This past school year, the University of Calgary began rolling out Desire2Learn (D2L), a new learning management system that is scheduled to replace Blackboard by the end of May, 2014.
During the fall term, 40 courses from a variety of disciplines were successfully piloted in the D2L environment. In addition, the Werklund School of Education and the faculties of Science, Social Work and Veterinary Medicine participated in the second phase of the pilot this winter, using D2L for all their 2014 courses.
Now, the new system is being used more broadly as all remaining faculties, along with Continuing Education, make the switch to D2L. Here are five things you need to know to help in the transition:
1. All spring/summer 2014 courses will be in D2L
As of June 1, 2014, all credited, non-credited and Continuing Education courses will be delivered in D2L and past Blackboard courses will be archived.
Credited courses will be created automatically and will be accessible from myUofC or by visiting d2l.ucalgary.ca. Those that have a non-credited course in Blackboard and would like it migrated to D2L are encouraged to fill out the online course creation form.
2. D2L interface is optimized for use on mobile devices
D2L is a modern and robust learning management system that is designed to work on any modern web browser, and with any computer operating system. The interface is also optimized for use on mobile devices, and includes several dedicated applications that are available for iOS devices.
3. Training is available for instructors and students
Whether you want in-class instruction, or feel more comfortable learning from the comfort of your desk or home, a number of training options are available for instructors and staff.
Students are encouraged to check out the online resources available at elearn.ucalgary.ca/desire2learn/home/students. Materials include ten short video tutorials, user manuals and frequently asked questions.
4. There are two ways to access D2L
You can access D2L from your myUofC portal. Log in to myUofC, and select the Academic tab. Under the Direct access column, click on Desire2Learn. Staff will also be able to locate the D2L link under My work.
In the event that the myUofC portal is down for system maintenance, you can access D2L directly by going to d2l.ucalgary.ca.
5. Students are familiar with D2L
Alberta school districts are using D2L for the delivery of online learning and teaching, and many students attending the University of Calgary are already accustomed to the tool.
Visit elearn.ucalgary.ca/desire2learn for more information.