June 2023 eClass Upgrade Highlights (for Instructors)
Last modified on 07 July 2023 11:19 AM
This article outlines some of the major changes instructors should be aware of in the eClass upgrade implemented on June 24th, 2023.
Overall, the biggest change is the redesigned look with most of the functionality relating to course construction and the basic use of activities remaining the same. Our underlying LMS provider, Moodle, has undertaken a full design overhaul to make the site more modern and visually appealing. The following video provides a short introduction to the new look of the site:
Re-positioned course editing toggle: To allow instructors to more easily switch to content editing mode within courses, the Turn editing on button has been replaced with an Edit mode toggle in the right hand corner of the top nav bar. This allows instructors to enter edit mode from any position on the course page.
New text resource and blocks: When adding freeform content, images, or html into course pages or blocks, instructors can now select the Text and media area resource or the Text block. These 2 content constructions tools replace the Label resource and the HTML block:
Course content length: With the new cleaner design in courses as well as the new look of the icons, content-heavy courses can feel a bit lengthy. New by default, users now have a user-preference collapsing the content of any or all the sections in the course allowing course participants to open and focus on the section(s) that they are currently working on.
Note: as this is a user preference, instructors cannot set the collapsed/uncollapsed topics for students in a course.
Another mechanism to make courses more compact is to switch to the Collapsed Topics or the Collapsed Topics with Collapsed Labels course formats. In the new version of eClass, these 2 formats are more compact than the regular 'Topics' course format.
Indented Content: The new version of eClass has removed the option for instructors to indent course content items and activities ('Move right'). This functionality remains available in the Collapsed Topics or the Collapsed Topics with Collapsed Labels course formats.
Collapsible Blocks column: Users now have the option of increasing the amount of their screen taken up to the center content column on their dashboards and within courses. This new user preference allows the right-hand blocks column to be hidden by clicking the 'x' near the top right:
or shown by clicking the callout:
If instructors are using the blocks column and nowhere else to display important course information, it is recommended to add reminders via announcements or in text areas on the main course page for students to check the blocks menu.
Content changes alert: When adding or editing content or activities to a course, instructors can now click a checkbox to notify students of the change. The notifications simply show that there has been a change, not what has changed. Notifications are not sent to students who cannot access the item (ie. if it is hidden) and are not sent for functional changes within activities (ie. if a quiz is graded.)