Release Notes

February 2023 (Version 20.23.02)

Intelligent Agents – Support for copying One-Time Run agents | New

This feature allows users to copy, export, and import One-Time Run agents and their schedules. This allows users who utilize course shells which are copied to multiple courses to schedule One-Time Run agents to run as needed in all destination courses.

Note: This functionality only applies to agents that have yet to be run. If the agent has been run, no schedule exists to copy.

Quizzes – Add quiz availability dates to your Calendar | Updated

Instructors can now add quiz availability dates to the Calendar tool in the Availability Dates & Conditions menu in the new quiz creation experience. Instructors can select the Add availability dates to Calendar checkbox when creating a quiz to add quiz availability dates to their Calendar. This feature provides instructors with more control over where Start Dates and End Dates appear to learners. Previously, only the Due Date was automatically added in the new quiz creation experience; and control over adding availability dates was limited to the Manage Dates tool. Instructors previously had to revert back to the legacy quiz creation experience to add quiz availability dates to their Calendar.

The following is a reminder of how Calendar events are generated when using either the legacy or new quiz creation experience:

  • If the Start Date and End Date are set, an End Date event is created.
  • If the Start Date is set, a Start Date event is created.
  • If the End Date is set, an End Date event is created.


Figure: The Availability Dates & Conditions menu displaying the Add availability dates to Calendar checkbox.

Quizzes – Additional paging options | Updated

Two new paging options are available in the Timing & Display menu in the new quiz creation experience. Instructors can choose to display 5 questions per page or 10 questions per page. The change optimizes instructors' options when building quizzes with page breaks.


Rubrics – Keep track of changes to assessed rubrics with enhanced visual cues | Updated

To maintain the integrity of assessments, any rubric that has been used to assess a grade item is locked. However, there may be incidences where it is necessary to add or update the text on a rubric without changing any points, or without adding or deleting any criteria or criteria levels. The text on the rubric, including criteria names and descriptions, level names, and default feedback, can continue to be updated after the rubric has been locked.

Note: It is not possible to edit the name of the rubric using this feature.

When an instructor makes a change to a previously assessed rubric, it is updated with a blue highlight and the text Edited in the lower right corner. When the user saves and closes the rubric, the edit indications no longer appear.

Note: It is only possible to make changes to assessed rubrics that are created in the current course or are copied from another course. Shared rubrics remain locked.


Figure: The Edit Rubric window with changes highlighted and indicated with the word Edited.

January 2023 (Version 20.23.01)

D2L Brightspace Editor – Equations render consistently for all users | Updated

To improve consistency in D2L Brightspace Editor, this release updates the Editor so that it renders all equations during editing or creation in the same MathJax format as when published. This helps with correct formatting and spacing of equations, which makes it easier to review work prior to publishing.

Previously there were layout and styling differences during creation and editing; the former used WIRIS format rendering and the latter MathJax.

Note: There are no changes to the Equation Editor used to create an equation to insert into the editor.


Figure: The Equation Editor showing the rendering of an equation during creation after the January 2023/20.23.1 Release.


Figure: The Equation Editor showing the rendering of an equation during creation prior to the January 2023/20.23.1 Release.

Insights Dashboards – Use data better with the improved user interface and experience for dashboards | Updated

All dashboards in the Insights Portal now have multiple improved interface and user experience updates. The new experience allows for better visibility of dashboard and chart data and creates consistency across the Insights Portal dashboards.

The updated Dashboard provides the following features:

  • Linking and mirroring zoom for all Dashboard charts.
  • Help tooltip to show users how to zoom in and out of charts.
  • Ability to perform a fullscreen zoom on charts.
  • Addition of a Showing only bar to provide visibility into highlighted and muted chart data.


Figure: The new Adoption Dashboard user interface.


Figure: The zoom tooltip for dashboards.

Release Conditions – Additional Replies Only release condition for Discussions | Updated

This release alters the existing release conditions for Discussions by adding a new Replies Only option to the Posts authored in topic and No post authored in topic condition types drop-down menus. This helps instructors release material, or not release material, based solely on replies.

Previously the only options were New Threads Only and Threads and Replies.

discussions release conditions

Figure: The Create a Release Condition dialog with the new Replies Only option selected from the Type drop-down menu.

Rubrics – Discard incomplete evaluations | Updated

The Rubric evaluation workflow provides an autosave feature to streamline the evaluation process; however, if an instructor exited the partial evaluation, the automatically saved parts of the assessment were committed to the rubric and visible to the learner. To provide a better experience in Consistent Evaluation (inline and pop-out views), the instructor has the option to Publish the current evaluation, or to Save as Draft. If the instructor chooses to Save as Draft, the working copy of an evaluation is saved to a temporary file until the instructor clicks Publish, and then commits the assessment to the Rubric. If an instructor clicks the new Cancel button, the working copy is deleted. If an instructor edits a previously published evaluation and then decides to cancel before updating, all the changes in the evaluation, including the rubric evaluation changes, are discarded.

Note: Portfolio and Grade book pop out windows and the Rubric Create and Edit windows currently only support the auto-save functionality.


Figure: The Discard button on an in-process evaluation. The Saving and Saved indicators no longer appear at the top of the evaluation window.

Rubrics – Statistics icon moved to allow more space to grade tasks | Updated

The Rubrics Statistics icon is available when the rubric tile is collapsed and expanded. When the rubric tile is collapsed, the icon appears at the bottom of the rubric tile. When the rubric is expanded, the icon now appears inside the grading task. This change provides expanded horizontal space for evaluators to complete the grading tasks. Previously, when the icon appeared outside the expanded rubric tile, the space available to grade tasks was limited by the space used by the icon. This change provides parity between the legacy evaluation experience and the new Consistent Evaluation experience.


Figure: Previously, the Rubrics Statistics icon appeared outside the collapsed Rubrics tile.


Figure: Now, the Rubrics Statistic icon appears at the bottom of the collapsed Rubrics tile.


Figure: The Rubrics Statistics icon also appears inside the expanded Rubrics tile.

November 2022 (Version 20.22.11)

Group/Section Management – Improved clarity when performing deletions of associated activities | Updated

This feature implements a change to the message users receive in the Delete Category dialog when deleting associated activities (i.e., Assignments and Discussions). The dialog now includes a count of how many assignments or discussions the user is deleting. Previously, this information was not clearly indicated to the user.

In addition, when users create a new Group Category and associated activities, then reach the Workspace Summary page, they are automatically returned to the Manage Groups page. Previously, users would have to re-click Save to return to Manage Groups.


Figure: The updated Confirmation dialog showing details of associated activities to be deleted.

September 2022 (Version 20.22.9)

Quizzes – Create engaging assessments quickly with the new quiz creation experience | Updated

The new quiz creation experience brings create and edit consistency changes from Assignments to Quizzes. For more information on the New Quiz Creation Experience, please be sure to check out our D2L Brightspace Help pages on Creating a Quiz.


Figure: Quizzes tool in Brightspace Learning Environment.

The primary panel on the left contains common, frequently used fields that are always displayed. These fields are most relevant to learners and are core to quiz creation. The add/edit question workflow has been brought into the primary panel, giving users the ability to easily modify quiz questions without the need to navigate to a separate interface.

The right-hand panel organizes additional, more advanced options such as start and end dates, release conditions, and special access. These options follow the same logical groupings as found in Assignments. Other quiz-specific settings can be found in the right-hand panel including creating a password protected quiz, applying IP restrictions, adjusting quiz timing, setting display options, managing attempts, and altering evaluation and feedback settings.

Quizzes – Reduce test anxiety by creating quizzes without time limits | New

With this release, instructors have the option to create quizzes with no time limit. The No Time Limit option is now the default Timing setting for new quizzes.

Previously, instructors who wished to create quizzes with no time limit had to use the Recommended Time Limit option, which was selected by default and set to 120 minutes. This led to confusion for learners because the recommended time limit displayed on the quiz itself.

Instructors can create quizzes with no time limit using either the New Experience or the Classic Experience. In New Experience, under Timing & Display, click Manage Timing and select No Time Limit. In Classic Experience, in the Restrictions tab, under Timing, select No Time Limit.

Learners who take a quiz with no time limit now see No time limit under Time Allowed on the Quiz Summary page and Est. Length: No Time Limit on the quiz itself.

quiz 2

Figure: Instructor view of the New Quiz page with the new default No Time Limit option selected.


Figure: Learner view of a quiz attempt in progress before this update, displaying the recommended time limit.

quiz 4

Figure: Learner view of a quiz attempt in progress after this update, with no recommended time limit displayed.

August 2022 (Version 20.22.8)

Intelligent Agents – Create more flexible agents with fewer criteria | Updated

On the New Agent page, in the Criteria section, all selections under Take Action on Activity are now optional. This means users can now create a new Intelligent Agent that applies to certain roles and doesn't require any other criteria. Users are still required to select one of the options under Role in Classlist.

Previously, to create an Intelligent Agent, users had to select the roles the agent applies to, and one or more conditions the agent must check against: login activity, course activity, or release conditions. If a user attempted to save the agent without selecting a condition to check against, they received an error saying No Agent Criteria Defined.

Also in this update, on the New Agent page, in the Criteria section, under Role in Classlist, the option All users visible in the Classlist is no longer selected by default. This is a precaution to prevent users from accidentally creating an agent that runs against everyone.


Figure: The Criteria section before this update, showing the No Agent Criteria Defined error message when none of the options under Take Action on Activity are selected.


Figure: The Criteria section after this update, with All users visible in the Classlist no longer selected by default, and an asterisk next to Role in Classlist to indicate that the user must select one of the options.

Quizzes – Save time and prevent data loss with the Restore Deleted Quizzes functionality | New

This feature adds a new option in quizzes that allows instructors to restore deleted quizzes. This option appears in the More Actions menu in the Quizzes tool. Instructors using this option are provided with a list of deleted quizzes that indicates when they were deleted and by whom, along with a button to restore a selected quiz.

Restored quizzes automatically have any associated quiz attempts that were already taken, statistics, and scores for those quiz attempts restored as well. Learning Outcomes associated to quiz questions are unaffected, and re-appear with the questions when the quiz is restored. Links to a grade item and competencies are not restored.


Figure: The Restore option in the More Actions drop-down menu of the Manage Quizzes tab.

delete quiz 2

Figure: The new Restore Quizzes page.

July 2022 (Version 20.22.7)

Grades – Copy grade items only copies unique or in-use grade schemes | Updated

This feature updates the Copy Course Components functionality in regard to copying grade schemes to prevent unnecessary duplicates.

When a grade item is copied, any grade scheme associated with the item is also copied. If a grade scheme is not associated to a grade item within the course offering, the scheme is only copied if the grade scheme is unique (i.e., there are no duplicates which match on name, and ranges).

Previously, unassociated grade schemes were always copied over with the grade items, causing numerous unnecessary duplicates.

June 2022 (Version 20.22.6)

D2L Brightspace Learning Environment – Improved and consistent multi-contextual filter dialog | Updated

With this release, Brightspace Learning Environment is refreshing the multi-contextual filter dialog user inferface component to ensure consistent filtering functionality across the platform. Changes to the filter dialog include:

  • Multi-dimensional filters now represent dimensions in a nested list instead of tabs

  • Ensuring that most filter dimensions have a search field

  • Changes in padding and styling for applying filters across each dimension

  • Improved mobile responsive behavior

Previously, only certain filter dimensions had a search field.

The areas of Brightspace Learning Environment being updated by this feature are:

  • My Courses Widget: Department/Semester Filters

  • Insights: Filters on various dashboards

Figure: A comparison of the new and previous My Courses Widget filters.

D2L Brightspace Manage Files – New/Edit File workflow change | Updated

Currently, when choosing the New File or Edit File option from Manage Files, users see a dialog open that must be moved or expanded to become properly visible. If users attempt to use the advanced code editor (source code editor), they open a second dialog that is not sized correctly and cannot be resized due to constraints from the first dialog. 

Now, the New File and Edit File options in Manage Files open in a new tab in the user's browser in order to support more efficient editing. By allowing the editor to open in a new tab, the advanced code editor dialog now opens fully.  


May 2022 (Version 20.22.5)

D2L Brightspace Editor – Improved context link menu supports previewing of quicklinks in D2L Brightspace Editor | Updated

This feature implements a new and improved context link menu in D2L Brightspace Editor. The new menu has the same functionality as before – enabling users to highlight text and create a link, edit the link, remove the link, and preview the link – but now also enables support for the previewing of quicklinks that contain replace strings while editing their HTML. The new formatting context menu continues to allow users to highlight text within the editor and apply formatting or create links.

Previously, when a user created a new quicklink within the editor that contains a replace string, this proved not replaceable by the context menu. Clicking to preview the link resulted in a 404 Error.

The layout of the new Content link menu.

Figure: The layout of the new Content link menu.

The layout of the old Content link menu.

Figure: The layout of the old Content link menu.

The layout of the new formatting context menu

Figure: The layout of the new formatting context menu.

The layout of the old formatting context menu

Figure: The layout of the old formatting context menu.

Manage Files – Improved error message when invalid files are uploaded | Updated

Building on the Manage Files – Users receive warning message when uploading a file blocked due to security | New feature added in the November 2021/20.21.11 release, this feature adds an improved error message to the File Upload dialogue. When a user attempts to upload a file containing one or more illegal characters in the file name, this message explains to the user the reason why the upload failed.

Previously, users received a generic "Oops! Your file could not be uploaded" message, which did not explain the reason the file upload failed.

The File Upload dialogue with the new error message displayed

Figure: The File Upload dialogue with the new error message displayed.

April 2022 (Version 20.22.4)

D2L Brightspace Insights – Quiz filter and contextual help added to Assessment Quality Dashboard | Updated

This feature builds on the Assessment Quality Dashboard updates released in D2L Brightspace Platform 20.22.3/March 2022 with two more usability improvements:

  • A new search input in the Quiz Details area where users can enter the name of a quiz to filter the dashboard results. Filtering the dashboard to quizzes with the same name allows users to compare multiple occurrences of the same quiz to see how the statistics vary.

  • Hover text added to the "!" icons to provide context to users about when to act on flagged quizzes and questions.

quiz filter

Figure: The updated Assessment Quality Dashboard with the Search by Quiz Name box highlighted.


Group/Section Management – Asynchronous Group Creation | New

This feature moves group creation and enrollment to background task, minimizing risk of timeouts when creating large numbers of groups requiring enrollments.

When instructors create and save a new group category, the Groups tool displays the category and prompts instructors that their group or groups are being created in the background; further, it indicates that the instructor will be notified once the groups are created. The instructor who created the group receives a subscription alert in the minibar that indicates that the groups for their courses have been created.

While this is in process, the D2L Brightspace UI indicates that "Group creation is in progress". While processing, users are unable to make changes to groups or enrollments.

To facilitate these changes, and the potential for allowing clients to make much larger numbers of groups in a category, this feature introduces pagination to the Groups tool, that limits each page to a maximum of 200 groups. In addition, the header row for the category has been moved to above the grid and the Delete and Email options are added to the Category dropdown menu.

mange groups

Figure: The updated Groups page with the 'Group Creation in Progress' message highlighted.

manage group 2

Figure: The updated Groups page with the Category dropdown menu and the Delete and Email options highlighted

March 2022 (Version 20.22.3)

D2L Brightspace Insights — Additional features added to the new Assessment Quality Dashboard

This release introduces several improvements to the Assessment Quality Dashboard:

  • New Flagged Question card added to the Summary area. When a user clicks this card, it filters the Quiz Details table and displays a "flagged questions" status indicator at the top of the page to indicate that this filter is in place. The Flagged Question card can be turned on and off in Settings. Flagged questions are those that are outside the set threshold for acceptable values in their statistics.

  • New Flagged Quiz Items column added to the Quiz Details table.

  • New "!" icon added next to quiz items that have one or more flagged questions.

  • New In Question Pool column added to the Quiz Item Analysis table to indicate if the item is part of a question pool.

  • Ability to link out to the Quiz edit page from the Quiz Item Analysis added to quickly take action.

insights 1

Figure: Assessment Quality Dashboard with Flagged Question card.

insights 2
Figure: Settings page for Assessment Quality Dashboard with checkbox to turn the Flagged Question card on and off.

insights 3
Figure: Quiz Details table with Flagged Quiz Items column.

D2L Brightspace Learning Environment — Improved layout of show/hide interface

To improve consistency across the platform, this release features a stylistic upgrade to the layout of the show/hide interface. This does not affect usability or change interactions; in addition, all accessibility interactions remain unchanged.

Figure: The updated show/hide interface.

Figure: The show/hide interface before this release.


Content — Media Library added to Classic Content Experience

This feature adds the Media Library to the Classic Content Experience, which is accessible by navigating to Existing Activities > Media Library.

Figure: The Media Library option in the Existing Activities dropdown menu of the Classic Content Experience.

For more information about the Media Library functionality, refer to Evolving The Audio-Video Experience in D2L Brightspace Community.

Content - Workflow improvements to creating media topics

When creating a new video or audio topic in Content, instructors no longer must wait for the uploaded media file to finish processing to continue creating the topic. While the media file remains unavailable during processing, instructors can navigate away from the upload page to work on other content creation tasks. If another user attempts to access the media file in the topic before processing is complete, a message prompts them to wait for the media file to become available. When processing is complete (or the uploaded media file is invalid or corrupted), a notification displays from Update alerts on the navbar, with a link to the organization home page. Previously, instructors had to wait for a media file to complete processing before they could continue creating the topic. Also, a lack of status information about the media file processing caused some instructors to upload media files multiple times, believing that the processing had completed or failed.

Figure: Video file processing messages from Update alerts on the navbar