No Matter the Mode, Learn@UW Tools Can Help

Tue August 17, 2021

Over the past year and a half, more instructors than ever have discovered the benefits – both to themselves and their students – of using the learning technologies in the Learn@UW suite. Even with the reunification of campus and over 90% of courses planned for in-person instruction, many will continue using these tools in hybrid, remote and in-person instruction. 

To help prepare instructors for the fall, the Learn@UW–Madison team is providing trainings, updates on tools, reminders and resources. Plus, instructors can always contact the DoIT Help Desk for technical assistance or to schedule a consultation with the Learn@UW-Madison team.

Trainings in August

Virtual trainings are being offered during the week of August 23 to anyone interested in learning more about the Learn@UW suite of learning technologies. These sessions will be delivered via Zoom and the link to the Zoom room will be included in the confirmation email sent after registration.

Tool Updates

Canvas: New Library Dashboard & Updated Features 

Library Dashboard

This fall, there will be a new “Library Dashboard” tool for Canvas courses that enables direct, in-Canvas access to UW Libraries’ Research Guides. The “Library Dashboard” navigation link shows up by default in Canvas and replaces the “UW Libraries Research Guides” and “UW Libraries Course Reading Lists.” 

Comment Library in SpeedGrader

Instructors can now create a stored library of comments that are accessible from within SpeedGrader. For more information on this time-saving feature, see How Do I Use the Comment Library in SpeedGrader?

New Discussions Tool

Although the existing Discussions feature remains the default, a “New Discussions” tool is available as an opt-in feature per course. Notable changes include the addition of sorts and filters, reorganization of commands and toolbars, and optimized utilization of white space. 

Although future versions of the New Discussions tool will bring it closer to parity with the current Discussions tool, it is not there yet. This means that some features found in the existing default do not exist in the new version. For this reason, Learn@UW-Madison strongly recommends instructors test and explore before activating it within a course. 

Honorlock: Updated Features

Student Toolbar

To enhance the student experience, the Student Toolbar with the following buttons is now available within Honorlock during proctoring sessions. 

  • Calculator: Opens/closes the Honorlock basic or scientific calculator if made available by the instructor
  • Exam Guidelines & Allowed Websites: Opens/closes a sidebar containing the instructor’s exam guidelines and authorized URLs
  • Proctor Window: Brings the proctoring window to the front of the screen 
  • Hide Toolbar: Collapses the toolbar
  • Selecting the three vertical dots opens a sidebar with links to the Honorlock KnowledgeBase and 24/7 chat support. 

Copy/Paste Toggle

Within exam proctoring settings, a toggle allows the instructor to disable copy/paste in the exam proctoring settings. This option has been available to instructors creating assessments in Canvas, and now is available to those creating 3rd party assessments as well.

Terms of Service

Students may notice that Honorlock now prompts them to agree to the Terms of Service and Data Collection and Use policy before launching every proctoring session. Previously agreement was only required at the time of the Honorlock chrome extension download. 

Zoom in Canvas: Blackboard Collaborate No Longer Available 

Zoom web conferencing is integrated with Canvas. The UW System contract for Blackboard Collaborate Ultra web conferencing ended this summer. Many instructors already use Zoom in Canvas, but the DoIT Help Desk can assist those transitioning from Blackboard Collaborate.


Course Syllabus Template in Canvas

The university’s recommended course syllabus template includes the standard set of requirements and has also been recently updated. The updated template can be viewed, edited and used via a downloadable Word document or digitally through the Course Syllabus (AEFIS) tool in Canvas.

Engage eText Ordering Period

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. Although it’s never too early to start thinking about next semester, the ordering period for these materials will likely occur in October or November. Details and updates will be posted here.

Accommodation Requests 

The McBurney Disability Resource Center’s Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) services team is currently emailing instructors with media captioning and live captioning/interpreting accommodations requests for summer and fall courses. The team provides guidance on planning for these accommodations, information on available accommodation options including professional captioning, and steps for coordinating Canvas access. Instructors without media captioning accommodations in their course who would still like to add captioning can implement machine captioning via Kaltura MediaSpace or contract captioning vendors.

Resources & Support

Fall 2021 Instruction Webpage  

The Office of the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning’s Fall 2021 Instruction webpage provides information about how certain campus COVID-19-related policies and guidelines impact instruction and where to get support. 

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, Blackboard Collaborate, Engage, Pressbooks, Atomic Assessments, Turnitin and LEAD. For Honorlock, contact the vendor via email at, phone at 844-243-2500, or Honorlock’s chat feature within Canvas. For Top Hat, contact the vendor at For Piazza, contact the vendor at or visit