Learn@UW: New Accessibility Checker, Updates & Reminders for Transitioning Semesters

Tue November 16, 2021

The Learn@UW suite of tools will expand on November 22, 2021 with the introduction of the UDOIT course accessibility checker – and that’s not the only update from the Learn@UW-Madison team! Learn about ordering eTexts through Engage by December 1, the extended contract for Piazza, and connecting with colleagues about Pressbooks and LEAD. Plus, get reminders about key activities for transitioning between semesters, like course shells being available November 22, 2021. 

Below are updates about the Learn@UW suite of tools, reminders for transitioning between semesters, and resources. For one-on-one support, contact the DoIT Help Desk for technical assistance or to schedule a consultation with the Learn@UW-Madison team.

Tool Updates

UDOIT: New Tool to Check a Course’s Accessibility 

On November 22, 2021, the new UDOIT course accessibility checker will be integrated in Canvas and displayed on the sidebar for most non-student roles. Instructors and course designers can scan an entire Canvas course for accessibility barriers and correct some directly through the tool. UDOIT is short for Universal Design Online Content Inspection Tool and pronounced “You do it.”

Technology is an intricate part of most courses and learners using it have a wide variety of characteristics and contexts. Accessibility focuses on making course materials easier for all students to access and understand. 

This Learn@UW-Madison KnowledgeBase document provides more details and the team will be providing training sessions in January. 

Engage: Ordering Window for Spring eTexts Closes 12/1

Engage provides integrated access to publisher eTexts via Canvas, as well as access to other publisher-provided tools and resources – typically at a fraction of the print cost. Instructors and course coordinators can order eTexts and publisher Digital Learning Tools (DLTs) for spring through the Order Tool by December 1. Learn more about the benefits and how instructors are using the tool in this news article

Piazza: Contract to be Extended through 2022

Formerly a free tool, Piazza began charging in the early days of the pandemic due to increased usage. In order to maintain instructional consistency, the university signed on to a paid contract with Piazza. The current contract expires on December 31, 2021, but work is underway to renew it so that Piazza remains available without disruption through 2022. University leadership will continue to evaluate use of the tool and consider future renewals.

Pressbooks: User Group Meetings Returning in February

To help Pressbooks users learn more about features and connect with others to hear about the many ways this versatile tool is being used, the Pressbooks User Group will begin meeting again in February. Those interested can fill out this survey to join as well as provide input on virtual events.

LEAD: Demo of Dashboard on 11/17

An upcoming demo provides an overview of the Learner Engagement Analytics Dashboard (LEAD), which displays Canvas, Kaltura MediaSpace and Unizin Engage e-text data. Register to receive the link to the virtual event held on November 17 at 1pm. Learn how LEAD can help answer questions about students accessing course content, determining struggling students, and identifying student performance in relation to a threshold

Reminders for Transitioning between Semesters

Finishing Fall Semester

Submitting Final Grades in Canvas

For courses ending on or before December 19, the following grading schedule applies to grades reported through the Faculty Center (MyUW). This does not apply to grading in the Law School or grading reported through SMPH’s OASIS.

  • Grade rosters will be created in the Faculty Center on Tuesday, December 14, and instructors will receive a notification email from the Office of the Registrar. 
  • Final grade submission occurs from Tuesday, December 14 until Sunday, December 26 at 11:59PM. Instructions are available for transferring grades from Canvas to the Faculty Center.
  • The deadline to request an extended grading exception is Friday, December 17 at 11:59PM (for eligible courses only). 

The Office of the Registrar’s website outlines the full timeline and FAQ’s. Please keep in mind that this year the last day to submit grades falls on a Sunday and is preceded by two holidays. For that reason, Learn@UW-Madison will not be available to provide technical support December 24-26, which are the final three days. Those anticipating the need for technical assistance should plan accordingly.

Prepping for Spring Semester

Spring Courses and Sections will be Available 11/22

Instructors will be able to access Canvas course shells for spring semester on November 22. Enrollment for spring courses begins on November 15, and courses are created in Canvas one week after enrollment begins based on data from the Student Information System (SIS). 

Spring course sections in AEFIS will also be available on November 22. AEFIS course evaluation default dates for spring term are April 22-May 6.

Create Digital Syllabus in Canvas

Instructors can easily create a digital syllabus within Canvas using the Course Syllabus (AEFIS) navigation link. The tool provides an editable syllabus template that automatically populates information for a number of required syllabi components, such as course name, credit hours, and formally approved course learning outcomes, while also accommodating section- and instructor-specific details and expectations.

If the Course Syllabus (AEFIS) is not displaying on your Canvas course navigation, go to Settings > Navigation to add it. See this Canvas help document “How do I manage Course Navigation links?” for further guidance.

The university also provides an editable syllabus template in Microsoft Word. Find more information about these syllabus templates, along with more details about course syllabi.

Resources & Support

Trainings in January 

Virtual trainings will be offered in January to anyone interested in learning more about the Learn@UW suite of learning technologies. These sessions will be added to the DoIT Academic Technology calendar in December.

Student Tech Modules

Learn@UW–Madison can help students understand how to use supported learning technologies in Canvas with the Student Tech Modules. An instructor can choose which ones to download from Canvas Commons and add to their course as a starting point for communicating with their students. There are Tech Modules available for Kaltura, Honorlock and more.

Consultations & Support

Learn@UW–Madison manages the Learn@UW suite of learning technologies. Our team is available via the DoIT Help Desk to consult on selecting and using the right learning technology to improve student success. The DoIT Help Desk also provides technical support and troubleshooting help for Canvas, Kaltura MediaSpace, AEFIS, UDOIT, Engage, Pressbooks, Atomic Assessments, Turnitin and LEAD. For Honorlock, contact the vendor via email at support@honorlock.com, phone at 844-243-2500, or Honorlock’s chat feature within Canvas. For Top Hat, contact the vendor at support@tophat.com. For Piazza, contact the vendor at team@piazza.com or visit support.piazza.com.