Release Notes

January 2019 (version 10.8.9)

Assignments - Improvements to Assignments List view | Updated

When accessing Assignments, the list view now displays updated information. Previously instructors would see information on the assignment name, Total Submissions, Unread Submissions, Flagged Submissions, and Due Date. Now instructors see information on the assignment name, the number of learners who have completed the assignment, the number of learners who have been evaluated, the number of learners who have had feedback published, and the Due Date. This allows instructors to quickly determine what assignments they need to evaluate, how far along they are with their evaluations, and if they have published the evaluations.

Learners also have an updated view of the assignments list, and are now able to see the assignment name, the Completion Status (Not Submitted, Submitted, Completed), their Score, The Evaluation Status (Not yet evaluated, Feedback: unread, Feedback: read), and the Due Date. This change to the list view allows learners to easily locate unfinished assignments, as well as access their scores and view instructor feedback on their work.


Figure: Existing Assignments list view for instructors

Figure: New Assignments list view for instructors

Figure: Existing Assignments list view for learners

Figure: New Assignments list view for learners

Groups - Create new submission types | Updated

The new On paper and Observed in person submission types available in Assignments can now be created from the Groups tool.

HTML Editor - Descriptive error message for quicklinks to unavailable activities | Updated

A specific error message now appears to users who click a quicklink to an activity that is outside the availability dates (not yet available or no longer available). The error message appears for the following unavailable activity types:

  • Announcements items 
  • Calendar events
  • Chat sessions (if the user is not part of a group chat)
  • ePortfolio (for items that not shared to the user)
  • External learning tools links
  • Templates (that are not available in the current org unit)
  • Groups (with expired self enrollment option)

This feature builds on a previous feature of 10.8.6 that added a specific error message for some course activities. With this feature, the specific error message, "Unavailable Quicklink. The <activity type> is not available" appears for many additional course activities.

Intelligent Agents - Export agent run history to CSV | New

Intelligent Agent run history, previously only visible in Brightspace Learning Environment, can now be exported to a CSV file. The export can include all agents or a specific agent. It can also include runs made during a specified date range. This feature allows instructors to better track learners that are triggering Intelligent Agents.

Rubrics - Improved rubric creation experience| Updated

To improve on the new rubric creation experience, rubric creation has been changed to a single-page workflow. Clicking New in the Rubrics tool immediately brings the user to the rubric authoring page. As well, the two previous Rubric Tool options Properties and Levels and Criteria are now condensed into a single Edit option.

Figure: The new rubric creation experience in the single page format.

Figure: The new Edit Rubric Tool option, replacing Properties and Levels and Criteria.


December 2018 (version 10.8.8)

Assignments - Change assignment and submission type | New

If no learner submissions have been made to an assignment, instructors can change the assignment type and submission type. This allows for existing assignments to be modified without the need to create a new assignment.

Assignments - Evaluate submissions by clicking learner names | New

On the Submissions page, instructors can now click on a learner's name to access the Evaluate Submission page. Previously this action allowed instructors to email learners. Emails can still be sent from the Submissions page by selecting the check box beside a learner's name, and clicking Email.

Assignments - Improved evaluation experience | Updated

The Evaluate Submission page has been updated to improve the evaluation experience for instructors with the following features:

  • To download a submission, instructors now click on the submission's file name.
  • The Markup Document button has been replaced by a Launch Turnitin link for assignments that have Turnitin enabled.
  • The Publish and Save Draft buttons now display at the bottom of the page and are not confined to the Evaluation and Feedback pane.
  • An additional link to access the Next Student now displays next to the Publish and Save Draftbuttons at the bottom of the page.

Figure: Download submissions by selecting the file name, and markup documents using the Launch Turnitin button

Figure: Publish, Save Draft, and Next Student options grouped together at the bottom of the Evaluate Submission page

Content - Create new assignment submission types | Updated

On paper and Observed in person assignment submission types can now be created directly from Content. On paper assignments are completed by learners offline and submitted directly to instructors. Observed in person assignments, such as class presentations, do not require written work to be submitted but can be evaluated using the tools available in Assignments.

Course Builder - Create new assignment submission types | Updated

Instructors can now use Course Builder to create On paper and Observed in person assignment submission types.

Discussions - Improvements to the rubrics grading experience | New

Grading with rubrics in Discussions now offers new functions and an improved workflow. The new design makes for an easier grading experience and is optimized for use on mobile devices.

New rubrics features include:

  • All rubric assessments and feedback updates for discussions and grade items now automatically save in draft state while updates are in progress
  • Rubrics in draft state are not visible to learners until the instructor selects Save & Publish, at which time learners can immediately view their feedback from Assignments, Content, Discussions, Grades and User Progress
  • Instructors can choose to bulk publish feedback to all or select users at once, such as for an entire class or group
  • New Retract Feedback option enables instructors to remove published feedback from view of learners for changes to the Total Score. The Overall Score and Overall Feedback portions of the rubric can be edited without retraction
  • A grading pop-up window for easier grading that contains all rubrics for the discussion, a place to enter Overall Feedback, and a list of posts that the student has made
  • When grading on mobile devices, vertical margins are reduced for easier viewing

Quizzes - Add initial text to Written Response questions | New

Instructors can add initial text to Written Response questions in the new Question Experience. Previously instructors could not add initial text into the answers for Written Response questions.

Quizzes - Opt-in for New Quiz Experience removed | New

The opt-in configuration variable d2l.Tools.Quizzes.NewQuizExperienceOpt-In is now removed from the Config Variable Browser. Users can no longer opt out of the new quiz experience.

Rubrics - Improved rubric creation experience | New 

To offer instructors a more streamlined approach to authoring rubric levels and criteria, this release introduces a new, opt-in rubric creation experience. Specifically, the Rubrics tool includes the following enhancements:

  • Quickly create and edit rubric levels and criteria inline using an auto-save experience
  • Easily change rubric type and scoring method during rubric creation
  • Re-order criterion via drag and drop or keyboard
  • Improved logic for point-based rubrics, where new levels automatically follow existing point scoring sequences
  • Individual criterion cells in custom point rubrics dynamically scale when editing the criterion out-of value
  • Overall Score is visually separated from the rubric, displaying in its own section

Figure: The new rubric creation experience


November 2018 (version 10.8.7)

Assignments - Anonymous Marking in Brightspace | Updated

Anonymous marking in Assignments features the following updates:

  • Instructors can see a new icon associated with assignments that have anonymous marking enabled
  • User names are revealed to instructors once feedback is published
  • Publish All Feedback button is available in assignments with anonymous marking enabled to ensure anonymity when publishing feedback
  • Improved confirmation messaging appears to remind instructors to complete feedback for all anonymous users. If Publish All Feedback is selected before providing feedback for all anonymous submissions, the confirmation window will state the number of users with feedback and the total number of users

An assignment displaying the anonymous marking icon for instructors
Figure: An assignment displaying the anonymous marking icon for instructors

 

The Publish All Feedback button confirmation dialog box indicating outstanding anonymous users that still require feedback

Figure: The Publish All Feedback button confirmation dialog box indicating outstanding anonymous users that still require feedback

 

Assignments - Evaluate submissions page displays in full screen | New

The Evaluate Submission page no longer displays navbar links. This provides instructors with more screen space to view and evaluate assignments.

Content - Add existing assignments to content | Updated

The On paper submission and Observed in person submission types available in Assignments can now be added to Content from the Existing Activities menu.

Quizzes - Quizzes display in full screen | New

Quizzes now display in full screen. When a learner clicks Start Quiz, the navbar disappears. This provides additional screen space for the quiz by removing unnecessary navigation elements from view.

Video Note - Closed caption support | New

Users can now add files containing closed captions to their video notes. The captioned text displays when viewing the video note, if users selected the closed caption option.

Widgets - Visual updates to My Courses Widget course tiles | Updated

To provide added value and ease of use to the My Courses widget, the following changes are now available with the widget course cards:

  • New status indicator for Inactive and Closed states for courses
  • Cleaner layout of course name, code, semester, and dates
  • Course notifications are sorted by tool. When a user hovers on the notification icons, a tooltip provides more information.

The My Courses Widget now displays a status badge for courses and sorts notifications by type

New Course Tile

Figure: The My Courses Widget now displays a course status indicator and sorts notifications by type.


October 2018 (version 10.8.6)

Assignments – Anonymized learner names | New

To avoid unconscious bias in the grading and feedback process, instructors can now configure assignments to use anonymous learner names. When the feature is turned on, instructors can only see an anonymized learner name on the assignment submission.

Assignments - New assignment types | New

On paper submission and Observed in person assignment submission types are now available in Assignments. These new assignment submission types do not require users to make a file submission for them to be completed. This allows instructors to create assignments for a wide variety of activities, not just written work, and provide evaluation and feedback for these assignments.

On paper assignments are submitted directly to instructors in class, but allow evaluation and feedback to be completed in Brightspace. A presentation can also be observed in person and evaluated in Brightspace. Both new assignments can be marked as complete by learners, automatically marked as complete on their due date, or marked as complete upon evaluation by the instructor, depending on how the assignment is configured.

The properties tab interface has also been updated to simplify the work flow when creating assignments.

Figure: On paper submission and Observed in person submission types

Figure: Marked as completed options for Observed in person assignments

Figure: Marked as completed options for On paper submissions

Content - Send to Binder | Removed

Located on the Table of Contents page in the Content tool, the Send to Binder option allows learners to send course content to their Brightspace Binder accounts to review offline. With Brightspace Binder approaching end-of-life status, the Send to Binder option from the Content tool will no longer be available as of November 1, 2018.

To access course materials offline, learners can use the Brightspace Pulse mobile app.

HTML Editor - Descriptive error message for quicklinks to unavailable course activities| New

A specific error message now appears to users who click a quicklink to a course activity that is outside the availability dates (not yet available or no longer available). The error message appears for the following unavailable activity types:

  • Assignments
  • Content modules
  • Content topics
  • Checklists
  • Discussion topics

Previously, when clicking a quicklink to unavailable activities, users received a non-specific error page that did not clarify the reason they could not access the activity. The updated messaging for unavailable course activities now aligns with existing messages for unavailable quizzes and surveys.

Figure: The new error message that appears when users click a quicklink to an unavailable course activity

Quizzes- Auto-save during quiz taking | New

Learners' quiz responses are now automatically saved during the quiz taking process. For forced response questions (such as Multiple Choice and True or False), learner responses are saved automatically when they select the radio button or checkbox. Text input questions autosave every 10 to 15 seconds, and html-enabled questions save when the mouse cursor is clicked outside the quiz response input area. Autosave sends save timestamps to the quizzing log, as the manual save function previously did. For quizzes with multiple pages, quiz responses automatically save upon navigating to a new quiz page. The Save all Responses and Go to Submit Quiz buttons have been removed, and are no longer visible on the quiz page. The only button now visible on the quiz page is Submit Quiz. If internet connectivity is lost during the quiz-taking process, learners can answer questions but are unable to autosave questions or submit the quiz until the connection is restored.

Figure: The autosave function as it appears beside questions, and a simplified left navigation panel

Quizzes - Removal of Rubrics | Updated

Instructors can no longer attach a rubric to a quiz or grade rubrics already attached to a quiz.

Any data stored in rubrics is retained.

Rubrics - Improvements to features and workflows in the rubrics grading experience in Assignments | New

Grading with rubrics in Assignments now offers new functions and an improved workflow and design that makes for an easier grading experience and is optimized for use on mobile devices.

New rubrics features include:

  • Rubrics that automatically save in Draft state while updates are in progress. Rubrics in Draft state are not visible to learners until rubric feedback is published, at which time learners can view their feedback from Assignments, Content, Discussions, Grades and User Progress
  • Ability to assess rubrics individually or assess all rubrics in the same grading workflow
  • Separate rubric Total and Overall Score areas. The Total is a numeric value that is automatically calculated, and the value is populated in Grades. The Overall Score indicates level of achievement and is editable by the instructor

Note that the new features and workflow only apply to grading rubrics without associated Learning Objectives. If Learning Objectives are associated with a rubric, the classic rubrics grading workflow remains in place. In addition, the new rubric grading workflow does not yet apply for group assignments.


September 2018 (version 10.8.5)

Content – Print/Download Function added to Overview | New

Users can now download and print an uploaded syllabus from the Course Overview area of Content .

Figure: The Download and Print buttons as they appear in the Course Overview area

Discussions – Create groups and section threads in existing topics | New

Administrators and instructors can now associate existing discussion topics to a new group or section during the group or section creation process. In addition, users can associate existing discussion topics to groups or sections not associated with any other discussion topic. Note that users can only choose existing discussion topics that have no existing discussion posts for association. This feature is useful for creating groups or sections after copying a course, or if discussion topics are accidentally created before groups or sections.

Figure: The Set up discussion areas option, as seen when creating new groups or sections

 

Figure: The Attach to existing topic option, visible when editing an existing group or section

 

Grades - Add grade release date to Grade Event Log | Updated

This feature enables instructors with the Manage Grades permission to view the exact date and time a learner's grade is released or unreleased. The Grade Event Log now includes a column that displays the type of event that occurred (Grade Released and / or Grade Unreleased) in addition to the existing Grade Updated events. As a result, instructors can review and validate the dates a learner's grades were released or unreleased.

Note: No historic data is available for grades that were released / unreleased prior to this feature.

The following events are now included in the User Grades Event Log:

  • Grade Released
  • Grade Unreleased

Groups and Sections – Differentiate between similar learner names in groups and sections | New

Instructors can now differentiate between duplicate learner names by displaying the username or Org Defined Id beside a learner's name. Instructors can enable this option in both the Manage Groups and Manage Sections tools.

Figure: The learner Org Defined Id, as it appears beside the learner’s name

HTML Editor - Add quicklinks to content modules, submodules and course overview | New

Users can now link directly to content modules, submodules, and course overviews (if available) directly from the Insert Quicklink option in the HTML editor. This change allows users to insert quicklinks directly to specific portions of course content within any tool with the HTML Editor. Previously, only a link to the Content tool was available from the Insert Quicklink option in the HTML editor.

HTML Editor - Chemistry equation writing function available in the equation editor | New

A chemistry equation writing function is now available in the HTML Editor. Users can select this feature directly within the equation editor.

Import/Export/Copy Components - Copy awards between courses - New

When copying components between courses, administrators and instructors can now choose to include awards and their release conditions. This allows instructors to reuse awards across different courses and sections in Brightspace Learning Environment.

Release Conditions - Released final grade score condition type | New

Instructors and course designers can release items such as content and awards to learners either based on the learner’s final grade being marked as released or based on their final grade being marked as released and the grade meeting a set threshold. For example, a course survey could be released to a learner once their final grade is released or an award could be released to a learner once their final grade is released and they have received a certain grade. This can be completed everywhere a user can create and attach release conditions.

Instructors and course designers can also use intelligent agents to complete certain tasks based on a learner’s final grade. For example, an intelligent agent could now enroll a student whose grade did not meet a set threshold into a remedial course.

Figure: Set the Release final grade score release condition in the Create a New Release Condition workflow


August 2018 (version 10.8.4)

Quizzes - New quizzing experience default status set to 'on (opt-in)' | Updated

The default status of the d2l.Tools.Quizzes.NewQuizExperienceOpt-In configuration variable is now set to ‘on (opt-in)’. This allows instructors to toggle the new quizzing experience in their courses to familiarize themselves with the new user interface and workflow changes. The ‘off’ value for the d2l.Tools.Quizzes.NewQuizExperienceOpt-In configuration variable has been removed.

Quizzes – Dynamic preview available in question pools | New

Question pools now include a dynamic preview. The preview displays questions randomly selected from the current question pool. A refresh button allows instructors to navigate through several selections to ensure the question pool is working as expected.

Rubrics - Improvements to rubric feedback for learners | Updated

To provide learners with more detailed feedback on activities and apply a consistent look and feel to rubric feedback, this release includes the following improvements:

  • User Progress displays general feedback, score, and a graded rubric for Grades, Discussions and Assignments. Feedback displays to learners as soon as instructors save rubric and overall feedback assessment
  • Content tool for Assignments displays general feedback, score, and a graded rubric. This replaces the previously displayed Instructor Feedback.


July 2018 (version 10.8.3)

Assignments - New Text Submission type and workflow | New

Instructors can now create Text Submission assignment types in Brightspace Learning Environment. The new Text Submission type allows learners to create text documents for submission directly in Assignments using a rich text editor, eliminating the need to attach a file. Previously, learners had to create documents outside of Brightspace Learning Environment, then add them as attachments to their submissions within Assignments. This feature enables learners to work directly within Brightspace Learning Environment, allowing for a simpler workflow and standard file type submissions.

Figure: Instructors can now select Text submission as part of the workflow to create a New Submission Folder

Figure: The Text Submission editor appears directly on the Submit Assignment page for learners

Brightspace Daylight Experience - Improved widget style for homepages | Updated

System and custom widgets now display more prominently against homepage backgrounds. The new widget container style appears by default for both system and custom widgets. Administrators may temporarily opt out of this stylistic change until October 2018. Administrators and instructors with permission to create and edit custom widgets may continue to opt out of the new container style using the Style this widget option for custom widgets only. D2L maintains control of the system widget style.

Figure: The new widget styles appear as white cards, with 20px of space between the top, bottom, left and right edges of the card and the content. There is a subtle gray background color for the homepage

Quizzes – Removal of image and text information items | New

As images and text can be included in any type of question using the features of the HTML editor, there is no longer a need for image and text information items. Image and text information items in existing quizzes or question libraries convert into sections, and are still displayed to learners attempting the quiz. One section is created for each existing image or text information item. Once the conversion of existing image and text information items is complete, the ability to create new image and text information items is no longer available.

During the question conversion process the following actions occur:

  • Each image and text information item is converted to an individual section
  • If the information item included a title, that is used for the section title
  • If the information item did not include a title, one is automatically generated using the format: Untitled [converted from a Text Information Item], or Untitled [converted from an Image Information Item]
  • The setting to show the Section title to learners is set to off
  • The setting to show Section text to students is set to on
  • For text information items, the Question Text field is set as the Section Text field
  • For image information items, the Section Text consist of an image tag, followed by the Caption text. If there was a Description for the image, it is included as the alt text of the image.


June 2018 (version 10.8.2)

Copy Course Components - Date Offset | New

When instructors copy the content of one course to another, old course dates are also copied over. This feature enables instructors to offset those old dates to dates relative to the new semester. This feature also eliminates the burden of tweaking delivery and due dates for their learners. When instructors copy course components in bulk, they can enable the offset to occur to the items copied into the course by days or hours.

Grades – Linked discussion threads are now available | New

When assessing a discussion post in the Assess Post pop-up, an instructor can now see a link to the original discussion post. This allows instructors to see more information about why the user posted that reply, or what other learners replied to their post. Previously, there was no hyperlink, and instructors had to open Discussions and manually find the information.

Figure: The Access Topic pop-up now includes a hyperlink to the full discussion post you are grading.
Figure: The Access Topic pop-up now includes a hyperlink to the full discussion post you are grading.

Groups and Sections - Interface improvements on Enroll Users page | New

Fixed headers and wider columns now appear on the Enroll Users page in Groups. This change helps users easily view and scroll through large numbers of groups and sections. This change is available in the Daylight Experience only.
This feature is not supported in the Internet Explorer 11 or Microsoft Edge web browsers. The Enroll Users page retains its previous interface in these browsers and for users who do not have Daylight Experience enabled.

Figure: Headers remain onscreen when scrolling through the list of learners on the Enroll Users page
Figure: Headers remain onscreen when scrolling through the list of learners on the Enroll Users page

HTML Editor – Emoticons available | New

Emoticons are now available across Brightspace Learning Environment in the HTML Editor. Use them to express feelings or mood in announcements, instructions, discussion posts, and anywhere else the HTML Editor is available.

Quizzes – Question pools replace random sections | New

Question pools are now available to improve the process of creating quizzes with randomized questions, and are an effective way of preventing cheating on quizzes. All the functionality random sections provided is now located on a single screen, with a simplified workflow. When creating a question pool, instructors enter a title, the number of questions to select, and the points per question. On the same page, they can browse the Question Library to select the desired questions to add to the pool. Instructors are also able to edit or delete questions in place.

Figure: Select Question Pool from the available options when adding new components to a quiz
Figure: Select Question Pool from the available options when adding new components to a quiz

Figure: Enter a title, number of questions to select, and points per question
Figure: Enter a title, number of questions to select, and points per question

Figure: Select questions from the Question Library and add them to the quiz
Figure: Select questions from the Question Library and add them to the quiz

Rubrics - Control rubric visibility for learners | New

This release introduces the ability to control rubric visibility for learners. This is useful for preventing learners from using preview rubrics as answer keys for activities. For example, an instructor can now describe assessment expectations in assignment instructions, hiding the associated preview rubric. Once the assignment is graded, the instructor releases the graded rubric as part of the learner's assessment details. 
Rubric visibility is controlled in two ways:
- Administrators can set the default visibility of new rubrics at the org unit level. The new d2l.tools.Rubrics.DefaultRubricVisibility configuration variable includes the following options: Always Visible to Learners (default), Hidden Until Feedback Published (learners can see rubric feedback and the rubric definition on pages where the rubric is used), and Always Hidden From Learners. Instructors can change the visibility of individual rubrics at any time.
- Instructors can set the visibility of individual rubrics. Creating or editing a rubric includes the following new options: Rubric is always visible to learnersRubric is hidden until feedback published, and Rubric is never visible to learners

To indicate rubric visibility to instructors, rubrics that are hidden until feedback is published or rubrics that are never visible now display an indicator in the Rubrics section of the associated activity. Visible rubrics do not display an indicator.
This feature implements PIE item D629 and D2623.

Figure: Rubric visibility options in a rubric
Figure: Rubric visibility options in a rubric

Figure: Rubric visibility in a quiz
Figure: Rubric visibility in a quiz

Rubrics - Improvements to rubric feedback for learners | New

To provide learners with more detailed feedback on activities and apply a consistent look and feel to rubric feedback, this release includes the following improvements:
- Rubric feedback now has a consistent appearance across tools in Brightspace Learning Environment, including responsive display on desktops and mobile devices. The grading criteria that a learner achieves in an activity is highlighted in the rubric. Also, the Overall Score row is removed and replaced by a Total row for the entire rubric.
- Rubric feedback for assignments now appears at the top of the Assignment Feedback page.
- Assignments now include detailed overall feedback, rubric feedback, and score in the Content tool. Previously, assignments only included overall feedback and score in the Content tool and Assignment Feedback page. 
- The Discussions and Content tools now include overall feedback, detailed rubric feedback, and score. Feedback displays to learners as soon as instructors save rubric and overall feedback assessment. Previously, discussions only included score.
- Feedback for quiz submissions is now viewed by clicking the new View Feedback link under the Feedback column. Previously, quiz submissions included a text bubble icon that linked to quiz feedback.

Figure: Graded rubric for an assignment showing achieved criteria, instructor feedback, and score
Figure: Graded rubric for an assignment showing achieved criteria, instructor feedback, and score

Figure: A discussion showing instructor feedback, score, and link to the graded rubric
Figure: A discussion showing instructor feedback, score, and link to the graded rubric

Figure: The View Feedback link for quiz submissions
Figure: The View Feedback link for quiz submissions

Rubrics - Display graded rubric feedback In Gradebook | New

For a consistent and simplified user experience, learners can now view their graded rubric feedback in Gradebook for discussions, assignments, and quizzes.
Learners can view their completed rubric (including the selected levels and instructor feedback) in the following tools:
- Gradebook (new)
- Discussions (new)
- Assignments
- Quizzes
- Content (classic Content experience), where the activity is included (Assessment section)

For instructors, this change impacts how they use rubrics with activities. They can assess discussions, assignments or quizzes from the corresponding tool, and the completed rubric displays in its entirety in Gradebook (if the activity has a linked grade).
For administrators, this functionality is controlled by a new, temporary d2l.tools.Rubrics.DisplayActivityRubricsOnGrades configuration variable at the organization level. For example, if a rubric is attached to a discussion, and the rubric is evaluated by the instructor in Discussions, the results of the rubric are visible to the learner from the associated grade. By default, this configuration variable is turned off.
This feature implements PIE item D112, D2629, D2617, and D1316.

Figure: A note in the Grade Editing page indicating that while the grade item has a rubric, it cannot also be associated with an online activity
Figure: A note in the Grade Editing page indicating that while the grade item has a rubric, it cannot also be associated with an online activity

Rubrics - New interface for previewing rubric definitions | New

This release introduces a new interface for instructors and learners to preview rubric definitions. Rubrics are used to evaluate an activity or item based on a predefined set of criteria. They help ensure that activities and items are evaluated fairly and consistently.
The new interface includes the following changes:

  • Rubric definition previews open in a pop-up window or are embedded in the assessment view (such as an assignment or discussion)
  • Each rubric definition preview accommodates current rubric types (6 levels and 10 criteria)
  • Rubric definition previews maintain a consistent appearance across tools in Brightspace Learning Environment, including responsive display on desktops and mobile devices
  • Overall Score row is removed and replaced by a Total row for the entire rubric 
  • Rubric criteria groups display as mini-rubrics


Figure: Rubric preview embedded in the Assignment tool

Figure: Rubric preview embedded in the Assignment tool

Figure: Holistic rubric in the new Rubric definition interface
Figure: Holistic rubric in the new Rubric definition interface

May 2018 (version 10.8.1)

Grades - Locked Name column and header row | New

This Daylight-only feature introduces the locked Name column and header row in the following pages within Grades, so that instructors can scroll through user grades without losing the context for which and whose grades they are looking at:

  • Standard View 
  • Spreadsheet View
  • Grade Category
  • Grade Individual Item
  • Final Grades

The existing solution that repeats the Name column and header row every x columns / rows is only available on legacy web browsers (Internet Explorer 11 and Microsoft Edge). The new locked Name column / header row is present on Chrome, Firefox, and Safari web browsers and is not present on Internet Explorer 11 and Microsoft Edge web browsers. The locked Name column /header row will not be active when using a small screen space such as a mobile device.


Manage Dates - Improvements to the Manage Dates tool | Updated

This feature includes the following improvements to the Manage Dates tool:

  • Offset other activity dates – In addition to offsetting start, end, and due dates, instructors have the option to offset other dates associated with activities. Affected dates are: discussion topic and forum locking dates, quiz submission view dates, quiz report dates, and survey report dates.
  • Manual calendar events - Instructors can edit the start and end dates of events that were manually created and not tied to existing activities or content topics. As a result, instructors can manage all course dates from a single location.
  • Improved sorting of items to follow tool sort order - Manage Dates display activities in the order in which an instructor would see them in their respective tools.
  • Display of course start and end date - The course start date and end date appears at the top of the Manage Dates page and acts as a reference for instructors when operating on the dates of the various activities. If instructors have the Manage Courses > Change Start and End Dates permission, they can launch a dialog box and then edit the dates.
  • The Tool column on the Manage Dates page has been removed - You can use the Typecolumn to sort the Manage Dates page based on the tool-specific order.
  • New links to the Manage Dates page - The new Review and Manage Dates button appears at the end of copy course components, course import, and course import advanced.


April 2018 (version 10.8.0)

Brightspace Daylight Experience - Visual indicators of role switch and user impersonation states on the navbar | New

Users who switch roles or impersonate other users can see a visual indicator of the role and/or impersonation state on the navbar. Having a visual reminder ensures that users do not make changes or perform tasks erroneously while signed into another role or navigating as a different user.


Users can see the name of the person they impersonate and the role they switch to

Figure: Users can see the name of the person they impersonate and the role they switch to

Discussions - Grading discussions | Updated

This feature updates the discussions grading experience for instructors. Now, when an instructor is grading a discussion, the Assess Topic dialog box opens as a pop-up window regardless of the dialog box option the instructor had set under Account Settings. As a result, the instructor can move the Assess Topic dialog box to another screen and continue reading discussions or navigating through a learner's discussions on a different screen without closing the Assess Topic dialog box.

Grades - Adding feedback in bulk | New

This feature enables instructors to add generic feedback on learners' grades in bulk. Instructors can use replacement strings to personalize their feedback. Instructors can also sort the Feedback column in the Gradebook and quickly determine which learners require feedback.

This feature implements PIE item D3953.

Add feedback in bulk

Figure: Add feedback in bulk

Options to sort the Feedback column in the Gradebook

Figure: Options to sort the Feedback column in the Gradebook

Groups and Sections – Create sub-groups from sections and group | New

Users can now create sub-groups, based on Section or Group enrollment, within the Groups tool. When creating a new Group category, the Restrict Enrollments To option allows the user to restrict Group enrollment by course sections and all course-level groups. Users can only apply one enrollment restriction, and when selected populates the Group Prefix area with a relevant title.
The feature introduces the d2l.tools.groups.RestrictCrossSectionGroups variable, which affects who can view sub-groups. Users can reverse this variable setting, and turn the variable on and off within a course.
Additionally, the RestrictedbyOrgUnitId API allows users to create groups out of users within a specific section or group though the API.

This feature implements PIE items D1282, D472, and D3830.

The Restrict Enrollments To option as it appears when creating a new Group category

Figure: The Restrict Enrollments To option as it appears when creating a new Group category

Manage Dates - Improvements to the Manage Dates tool | Updated

This feature includes the following improvements to the Manage Dates tool:
Dates display for the following activities:
- Quiz submission view names and dates
- Quiz report names and dates
- Topic unlock dates
- Forum unlock dates
- Checklists
- Surveys
The Status column on the Manage Dates page now reads as Visibility Status.
The Status options have been updated from HiddenLimited, and Visible to HiddenVisibleVisible with conditions, and Hidden. Conditions are inactive.
The following objects have been renamed:
- Grade Object reads as Grade Item or Grade Category
- Module reads as Content Module
- Topic reads as Content Topic
The Discussion Forum icon has been changed to reflect that it is a container of other things.
The Grade Category icon has been changed to reflect that it is a container of other things.
Dates in the DueStart, and End columns are clickable and instructors can launch the Edit dialog box to make any changes.
From the Manage Dates page, instructors can now edit, offset, and bulk offset the start, end, and display in calendar options for surveys.

Updated Manage Dates page

Figure: Updated Manage Dates page


March 2018 (version 10.7.11)

Manage Dates – Manage due dates | Updated

Instructors can now edit due dates in the Manage Dates tool.
Due Dates are available for Content topics, Assignments, and Quizzes. A Due Date filter is available under ‘advanced filtering’. Due dates can be edited on an individual basis, in bulk across multiple items, and through bulk offset.

Quizzes - New user interface for creating sections | New

This feature introduces a new, simpler user interface (UI) for creating sections in a quiz. The new UI includes a preview of the quiz section.

Figure: Creating quiz sections - old user interface
Figure: Creating quiz sections - old user interface

Figure: Creating quiz sections - new user interface with preview
Figure: Creating quiz sections - new user interface with preview

The Section Title and Section Text are now visible to learners by default. Instructors can select the check boxes beneath each field to hide the Section Title and Section Text from learners.
The Save drop-down menu also includes a Save and New option and a Save and Copy option.

The following options have been deprecated in the New Section user interface:
- Image > Add a File. You can add a file using the HTML Editor.
- Line breaks after each section name
- Display message and image
- Section feedback
- Private Comments


February 2018 (version 10.7.10)

HTML Editor – Advanced image editing | Updated

This feature updates the HTML Editor to include expanded image editing capabilities for the WYSIWYG editor where PowerPaste is enabled. Users can now edit images in place (including flipping, rotating, and adjusting brightness, sharpness, and color), edit the image description, and edit the size of the image. Users with access to Manage Files can save image edits to the Manage Files area, while users without access to Manage Files can save images as attachments. This feature implements PIE item D3975.

This update is currently exclusive to creating discussion posts, announcements, and content (excluding module descriptions).

Note: Image changes save to Manage Files, or, depending on user permissions, as new file attachments to the item (such as Discussions) every time a change is made. Multiple edits will create multiple items.

Figure: Advanced image editing screen in the HTML Editor
Figure: Advanced image editing screen in the HTML Editor

Figure: Image editing provides the ability to customize image description and sizing
Figure: Image editing provides the ability to customize image description and sizing

Figure: Manually resize the image in the image editor
Figure: Manually resize the image in the image editor

Question Library – New question import workflows | Updated

This feature adds new ways for instructors to search the Question Library when adding questions to a quiz. Using a slide in panel featuring the questions in a tree structure enables easy navigation of questions to be added to quizzes. The ability to sort questions by their source collection, question type, points value, and question text has also been added. This feature appears in new quiz upload files and the Question Library.

The Browse Question Library import window
Figure: The Browse Question Library Import window

Users can select the source of the questions to be reviewed
Figure: Users can select the source of the questions to be reviewed

Users can sort questions by type, point allotment, and title
Figure: Users can sort questions by type, point allotment, and title

Users can filter specific questions within the Question Library window
Figure: Users can filter specific questions within the Question Library window

Quicklinks – Self-Enrollment groups link | Updated

Instructors can now insert a Quicklink to self-enrolling groups. This update provides learners a direct path to sign up for their group and a new Group Self-Enrollment screen.

This feature implements PIE item D316.

Figure: The Self-Enrollment Groups option, as shown in the Insert Quicklink pop-up window
Figure: The Self-Enrollment Groups option, as shown in the Insert Quicklink pop-up window

Figure: The new Group Selection screen, from the Group Enrollment option in the Insert Quicklink pop-up window
Figure: The new Group Selection screen, from the Group Enrollment option in the Insert Quicklink pop-up window

Quizzes - Due dates available | New

To improve the consistency of dates across tools in Brightspace Learning Environment, due dates are available for quizzes. This allows instructors to better communicate when quizzes are due, and better identify when a learner submits a quiz late. This change impacts when quizzes are marked as late. A quiz is now considered late if it is submitted after the due date is reached. Previously, ‘late’ referred to attempts submitted after the time limit of an ‘enforced time limit’ quiz was exceeded. Quizzes submitted after the due date are labeled ‘submitted late’. Quizzes submitted after the time limit is reached are now labeled as ‘exceeded time limit’.