D2L (the company that owns Brightspace) uses Continuous Delivery to update our Brightspace system. The Continuous Delivery model gives us regular monthly updates allowing for incremental and easily integrated changes with no downtime required for our Brightspace system.
Our Continuous Delivery update occurs on the 4th Thursday of each month. D2L provides release notes to help users stay up-to-date with the changes.
Here are a few updates in the February 2021/20.21.2 release that were added to our system this month:
1) Accommodations – Quiz accommodations
This new feature enables instructors to grant quiz accommodations to learners through the Classlist tool. Instructors can assign accommodations to specific students that apply across all quizzes instead of applying them on a quiz by quiz basis.
Accommodation options currently available include: more time to complete quizzes at the course level and the ability to bypass right-click restrictions in quizzes. The right-click restriction in quizzes is the ability for learners to right-click in the quiz while taking the quiz.
Once granted, these accommodations apply to all quiz activities in a course for that learner. The additional time can be applied in terms of quiz time multipliers (for example, 1.5x quiz time) or +minutes (for example, an additional 30 minutes) on every quiz in a course.
Quiz-specific Special Access can overwrite an accommodation for any user on a quiz-by-quiz basis. When you overwrite an accommodation and then click Save, a warning describing the impact of overwriting an accommodation appears.
Further accommodation options and enhancements are planned for this year.
2) Assignments - Save progress and visual enhancements
This feature builds on the Assignments – The new assignment creation experience | Updated feature that was released in the January 2021/20.21.1 release.
- Now, the Save button in the new assignment creation experience enables an instructor to save their progress while creating or editing an assignment. Previously, Save and Close was the only option.
- The scrollbars on the main and right-hand panels now appear thinner and less noticeable, providing more vertical space when creating or editing an assignment.
- The name of the assignment appears in the immersive navbar along the top of the page.
3) Quick Eval - Homepage widget
Quick Eval can now be added to organization and course homepages as a widget to allow instructors to view and access any submissions awaiting evaluation. The Quick Eval widget displays a list of up to six activities with submissions to evaluate. The activities are sorted by due date, with the earliest date first. The icon indicator in the widget shows the type of activity (assignment, discussion, or quiz), and the number of unevaluated submissions for each activity. The due date and course information are also visible below the title of each activity. Course information is only shown if the widget is accessed from the organization homepage.
Activities dismissed in the Quick Eval tool are not displayed by the Quick Eval widget.
NOTE: Are you interested in Customizing your Course Homepage with widgets? You can find information explaining how in this blog post.
4) Rubrics - Warning dialog for partial evaluations
Previously, if an instructor attempted to publish a partially completed rubric evaluation, the partial evaluation dialog appeared. If the instructor tapped Enter on their keyboard, the partial evaluation was published.
Now, the default button behavior has changed so that tapping Enter on the page returns the user to the rubric to complete the evaluation. This change adds a verification layer to reconsider their action and ensure that instructors are not mistakenly publishing incomplete evaluations.
If you are interested in getting more information about these and all the February Continuous Delivery updates, refer to the Brightspace Platform February 2021/20.21.2 Release Notes.
Additionally, refer to the Brightspace Release Notes for Continuous Delivery Releases, for details about current, past, and to preview upcoming continuous delivery updates.
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View current, past, and preview upcoming Continuous Delivery release notes
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Note: Are you doing something innovative in Brightspace or perhaps you've discovered a handy tip? Share how you are using Brightspace in your teaching and learning in The Orange Room.