Updates to D2L Brightspace
This page showcases the latest features and improvements in D2L Brightspace. For information about course availability and D2L access information, please see our D2L Information for Faculty & Staff page.
What is New in D2L for Fall 2023?
- November 2023 Updates -
Announcements – Copy announcements to other courses
With the November release, you will be able to copy announcements to other courses.
To access this feature:
- Navigate to the announcement you want to copy.
- Click the dropdown arrow next to the announcement name and select Copy to Other Courses.
- A window will open showing a searchable list of potential destination courses. Place a check next to the name of each desired destination course (max of 10 at once) and click the Next button.
Things to Note:
- The copied announcement will be in a draft state in the destination course and must be published.
- What copies?
- Attachments should copy
- Dates may need adjustment
- start date seems to default to the current date regardless of the start date in the origin announcement
- end date - a future end date seems to copy; a past end date is ignored
- Release conditions do not copy
- The origin course will be in the list of destination courses. If selected, it creates a copy within the origin course but follows the same pattern as copies in other courses in terms of the draft state and what will or will not copy. If copying an announcement within a course, the Copy option may be more efficient because it opens an editing window to adjust dates and status during the copy process.
Assignments and Discussions – Review key assessment information when using Publish All
With the November release, you may notice the addition of a Publish All button above the submissions table for Assignments that is similar to the Publish All Feedback option which already exists on the Assess Topics page for Discussions.
For both Assignments and Discussions, the Publish All dialog is improved and standardized to show key information about learner evaluations. Dialog messaging notes complete and incomplete learner evaluations and other key information such as how many learners have feedback and how many learners or groups are assigned to an activity. Previously, the Publish All dialog did not display any information about learner evaluations or other key information.
To Access the Publish All button, you must be on the evaluation page:
- For Assignments: Click the dropdown next to the assignment name and click View Submissions.
- For Discussions: Click the dropdown next to the topic name and click Assess Topic.
Notes about Publish All in Assignments:
- There must be a submission in a draft state for the Publish All button to be active.
- After clicking Publish All, you may need to refresh the page to see the evaluation status updated.
Previously Announced Updates
- October 2023 Updates -
Small Improvement to HTML Editor - text direction attribute
With the October release, you will be able to adjust the text direction attribute per page instead of only per text selection.
To locate this option:
- Within the Brightspace Editor, click the dropdown next to the plus sign (Other Insert Options) on the tool bar.
- Select Attributes.
- Select the new Page Attributes tab and scroll down to Text Direction.
- Use the drop down to toggle between Default, Left to Right, and Right to Left.
Banner added to announce the upcoming End of Life for the Chat Tool
With the October release, you will see a banner on existing D2L Chats letting you know that D2L will decommission the Chat tool as part of the January 2024 release which will occur at the end of January. If you copy over course material that contains Chats in Content, the content topics will remain, but the chats will no longer be available. You will need to reconfigure courses with chat-based content topics.
- upcoming -
New Discussion Experience Becomes Default with the December Release
The New Discussion Experience has been available since May of this year with an opt-out option. With the monthly release at the end of December, it will become the default interface and there will no longer be an option to opt out. For more information about the New Discussion Experience, please visit the KSU Knowledge Base and search keywords: navigate new discussions.
- September 2023 Updates -
Tips for Using Synchronous Quizzes
As announced in July, D2L now offers a Synchronous Quiz option where instructors may configure a quiz to start and end at the same time for all participants (except those for whom special access has been set). The default Quiz type is still asynchronous, which means that a student may begin the quiz any time within the availability dates/times that have been set (start/end). If you wish to use the new synchronous quiz type, the quiz type may be changed using the Timer Settings option in the Timing & Display menu of the Quiz authoring interface. A Knowledge Base article on this topic is available here or by visiting the KSU Knowledge Base and searching keyword: quiz timing.
Here are some ideas to note and consider when utilizing a synchronous quiz with the auto-submit option selected:
- Once the start time of the quiz arrives, the timer will begin to count down for every student whether the student has accessed the quiz or not.
- If a student enters the quiz after the start time, the student will have the time remaining in the quiz available, not the full time allowance (as is the case with asynchronous).
Example: Synchronous quiz (set to auto-submit) begins on October 1 at 10:00 AM and students have 30 minutes to complete the quiz which will be automatically submitted at 10:30 AM. A student who starts the quiz at 10:10 will have the remaining 20 minutes to work.
- A student who does not enter the quiz between the start time and the automatically configured end time (based on time allowed) will not be able to attempt the quiz unless multiple attempts are configured or you provide special access for that student.
Communication to Students
- There are currently no special icons to indicate to a student when a quiz is configured
to be synchronous so it is recommended that you convey this information clearly to
students using means such as:
- add it to the quiz title/description
- add a "synchronous" category to organize the quizzes page
- use a course announcement or the syllabus to explain how a synchronous quiz is different and to indicate which quizzes will be synchronous
- END DATE - Be mindful of the automatically configured end date/time when using auto-submit.
To avoid any confusion, do not add an end date in the Availability Dates & Conditions
menu unless it matches the calculated end time.
Example: The calculated end time for the exam is 10:30 AM. If you were to set an end date of 11:00 AM in the Availability Dates & Conditions menu, it would appear to the student that the quiz would be available for them to enter up to 11:00 AM when in reality their opportunity to enter the quiz would have ended just prior to 10:30 AM.
- The calculated end time will be available to students if they click the quiz name to see the quiz details.
- These recommendations apply to synchronous quiz type with auto-submit enabled. Alternatives
to the auto-submit options include:
- Flag as "exceeded time limit" and allow the learner to continue working
- Do nothing: the time limit is not enforced
- Special Access can be set for synchronous quizzes as needed.
- August 2023 Updates -
Pin Announcements (feature improvement)
D2L now allows you to pin announcements so that they will remain at the top of the list in the Announcements widget in your course.
Rubric Instructor View (interface improvements)
- Mobile App Evaluator View To reduce scrolling and offer more control over display in the mobile app, instructors can now collapse the containers for Rubrics, Grades & Feedback, Outcomes, and Competencies. Each component is open by default but can be toggled open or closed by selecting the triangle beside the name of the container.
- Pop-out Rubric Details To provide a more complete context for learner evaluation, rubric pop-outs now provide activity details including activity title, course name, and learner name. These details were not previously visible in pop-outs.
Class Progress (interface update)
When looking at Class Progress, the Absent Period information has been added to the top of the screen for Login History, Course Access, and System Access reports. Absent Period indicates the number of days since the learned last logged into Brightspace.
- Login History indicates a login to Brightspace, not the course
- Course Access indicates a login to the course
- System Access indicates each Brightspace access via browser or Pulse app
- begins at login, app launch, or return after 30 minutes of inactivity
- access ends after 30 minutes of inactivity
- July 2023 Updates -
Improvement to Quiz Timing Features
D2L is updating the quiz creation and quiz taking experiences to simplify existing workflows and add useful new quiz timing options. These quiz timing improvements are available to you now.
- Quiz Timing Improvements & Auto-submission – The changes include auto-submission, simpler quiz setup, and the removal of obsolete quiz timing options such as the grace period.
- Quiz Taking Improvements – Improvements to the Quiz taking experience including show/hide quiz timer and improvements to the Quiz results view.
- Synchronous Quizzes – The D2L Quiz Tool now supports both asynchronous and synchronous quizzes. The new addition of synchronous quizzes enables instructors to set up a quiz where the quiz timer starts on the start date for all learners rather than when the learner launches the quiz (asynchronous). The quiz timer then ends for all learners at the same time.
For detailed information, please visit the KSU Knowledge Base and search “D2L Quiz Timing.”
D2L Media Library
D2L Media Library provides a central access point for all audio and video created
within D2L and for some uploaded media. It provides basic editing capabilities such
as adding chapters or captions and selecting sections of video to hide from viewers.
Any change made to a video file in D2L Media Library will be reflected anywhere that
video file appears in D2L Brightspace. For this reason, extreme caution should be
used when editing or deleting media files using D2L Media Library.
While D2L Media Library provides convenient access for quick video recording and editing tasks, the recommended app for instructional video is Kaltura MediaSpace due to:
- superior editing and captioning capability
- capacity for adding instructional elements such as quiz or hotspot link
- ability to collaborate, organize content, and share public links
For detailed information, please visit the KSU Knowledge Base and search “D2L Media Library.”
Minimum Versions for Supported Browsers
The July update increases the minimum supported browser versions to: Chrome 112+, Edge 112+, Safari 16+, and Firefox 112+. The minimum legacy browsers remain at: Chrome 74, Edge 74, Safari 13, and Firefox 67. For an optimal experience that offers better performance, accessibility, and security, D2L recommends that all users access Brightspace with the latest version of their supported browser.
Minor Interface Improvements to Note
- Edited images now retain their original name + time stamp
- Discussion availability information is displayed below the Topic title; hovering provides more settings detail
There are some exciting changes coming to D2L tools in May of 2023. Please see information about each below:
New Quiz Experience will become the default on May 12, 2023
As part of the D2L commitment to provide consistent workflows, the D2L Quiz Tool interface has been updated to look more like the Assignments Tool interface. Instead of tabs, expandable menus are now arranged for a one page view. For detailed information, please visit the KSU Knowledge Base and search “D2L Quiz.”
Please note that beginning May 12, 2023, the new D2L Quiz Experience will become the default interface for the Quiz tool and the opt-out option will no longer be available.
New Discussions Experience becomes available with an option to opt out
In keeping with the recent goal of standardizing workflows, D2L has released the New Discussions Experience. This new interface aligns with the Assignment and Quiz Tools and will become available to you in May of 2023. You will have the option to opt out (and provide feedback directly to D2L) until the new experience becomes the default interface in a few months. An overview of the interface is available here. Information about opting out if available here.
Assignment Tool – update to availability options
The Assignments Tool availability options will soon include additional options when a start or end date is set. These options determine visibility and access. There is also a checkbox to select whether to add start and end dates to the calendar.
In addition, you may set default visibility/access settings for assignments and discussions in your course. You will find this option at Course Admin > Site Setup > Availability Date Defaults. As always, these global settings can be adjusted for individual activities