Recent Posts

Nov 5 2019

Web Accessibility Improvements to CoursePlus

Making the web accessible to everyone is not only a public health issue, it's simply the right thing to do. The Center for Teaching and Learning has long pushed to make the content offered in online courses (and CoursePlus in general) accessible. From a core, accessible PowerPoint template used for all lectures to interactive captions on every online lecture, accessibility is an important part of the work that CTL performs every day.

The CoursePlus web application has long had basic accessibility features built in to make it easier for screen readers and other assistive technology to work with the site. Technology and accessibility standards keep changing, however, and CoursePlus needs to keep up with those changes.

You may have noticed a recent change to the color of links and some other items on the CoursePlus main pages. These changes were made to make the site more accessible to people with vision issues, and to meet more modern accessibility standards. Additionally, a lot of behind the scenes work was done to make pages — particularly those outside of an individual class — more accessible to those who navigate solely by keyboard.

There's always improvements to be made, and the CoursePlus team continues to work on improving navigability and accessibility throughout CoursePlus. While you may not see changes as obvious as link colors changing in the future, rest assured that the CoursePlus team continues to refine how the site works to make it a better experience for anyone using assistive technology.

Posted by Brian Klaas at 7:40 AM - Categories: CoursePlus

Oct 8 2019

Highlights of What's New in CoursePlus for the First Term

CoursePlus is always changing. Faculty, staff, and students alike request that new features be added or altered. The team that builds CoursePlus doesn't stop this work, even in the summer. Here are some important changes to CoursePlus from the past few months that you may have missed due to end of academic year busyness or summer break:

A lot more happened to CoursePlus in the last few months, but these are the highlights. There is a full, detailed list of changes to CoursePlus broken down by month available for you to view at any time. You can also follow the @courseplus Twitter account for changes as they happen.

If you have questions about any of these changes, please contact CTL Help. They're always happy to answer your questions.

Posted by Brian Klaas at 11:07 AM - Categories: CoursePlus

Aug 21 2019

Peer Assessment Updates for the Start of First Term

The CoursePlus team is constantly fielding feedback from faculty, staff, and students. Peer assessments are complex activities in any course, and each course runs their peer assessments a little differently from any other course. Building a single tool that accommodates the ways in which everyone runs their peer assessments requires the CoursePlus team to continually refine the Peer Assessment tool.

To that end, a number of changes were made to the Peer Assessment user interface to make it easier to discover and use the many options in the tool, including:

  • It's much more obvious where faculty enter their own feedback on a student assessment.
  • Instructions on sending results are now displayed when there are results to send.
  • Details about “What to show when students are emailed their results” have been expanded and clarified.
  • The controls on the main page of the Peer Assessment tool have been reorganized to group similar functions together.
  • Checkboxes on the report page have been moved and organized to make their purpose clearer.
  • The "n/n" counter column on the main report page has been removed to reduce visual clutter.

The "Assessment Summary" report — the report that shows the collected responses from other students about a single student in the class — has received a lot of attention as well. The following changes have been made to that report:

  • The report looks more like a plain-text report, and less like an interactive form. The primary text font on the report has been made slightly smaller and uses an easier-to-read font.
  • You no longer have to scroll through individual cells in the rubric to read long-form text in that cell. 
  • You no longer have to scroll through long-form student comments on a criteria in a rubric.
  • A link has been added to the end of the report to jump back to the top of the report.
  • An "Add faculty feedback" button now appears at the top of the report which, when clicked, immediately jumps you to the part of the report where you can enter your own feedback for the student.
  • All all scores now consistently show to 2 decimal places.

Additionally, a new report has been added that shows who each student assessed — the "Who Assessed Who" report. This report makes it easy to quickly see the other students to which student was assigned.

We hope that all of these changes make it easier for you to use the Peer Assessment tool in your courses. If you have any questions about these changes, or have additional feedback about the Peer Assessment tool, please contact CTL Help!

Posted by Brian Klaas at 10:53 AM - Categories: CoursePlus

Previous Posts

Aug 7
Jul 25

End of Access to Pre-AY19 LiveTalks in CoursePlus

Posted by Brian Klaas at 1:51 PM - Categories: CoursePlus |

Jul 9

More Accurate Reporting of Abandoned Quiz Attempts

Posted by Brian Klaas at 9:13 AM - Categories: CoursePlus |

Jun 27

PathFinder Gets a User Interface Overhaul

Posted by Brian Klaas at 10:37 AM - Categories: CoursePlus |

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