CTL Blog

Reminder: The Rich Text Editor in CoursePlus Has an Equation Editor and a Drawing Pad!

July 08, 2014 | 2 Minute Read

If you never taught or took an online course prior to the merging of CoursePlus and the old online courses system, you may not know that the rich text editor found throughout CoursePlus has two very powerful features: the ability to render LaTeX equations and a drawing pad that lets you insert drawings right into the rich text editor.

If you look at the rich text editor in the discussion forum, quizzes, or elsewhere in an online course site, you will now see the Greek Sigma symbol as a button in the editor toolbar.

Equation Editor Button

Clicking this button will bring up the LaTeX equation editing window.

Equation Editor window

You paste in syntactically correct LaTeX markup, and the result is rendered immediately in a preview. Clicking OK to close this window inserts the equation wherever it your cursor is placed in the rich text editor box.

The other new button in the rich text editor toolbar is the paintbrush button:

Paintbrush Button

Clicking on this button will bring up the drawing board tool, which allows you to quickly sketch or draw something (or mark up an equation or create a 2x2 table, etc).

Drawing board tool

Once you click the OK button, the image is saved, and then that image then becomes part of the content of your discussion forum post, email message, quiz question, etc. This is a great tool for marking up something that isn't possible to type.

These tools are available throughout CoursePlus, wherever there is a rich text editor, with one notable exception. The equation editor tool does not work within the class email tool. The reason for this is because the rendering of equations inside the Web browser requires code to execute. Email clients do not allow code to execute when you open an email message because that would be a major security risk. As such, the equation editor isn't available in the rich text editor inside the class email tool.

We hope that you find these additions to the overall CoursePlus toolbox useful. If you have any feedback, we'd like to hear it!