WebLearn Upgraded to Version 11-ox11

WebLearn was upgraded on 19th June 2018 to version 11-ox11. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by the disruption.

The main focus for this release was ‘behind-the-scenes’ improvements required as part of the move to Canvas, however, there are some noteworthy improvements.

Bootstrap Library

The Bootstrap Library which is (apparently) the most popular HTML, CSS and JavaScript library in the world, is now available for use in WebLearn. (There was a bug that was preventing it from working correctly.)

Bootstrap can be used on any HTML page in WebLearn including Resources, Lessons and Announcements.

There is a dedicated blog post entitled ‘Liven up your WebLearn pages’ which gives some examples and explains exactly to to add Bootstrap elements to your pages.

This sort of thing is easy to do:

Others

  • When a new version of a file is uploaded in Lessons the filename is now corrected generated as filename-1.pdf instead of filename.pdf-1.
  • Surveys: the preview of a template is now shown in a new tab – this is on the  ‘Start a New Survey Step 1’ page.
  • CSV import into Calendar should now pick up the event type – if you are going to use this facility then please read this important note about importing event types first.
  • All JavaScript / CSS files should now be ‘versioned’ this means that there should no longer be errors stemming from cached files after a WebLearn upgrade.
  • Email templates in the Surveys tool are now verified before allowing them to be saved – this should prevent garbled email notifications being sent.
  • The Resources tool now allows selected files / folders to be excluded from a ZIP file export.
  • In the Assignments tool, an alert is now shown if the ‘Visible Date’ is set to be after ‘Open Date’
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Liven up your WebLearn pages!

It is a little known fact that WebLearn now contains Twitter’s Bootstrap library. Bootstrap is world’s most popular front-end component library and can be used to make amazing-looking and fully responsive dynamic web pages.

Bootstrap allows you to easily add the following components to Lessons pages or HTML files in Resources

Plus a whole host of other techniques to make your pages more interesting. The w3schools.com Bootstrap site is a great place to start but there are a number of other places such as Tutorial Republic Bootstrap Examples, TutorialsPoint Bootstrap Tutorial and Bootsnipp.

How To …

To add Bootstrap page components all you need to do is open the WYSIWYG HTML editor, click on the “Source” button and then paste the HTML code snippets into the editor window.

The switch back to the WYSIWYG view

And hit ‘Save’!

 

 

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WebLearn unavailable on Tuesday 19/Jun/2018 7-9am

We plan to upgrade WebLearn to version 11-ox11 on Tuesday 19/Jun/2018  7-9am. This upgrade will introduce a number of new features connected to the move to Canvas plus a handful of bug fixes.

There will be no service during this period.

We apologise for any inconvenience that this essential work may cause.

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WebLearn and Turnitin Courses and WebLearn User Group: Trinity term 2018

IT Services offers a variety of taught courses to support the use of WebLearn and the plagiarism awareness software Turnitin. Course books for the formal courses (3-hour sessions) can be downloaded for self study. Places are limited and bookings are required. All courses are free of charge.

Click on the links provided for further information and to book a place.

WebLearn 3-hour courses:

Byte-sized lunch time sessions:

These focus on particular tools with plenty of time for questions and discussion

Plagiarism awareness courses (Turnitin):

User Group meetings:

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WebLearn version 11-ox10 released 3 April 2018

(Compiled by Nick Wilson)
WebLearn was upgraded to version 11-ox10 this week (w/c 2nd April 2018). A number of bug fixes and improvements were implemented, described below.

Resources / Lessons / etc

The ‘Embed Replay Recording’ button has been added to the HTML WYSIWYG Editor. This appears in Lessons, Resources, Assignments and most other tools.

Copyright status

Two additional copyright statuses have been included in the Resources tool (‘Crown copyright’ and ‘EU copyright’)

Assignments

The Assignments tool now displays the correct maximum file size for Turnitin attachments (40MB):

The correct status of an open anonymous assignment is now shown:

Contact Us Tool

The text in the ‘Problem with access or content’ section in the Contact Us tool has been updated.

Others

  1. A security vulnerability has been patched in which password reset tokens are not bound to users.
  2. Various UI improvements have been made, in particular, improving the size of modal popups in the Lessons tool, and the ability to use Bootstrap in HTML pages.
  3. Sign-up events now show their correct times in Office 365.
  4. When adding a discussion topic to a Lessons page, the description of that page from the Item Properties is automatically displayed.

If you have any questions, please contact weblearn@it.ox.ac.uk

 

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Improvements in WebLearn v11-ox9 released on 23 Jan 2018

A new version of WebLearn (version 11-ox9) was released on Tuesday 23 January 2018. There have been a number of improvements especially in the area of anonymous essay submissions.

Here is a breakdown of the enhancements.

Anonymous Submissions / Assignments

  • A warning is now issued if a file has been uploaded into the Assignment tool but the user has neglected to click ‘Submit’
  • The Turnitin Originality Report no longer loses anonymity once the due date has passed
  • Submission sites now have their own section in the Sites Drawer

Bulk Creation of Internal Subgroups

This release sees big improvements in the area of bulk creation of sub-groups (this is in Site Info > Manage Subgroups > Bulk Creation). It is possible to define multiple sets of groups and users in a file and have them created all at once. This facility should be particularly useful for Anonymous Submissions.

Visit Site Info and opt to Manage Subgroups.

then

On the next screen you are given the opportunity to upload a CSV file which can be generated by a spreadsheet application such as Excel. The contents of the CSV file can also be pasted into an on-screen text area.

Contact Us Tool

  • The link to the WebLearn Guidance site has been corrected
  • If a user tries to visit a site to which they don’t have access, the correct contact details are now shown, thus making it easy to ask to be added as a site member

Others

  • In the Lessons tool, on a public site, hyperlinks inserted via the ‘Add Content’ option now work correctly for non-logged in users
  • There should no longer be any emails with a return address of postmaster@weblearn.ox.ac.uk
  • The title of the main panel of the Overview page has been changed from (the meaningless) Site Information Display to the more sensible Welcome!
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Pilot of new ‘Add Participants’ functionality

We have been working hard to deliver a much-requested feature when adding participants to a site – dynamic lookup. This functionality has undergone a degree of user acceptance testing but we are very keen to pilot the facility more widely and, as such, are asking for volunteers.

If you would like to be an early adopter of this streamlined functionality then please get in touch by sending an email to weblearn at ox.ac.uk – we can enable the facility on one or more or your sites – please let us know any relevant URL(s).

The new pages cover all existing functionality but have an improved workflow with less clicks than the incumbent.

The user interface has been simpilified with better on-screen feedback.

 

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Announcing OxTALENT 2108

From the OxTALENT organising committee:

Have you been impressed by a member of staff or a student who has used technology in an exciting way? Have you created a great app, or designed an eye-catching conference poster or data visualisation?

The University’s annual OxTALENT competition has launched to celebrate and reward the innovative use of digital technologies to enhance teaching, learning, research, and outreach. The awards will be presented at a red carpet evening attended by Professor Martin Williams, Pro-VC (Education). The competition is open to all students and staff, and awards can be given either to individuals or to groups. You can submit an entry yourself or nominate a colleague who has impressed you with their use of technology. For more information, including a list of competition categories and guidelines on how to enter, please visit the Digital Education at Oxford website: https://www.digitaleducation.ox.ac.uk/oxtalent

If you spot any individual or team whom you think we should consider for an award, let us know at competitions@it.ox.ac.uk

Keep up to date on Twitter by following the hashtag #oxtalent2018.

OxTALENT closing date: Friday 27th April.

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WebLearn Improvements – Version 11-ox8.1, released w/c 4 December 2017

Ooops note / disclaimer! I just noticed that I had inadvertently forgotten to publish this blog post. Many apologies for the delay.

WebLearn was upgraded during the week of 4 December 2017 to version 11-ox8.1. There was no downtime associated with this release.

  • System emails now originate from a “black hole” address: weblearn-noreply@weblearn.ox.ac.uk
  • In the Lessons tool, the embedded “Forums widget” now correctly displays the name of the person who initiated the conversation (rather than the last person to read a post)
  • In the Lessons tool, the embedded ‘Calendar Widget’ now correctly displays the event icons
  • In the Lessons tool, the “Calendar widget” now changes to the correct colour when the colour scheme is modified
  • The “Recorded Lectures” dashboard is now available to all users in their home site (known as ‘My Home’), this dashboard is also available in the “Avatar Menu” (top right)

  • Joinable sites that are only available to Oxford SSO accounts now have a better description in the Site Info tool
  • External users now have access to a collated list of announcements on their home site
  • On new sites, the main panel on the ‘Overview’ page now has a more appropriate heading of ‘Welcome’
  • In the ‘Site Members’ (Roster) tool, site participants with the ‘maintain’ and ‘contribute’ roles now have permission to view site visits (prior to this fix, the permission to do this had to be set manually on each site)
  • The error message that one sees when attempting to complete a ‘single-attempt’ survey has been improved
  • “Access” (read-only) view of resources now uses Font Awesome icons

Anonymous Submission (AS) Sites / Assignment Tool

  • Students can now resubmit in an Anonymous Submission (AS) site
  • Participants with the “marker role” now have their own personal Drop Box (one use of this new functionality is for markers to exchange essays and marks with departmental administrators) – students will not see the drop box in the left-had side page menu
  • Participants with the ‘maintain’ and ‘contribute’ roles can now see and edit each other’s draft assignments
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“The Only Way Is Up” – the increasing use of WebLearn over the last few years

I was just preparing the monthly report for the WebLearn service and thought it may be interesting to look at the long term trend in WebLearn usage. WebLearn has been using Google Analytics since January 2015 so I plotted a graph showing how the “Number of Sessions per Month” has increased over the last 3 years – as you can see it’s a fairly steady increase.

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