June & July Brightspace Updates
Over the last two months, there have been several important updates to Brightspace. Here is a summary of recent changes.
Assignments – Availability dates are now on by default
Recent improvements to the Assignments tool’s availability dates allow Instructors to have greater control over the access and visibility of their assignments before or after the start and end dates.
Figure: The before and after of the Availability Dates & Conditions menu
Now Instructors have the ability to better control the visibility of Assignments before or after the Start and End Dates. When adding a Start Date, you have the ability to set visibility and access based on the options below.
Figure: Assignment availability options before the Start Date
Figure: Assignment availability options after the End Date
Assignments & Discussions – Consistent settings and interface of availability dates across Brightspace
To improve consistency in activity tools, this feature updates settings and the format of availability dates and states across Brightspace for both instructors and students. With this release, the Assignments and Discussions lists display availability dates and states closely aligned with other activity tools to make a unified content experience. Availability dates are displayed below the titles of assignments/discussions and the hover tooltip (what shows up when you hover your mouse over the date) includes the information about start and end dates with settings to explain how the assignment appears to learners before and after these dates. The corresponding update for Quizzes is planned for a future release.
Figure: The format of availability dates and states in the Assignments tool before this update.
Figure: The format of availability dates and states in the Assignments tool after this update.
Figure: The previous format of the availability dates in a discussion topic. The availability information appears beneath the topic title.
Figure: The updated format of the availability dates in a discussion topic. Availability details now appear in a hover tooltip.
Quizzes – The New Quiz Creation/Edit Experience is now universally enabled
In this release, the New Quiz Creation Experience reaches the end of the adoption phase of feature development and becomes the only editing experience for all users. The New Quiz Creation Experience is now set to on as the default with no option to opt out. For more information on the new quiz experience, check out our guides and a brief video here.
Quizzes – Improved workflows for large quizzes
This feature updates instructors’ workflows for large quizzes in two ways. Instructors can now use the “Load More” button on the initial page load if a quiz has more than 200 questions, sections, and/or question pools. If the Load More button is shown, list operations such as moving to the bottom or adding new questions continue functioning as expected. However, to see their changes, instructors must click the Load More button to reveal the updated list. Previously, quiz questions, sections, and question pools were rendered slowly. Creating and editing quizzes with many items could take significant time.
Figure: The Load More button.
Also, instructors can now select multiple items and use drag and drop to rearrange the questions as needed.
Figure: Multiple items selected for movement using drag and drop.
Quizzes – Redesigned quiz timing options to simplify workflows
The July Brightspace release updates the quiz creation and quiz taking experiences to simplify existing workflows for instructors and learners by adding useful new quiz timing options features.
The following advanced Quiz Timing options are now available for instructors:
- Updated quiz timing settings allow instructors to choose whether they want to set a time limit and enter the length of time for the quiz.
- Quiz auto-submission now automatically hands in quizzes on enforced time limit quizzes at the end of the set time. This improves quiz integrity and prevents cases where students may forget to submit a quiz and then be locked out.
Figure: Select the option to Automatically submit the quiz attempt in Timer Settings.
- Removal of options that were deemed “not beneficial,” such as Grace Period and Allow students to continue working but automatically score zero to further streamline the process of quiz creation. With this update, the older settings are automatically updated to the following new behavior:
- A quiz that previously had a grace period now uses the time limit set on the quiz.
- A quiz that previously scored a quiz at 0 when the time limit was exceeded now sets the quiz to submit the learner’s quiz attempt automatically.
- The Timing & Display section displays comprehensive summary information in either collapsed or expanded view, helping instructors to find errors and to understand which settings they could change.
Figure: The collapsed view of a quiz with an enforced time limit in the Timing & Display section shows instructors a summary of their settings.
The following improved Quiz Timing options are now available for students:
- Option to show/hide the timer to reduce anxiety during quiz taking and display warnings at certain times to support awareness of time left. The following warnings are available: 1 minute remaining on the quiz, 5 minutes remaining (only available on quizzes with 10 minutes or longer quiz time limit), and half of the elapsed time (only available on quizzes with a 20 minutes or longer quiz time limit).
Note: Once a learner sets their preference, the setting preserves across all quizzes.
Figure: Click the Hide Timer button beside the quiz timer to hide the timer from the view.
Figure: The Timer Warning dialog indicates how much longer a learner has in a quiz.
- Simplified the Quiz Results page that appears when a learner completes a quiz attempt or returns later to view their quiz results (previously known as Submission View).
Figure: The Quiz Results page shows learners the status of their quiz and their score.
- Option to review quiz instructions and details without leaving the quiz.
Figure: Click the Quiz Information option on the quiz page to view instructions and other information. This does not leave the quiz.