter Grades area.
  • Submissions button from the Grade Category page, available when you click Grade All from the context menu of a category from the Enter Grades or Manage Grades
  • Submissions button from the Grade Item page, available when you click Grade All from the context menu of a grade item from the Enter Grades or Manage Grades

Note: There is one incidence of Topic Score Details that was not changed to be consistent with the other incidences of the page. The instance available when you select a post from a topic, and then select More Actions > Assess has some behavioral differences from the remaining Topic Score Details incidences. As a result, no changes were made to that incidence.

10-5-1-1

In Dropbox

Track deleted submissions

The File Submissions area of Dropbox has a log that can be filtered to determine if and when a learner submitted a file, and whether the learner or instructor deleted the submission. If a submission was accidentally deleted, you can restore it from the submission log.

10-5-1-2

In Respondus

Respondus Dashboard Integration Enhancement

Instructors can access all the browser settings from a single location in the Quiz Management interface. There is one location in the Respondus dashboard, which removes the ambiguity over where to enable or disable the requirement. Instructors with Edit Quiz Properties or View Quiz Setup permissions can access Respondus Dashboard from Manage Quizzes if Respondus LockDown Browser is enabled for a course.

Improved quiz workflow

This optional update significantly streamlines the user’s experience in taking a quiz secured by Respondus LockDown Browser. When an assessment is configured to require Respondus LockDown Browser, the browser will launch in a new window. If the Respondus LockDown Browser is not already installed, the user is prompted to install it before starting their quiz.

July’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most.)

In Content

Overdue assignments list added to Course Schedule view

Learners can view an actionable list of overdue assignments in the new Overdue tab in the Course Schedule view of the Content tool. Course activities that have a due date appear automatically in the Overdue list as soon as the due date passes. Only activities with an end date later than the due date (or no end date) appear in the list, to ensure that learners have time to complete the overdue activities. Learners can access the activity directly from the list to complete it. Once the activity has been completed, it disappears from the list, and when all overdue items are completed, the Overdue tab disappears from the Course Schedule view.

The Overdue tab conveniently lists all overdue course tasks in one place so learners can more easily manage their time and workload. Overdue activities are sorted by most to least overdue.

10-5-1

Copy Course Components – Include associated files

This update makes it easier and faster for instructors to include associated files when copying components from one course to another. Previously, instructors had to use the Course Files tool as well as select content in order to copy all associated files and prevent broken links. Now, when instructors use the Include associated files feature, D2L imports all files associated with selected course components to the new course. Users can select which content modules to copy rather than having to copy them all.

By default, this feature is turned on.

10-5-2

When the box is checked, all course files associated with the course component are copied to the new course.

Links and images in copied files remain intact. In addition, for content topics and modules, the feature analyzes HTML, HTM, and CSS files to retrieve any files referenced within them, such as embedded images, media, JavaScript, and CSS files. All these files are also copied, maintaining links and styles.

At this time, only direct links to files are processed. A D2L Quicklink is not processed. Instructors must manually select assignments, discussion topics, and content outside the course to copy any items associated by Quicklinks. A warning alerts users to what files did not copy.

In Quizzes

Respondus LockDown Browser® – Special Access Override

This update significantly improves the instructor’s experience when granting users special access to a quiz secured by Respondus LockDown Browser. Instructors can now exempt individual users from requiring Respondus LockDown Browser when taking a quiz instead of having to exempt all users in order to accommodate one user’s needs.

10-5-3

New option to exempt users on Add Special Access to Quiz page

User with special access shown on Edit Quiz page

User with special access shown on Edit Quiz page

June’s Continuous Delivery Updates

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most.)

In Discussions

Discussions – Assess learners from a thread

The Assess Student context menu item is now available for the reading view in the discussion thread context menu on the Thread List (View Topic) page in Discussions. This change improves workflow experience by saving users a click from the previous workflow, which required users to click on a thread before assessing a learner.

10-4-12-1

In Assignment Grader iPad App

D2L Assignment Grader – Hide courses past their end date

Instructors can now hide courses that are still active but past their end date when viewing and grading assignments in D2L Assignment Grader. This feature helps filter the Dropbox folder list in D2L Assignment Grader to display current courses only.

10-4-12-2

In Respondus Lockdown Browser

Respondus LockDown Browser® – Improved quiz workflow

This update significantly streamlines the user’s experience in taking a quiz secured by Respondus LockDown Browser. When an assessment is configured to require Respondus LockDown Browser, the user now launches directly into that assessment within Respondus LockDown Browser without leaving their current browser. If the Respondus LockDown Browser is not already installed, the user is prompted to install it before starting their quiz.

10.4 Upgrade Change List

(This list is not all-inclusive. It only shows those changes that will impact faculty the most.)

In Content

Creating Video or Audio Topics

In 10.3 and older, instructors needed to create either file or link topics to add a video and audio to their course. In 10.4, instructors can now create video and audio topics directly in the Content tool. Video and audio topics are listed in modules with a special icon to distinguish them from other types of files and link topics. There are shortcuts for some websites, enabling users to create videos by simply copying and pasting the URL of the video. Others can be created by pasting its HTML embed code in the Enter Url or Embed Code field. There is an option to upload video files directly to the course HOWEVER we advise that if you want to upload videos, utilize the Washburn Video Server (which directly integrates with Desire2Learn) by contacting video@washburn.edu. Also learners can now listen to audio topics without having to download them first.

User interface improvements for topics

D2L updated the user interface for viewing content topics and activities with the goals of improving usability and minimizing clutter. Previously, all information surrounding Activity Details, Learning Objectives, and Completion Summary displayed on content topic pages as three stacked, collapsible areas. Now, these areas display as separate tabs, improving discoverability of different areas, progressive disclosure of information, and aesthetics.

topic-tabs

In Quizzes

Quiz Item Analysis

Additional statistics are now available in the Quiz Statistics area to assist instructors in evaluating how well students perform on quiz questions after the questions are submitted for evaluation.

  • User Stats includes the standard deviation and existing class average for the overall quiz.
  • Question Stats now includes standard deviation, discrimination index, and point biserial per question, along with the standard deviation and existing class average for the overall quiz.
  • Question Details now includes standard deviation, discrimination index, and average grade achieved per question.

item-analysis

Restrictions Tab

D2L reorganized the Timing section in the Restrictions tab that displays when creating and editing quizzes. Changes include reorganizing the order of form fields and re-labeling form fields to be more descriptive and accurate.

Quiz timer

The Time Remaining clock in a quiz now displays seconds as well as minutes and hours to provide better information to users taking a quiz. The clock also subtly flashes for the following times:

  • If a quiz is set for more than an hour long, the clock flashes when there are 10 minutes remaining.
  • If a quiz is set for less than an hour long, the clock flashes when there are 5 minutes remaining.
  • Regardless of the set timer, the clock flashes when there is 1 minute remaining.

If the quiz uses an unenforced time limit and displays a clock, the timer ticks upwards instead of downwards to indicate how much time has been spent.

quiz-timer

Assessment Tab

D2L repositioned the “Automatic Grade – Allow attempt to be set as graded immediately upon completion” option. Previously, the positioning of this option caused some users to miss it when configuring or editing quizzes. The option is now at the top of the page so that it is immediately noticeable and less likely to be missed by users when configuring or editing quizzes.

automatic-grade

Ability to Preview Random Question Sections

D2L improved the process for previewing random question sections so that it is easier. Now, users just need to access the Edit Quiz page for the quiz with random sections they want to view and click the section name in the Quiz Questions area to review all random questions assigned to the quiz.

random-section-preview

In Dropbox

Delete Individual Dropboxes

We improved the workflow for deleting dropbox folders from the main Dropbox Folders page to align with established web patterns. Instructors can now delete dropbox folders from their individual context menus or from the More Actions button.

delete-dropbox

In Discussions

Reintroducing Grid View

D2L reintegrated the grid view in the Discussions tool after receiving feedback from our users indicating that this view is essential for easily identifying learner and instructor participation, unread content, new content, and themes within Discussion topics.

grid-view

Users can now set their preference to use grid view as default instead of reading view when viewing topics in the Discussions tool if they have the appropriate permissions. The ability to select grid view as their default view for topics is now located in Account Settings as well as in the Discussions Settings area.

For example, if a user selects grid view as their default view, but wants to view a topic using reading view, they can select View Topic in Reading View from the context menu of the topic. Selecting View Topic or clicking on the topic name will allow the user to view the topic using grid view.

Similarly, if a user selects reading view as their default view, but wants to assess a topic using grid view, they can select View Topic in Grid View from the context menu of the topic they want to assess. They can also select View Topic or click on the topic name to assess the topic using reading view.

Users can customize their Discussions settings for using grid view. They have the ability to set whether they can see descriptions for discussion topics and if posts appear as threaded or unthreaded, among other settings.

grid-view-settings

Bulk Delete Forums and Topics

This change allows users to maintain forums and topics more efficiently by giving them the ability to delete multiple items.

discussion-bulk-delete

In Grades

Save and Close Buttons

The Save and Close button is now available in Grades.

save-and-close

Repositioned # Per Page Drop-down List

D2L made the # per page drop-down list on the Enter Grades pages more discoverable for instructors by moving it more to the left of the page. Previously, instructors frequently missed this control in large grade books because discovery of it required left-to-right scrolling. Now, the option of increasing the amount of users displayed on the page is more apparent for instructors, improving the page’s usability for large grade books.

grades-number-per-page

Identify Hidden Final Grades

Previously, when Final Grades were released to students, an open eye icon (open-eye) displayed in the Final Grade column of the Enter Grades page. Now, a closed eye icon (new-closed-eye) displays in the Final Grade column beside unreleased final grades and an updated open eye icon (new-open-eye) displays in the Final Grade column beside released final grades.

released-grades