Changes to course requests, Learn.UQ upgrade and ePortfolio

4 Jul 2017
eLearning Update, eLearning Systems and Support
Tuesday 04 July 2017

Learn.UQ (Blackboard) upgrade: 10-11 July

The Blackboard upgrade date is approaching. Blackboard will be unavailable for 48-hours over Monday 10 July and Tuesday 11 July. This upgrade will provide critical updates to back-end functionality and security for the system. Students have been notified by email and advised to download materials required during the outage period. Notices have been available on my.UQ and Blackboard for some time. For courses with teaching activity occurring over the vacation period, it may be useful to add a notification to the Blackboard course site prior to the outage.

Learn.UQ (Blackboard) storage

Following the Blackboard upgrade, system administrators will be addressing storage usage on Blackboard. One of the first tasks will be to move 2013 courses from the production service onto UQ Course Archives. Semester 1 2013 courses will be transferred in the weeks immediately following the upgrade, and Semester 2 2013 courses will be transferred shortly afterwards. For further information refer to the Course Archive webpage.

ePortfolio Stakeholders Demonstration  

10:00am - 11:00am 13 July, St Lucia
Following a successful Semester 1 deployment of the new UQ ePortfolio system, the ePortfolio project team will be hosting a short presentation for interested stakeholders. This presentation will highlight the functionality of the UQ ePortfolio system and how the tool can be used to improve teaching and learning, including reference to case study examples from the recent deployment. This is an excellent opportunity for high level engagement with the ePortfolio system. 

Refer to the ePortfolio project page for more information on the project.

Change to course requests 

In response to feedback from coordinators, there will be a change in the way Grade Centre is created for Semester 2 courses. Columns from the previous semester will no longer be copied. This approach will solve the issue of undeletable orphaned columns. While Tests and questions will be copied forward to the new courses, coordinators will need to recreate the required link and update the settings. Refer to the Deploy a test guide for step-by-step instructions. 

Staff can still request that Grade Centre columns be copied by adding this information to the Other Requirements field in the Course Request form.

Guidelines for online course design

UQ guidelines for online course design are being developed in consultation with coordinators, students, faculty T&L committees and ITaLI. There are currently seven key course design tips with a focus on making course sites consistent. The Top 7 Course Design Tips is available for staff interested in a quick overview.

Watch the Blackboard Unity Project video case study to see how UQ Business School is making their course sites consistent.

iThenticate - Text matching for research papers

The iThenticate text matching system for researchers is now available to all UQ staff. While iThenticate uses the same underlying technology and database as Turnitin, the functionality, user experience and reports are designed to meet the needs of researchers. iThenticate allows you to quickly upload, check and examine documents using a web-based interface. Researchers can share documents and collaborate in groups. iThenticate includes in-depth analytics to provide visibility of content submissions and levels of originality over time.

Refer to the Getting started with iThenticate guide for step-by-step instructions. 

Direct upload grades upload to SI-net project

A project has been initiated by the eLearning team and ITS to help simplify the upload of grades to SI-net. Development of new Grade Centre functionality to allow upload of grades at the push of a button is being investigated. It is proposed that this new functionality be piloted at the end of Semester 2 2017.

eLearning Solutions Service - ELSS

The eLearning Solutions Service offers one-on-one consultations on the integration of eLearning into courses. At the start of each semester, staff can nominate to use this service to help implement a centrally supported eLearning tool. Support will be provided for the duration of the semester. To make a nomination please follow the steps on the eLearning Solutions Service website.

As part of the eLearning Solutions Service, you can:

  • receive one-on-one consultations tailoring eLearning solutions for your course;
  • receive ideas on how to deliver your course more effectively with technology;
  • save time, improve student engagement and give better feedback to your students;

Email with "ELSS - nomination" in the subject line. An eLearning advisor will make contact with you to arrange an initial consultation. All advisers have teaching qualifications. 

ITaLI TeachAssist

TeachAssist is provided by ITaLI for the UQ community to offer support for their teaching and learning. If you are considering changing your curriculum, its delivery or assessment, evaluating your teaching or perhaps even educational research then get in contact through the ITaLI TeachAssist website. Assistance is available on a range of pedagogical, teaching professional development, evaluations, learning analytics and online learning development activities.

Custom workshops for teaching staff, tutors and professional staff

Custom workshops on centrally supported eLearning tools are available on request for faculties, schools and/or courses. Laptops are provided for the sessions and course coordinators only need to book a meeting room. Contact with details of the preferred date, time, room booking and approximate numbers.

Feature Videos

Engage students with weekly quizzes

In the video below Dr Simone Smala explains how she implemented online weekly quizzes in her course to help engage students with their set readings and prepare for tutorials. Watch video (3:39)

Setting up project groups

The Groups tool can be used to facilitate the organisation of students into project / assessment groups.  Watch video (6:09)

View your Grade centre by tutorial group

Setting up Smart Views of your Si-net tutorial or SI-net practical groups allow you to easily filter your Grade Centre to speed up the entry of marks or checking of student submissions. Watch video (3:16)

Useful Links

eLearning Custom Workshops

Custom workshops on centrally supported eLearning tools are available on request for faculties / schools / courses.

To organise a workshop for your teaching staff, tutors or professional staff email

eLearning Solutions Service

Personal support is available for implementing centrally supported eLearning tools.

To access the service email with "ELSS - Nomination" in the subject line.

A-Z Guides eLearning Tools

A list of all centrally supported eLearning tools with associated guides are available to view and download.

Access the list of A-Z guides by clicking on this link: eLearning A-Z Guides

Flipped Classroom

If you are considering implementing the flipped classroom model at UQ, visit the Flipped Classroom website.

Video for Teaching and Learning

Helpful video production resources and advice are available on the Video Production tool webpage.