D2L

Getting Help

You can find D2L help guides and tutorials at http://help.d2l.arizona.edu. If you need additional help setting up your D2L course site, email the Research and Instructional Computing staff at cohic@email.arizona.edu to request an appointment. If you need assistance with your D2L account or with your request for site creation, email the D2L staff at d2l@email.arizona.edu

Requesting Your D2L Course Page

To request a D2L site, direct your favorite web browser to http://help.d2l.arizona.edu. Click the "Information for Instructors" link; then click on the "Request Course Site" button. It typically takes 3-5 business days for your site to be created (longer during peak request time at the beginning of the semester). You will be notified when your site has been created.

You can log in to your course site at http://d2l.arizona.edu. Log in using your NetID; then select the course you'd like to view or edit.

Some of the features of D2L that you might find valuable include:

  • Content: You can use the content module to upload course content (syllabi, assignment sheets, course readings, etc.) for your students to view or to post links and create your own documents. You can also create modules and a full class calendar with due dates, reminders, etc.
  • Gradebook: The D2L gradebook is a convenient place for you to record and calculate student grades. Students that click on the “Grades” link will be able to see their individual grades for the course, including a grade to date if you choose to provide one.
  • Dropbox: D2L provides a forum for students to turn in homework electronically. You can return and even grade these assignments online.
  • Discussion: You can create and maintain a threaded discussion forum for students to converse with one another and exchange files.
  • Chat: You can create and moderate an online forum for students to chat in real time.
  • Quizzes: D2L allows you to create and administer quizzes online. If you create multiplechoice or short answer quizzes, D2L will even grade them for you!
  • Surveys: You can create and administer ungraded surveys online.

Navigation Bar

Editing Your D2L Course Page

To add or remove options, simply click on ‘Navigation & Themes’ under Edit Course. This will bring up the “Navbars” screen. This screen contains a list of pre-created themes. To edit the original theme, click the arrow next to ‘Default Course Home Navbar’ and choose Copy. This will make a duplicate theme labeled ‘Copy’ that can be edited. Click on it.

Here you can change the name of the theme and see a representation of the navigation bar for your D2L site.

The navigation bar is broken into four parts (top left, bottom right, etc). You can change the links that are visible in each area. Add pre-created D2L links by clicking on ‘Add Links’ or create non-D2L links by clicking on ‘Create Custom Link’. Delete links by hovering over them and clicking the X that appears. Reorder links by simply clicking and dragging them in the window. Be sure to save your changes when you’re done!

News

In order to post messages to your whole class (deadlines, reminders, etc.), go to “Course Home” and select the arrow next to News to add a ‘New News Item’. A window will open where you can type the headline (Homework 9/21, for example), and the content of the news item. Setting a start and end date will determine when the items will appear on the course home page.

      

Content

Uploading Course Materials to Your D2L Site

D2L is a great tool for posting information so that your students can access it at any time during the semester. You can place assignment sheets, syllabi, and announcements on your site and never have to worry about students losing them. For starters, let’s get your syllabus up and running.

Your D2L site is already available at http://d2l.arizona.edu . In order to make changes to the site, you’ll need to point your favorite browser to that link and log in using your UA NetID. Once you’ve logged in and selected your course, you should see a screen that looks very much like this:

You can change the list of options that appear in the upper left-hand corner (see pg. 2), but for now, let’s focus on course content. Click on the “Content” link highlighted above. This will bring up the content management page.

D2L breaks your content into “Modules” (which are basically organizable categories). Before you can upload your syllabus, files, and other content, you will need to create a parent category (Module). Click the “Add a module” icon and type in a name.

Now you can add course materials to your Module. Simply click on ‘New’ or ‘Add Activities’. In newer browsers you can also click and drag materials into your module. There is a region specifically labeled ‘Drag and drop files here to create and update topics’. Once you’ve added a quiz, link, pdf, etc, it will appear in the module. By clicking on the triple horizontal bar icon next to an item, you can move it up and down in order. You can also set a date range to restrict when students can view each module.

Finally the ‘Published’ option states that a Module is visible by students. To stop students from seeing a module, but not deleting it, switch Published to ‘Draft’.

Classlist

Here you will find your classlist. Please note that the classlist in D2L may not be the most up-to-date classlist; use UAccess Instructor for the most accurate list. If you need to print this list or e-mail these students, you can select their names and click on the icons (inside the red circle). Email is now sent to their D2L email and their U of A email. To change the role of a user in your list, click on them and choose Enrollment. If you want to add a TA or another instructor to your class, choose Add Participants.

Gradebook

You also have the ability to create and manage an online gradebook for your students. The process is time-consuming, but it will save you some troubles later on. The biggest advantage of this module is that your students can view their own grades at any point during the semester by logging in to D2L.

First, select “Grades” from the D2L navigation bar. The first time you open your gradebook for each course, go to the ‘Settings’ and alter some of your options. You can always go back and change these settings again later by going back to Settings (on the top-right).

Some things to note under ‘Calculation Options’ in Settings:

  • Points versus Weighted: This should be based on what you have on your syllabus. If you have assignments that are broken out based on percentage (e.g. Essay 1 is 20% of the overall grade, test 2 is 50%, etc.), then choose percentage. If you use points (e.g. Essay 1 is 200 points of the overall grade, test 2 is 500 points, etc.), select the points.

  • Calculated versus Adjusted Final Grade: Calculated final grade uses the mathematically calculated grade, whereas adjusted allows you as the instructor to override and make changes to the grade, if you have deductions for attendance for instance. Adjusted shows the calculated and adjusted grades.
  • Drop Ungraded Versus Treat as Zero: Treating ungraded items as zero means that all items that students have yet to submit will receive a zero. This means that if you are only through unit one of the course, students’ grades will have zeros for all the remaining units of the course. This often results in uncharacteristically low grades. Dropping ungraded items means that anything yet to be submitted will not be factored into the students grade, so students will see their grade out of the percentage that’s been completed. Most instructors drop ungraded items, but it is your choice. If you would like for students to see their grades throughout the semester, check the box next to “Automatically keep final grade updated.”

After going through Settings, you will be brought to the ‘Manage Grades’ screen:

From this screen you can create Categories such as “Homeworks” or “Exams” that are significant to your students’ final grades, or add individual graded Items. Items can be placed inside Categories or contribute to students’ final grades on their own (as will often be the case with final exams or major essays).

In other words, you only need to use a “Category” for graded items that have multiple parts, such as journals or a series of essays of sub-assignments that combined are worth 20% of the final grade. The Category feature allows you to evenly spread the percentage for each item separately or you can weight them as you wish. Use “New => Item” for assignments that only have one part contributing to the final grade. For example, one essay grade that is 35% of the final grade.

Make sure that the percentages for all your categories add up to 100% if you are using the “Weighted” option of displaying your grades.

To view students’ grades, click on the “Enter Grades” tab in the upper left-hand corner of the Grades screen. To enter grades for individual Items, click on the ‘Switch to Spreadsheet View’ in the upper right. It will turn the scores into text fields for easy entry.

Dropbox

The dropbox feature allows you to collect, comment on, and grade student work online. Clicking on the Dropbox link will take you to the dropbox management page:

From this screen you can create folders for students to submit their work as attachments by clicking on the “New Folder” icon shown above. On the following screen (below), you can set restrictions on when students can submit work and assign homework folders to an item in your Gradebook.

Associate the dropbox folder with a graded item by clicking on the ‘Grade Item’ drop box and selecting an already created Gradebook Item. Click on ‘OriginalityCheck’ if you want submitted files to be checked for plagiarism using TurnItIn.com. If you wish to leave intext comments, you will need to edit the file outside of D2L, and then upload it on this page.

Quizzes

To create D2L quizzes, click on the “Quizzes” section in the D2l toolbar. Then click on “New Quiz”. In the “Properties” section, type in the Quiz name and click on “Add/Edit Questions”.

You will be then directed to the quiz content page, where you will be able to add different types of questions: “True or False”, “Multiple Choice”, “Fill in the Blanks”, etc. Click on the type of questions you want to add to your quiz.

You will be directed to a page where you can type the amount of points the question will have, its title, content, etc. By clicking “Save” or “Save and New”, you can continue creating other questions for your quiz.

You can go back and edit, preview and grade your quiz in the “Manage Quizzes” section, or to create new quizzes. You can reorder your quizzes by clicking on the “More Actions”   tab and selecting “Reorder”.

In the “Edit” section of a quiz, you can click on the “Restrictions” tab to choose the status of the quiz (inactive or active), create the end/start date for the quizzes, time the quiz, or allow late submissions.

 

In the “Assessment” section, you can connect your quiz to a grade category in the gradebook, add quiz rubrics and chose the amount of attempts you want your students to have on the quizzes (unlimited - 10 attempts). You can create a whole new grade item for your gradebook and connect it to your quiz by clicking on “add grade item”. You can also decide on the “Overall Grade Calculation” – whether you wanted it to be based on the highest or lowest attempt, first or last attempt, or average of attempts.

Discussion Board

In order to create a new discussion, click on the “Discussions” tab in D2l. In the “Discussions List” section, click on the blue button at the top left “New” and chose the “New Forum” option.

You will be redirected to a page where you can enter the title of the forum and its description in the “Properties” section. By clicking on the “Availability” option, you can have the forum visible always, or only for a specific date range. By clicking on the “Locking Options”, you can chose to lock or unlock a forum for a specific date range.

Once you have created the Forum, you can edit it or add a discussion topic by clicking on the drop-down arrow next to your forum title in the “Discussion List” section. You can also create new Forums by clicking on the blue “New” button. By clicking on the “More Actions” button, you can reorder your forums.

In order to create a discussion topic, click on the “Add Topic” option. You will be directed to a “Properties” page will you will be able to enter the title, description, as well as change “Availability” and the “Locking Option” settings.

In the “Assessment” section, you can chose the grade item you want to associate the topic with, as well as the points you want to assign to a post. You can also allow assessment of individual posts.

Once students have made their first postings, you can filter them by “Unread” and “Unapproved” in the “Discussion List” section.

The Research and Instructional Computing staff will be offering “Introduction to D2L” workshops. The Workshop Schedule can be found here.

You can also contact us at cohic@email.arizona.edu if you would like to schedule an appointment for help with these or other features.

February, 2014