D2L Brightspace Tools

Most courses offered at Lake Superior College have a D2L Brightspace course “shell” that has access to all the tools listed below. If you’re new to using Brightspace, decide which tools and features will work best to supplement your on-campus courses or give your online students a fuller classroom experience and start using them. When you have more time and experience using Brightspace, start adding more tools or features as they are needed.

There are a combination of resources from the Minnesota State D2L Brightspace Support site and D2L Brightspace YouTube Video Channel, as well as handouts and videos I’ve created on this page.  The first Minnesota State D2L Brightspace Support link is a search of the site for the topic, the results will include anytime the tool or feature is used in an article throughout the site.  If there was a D2L YouTube playlist available, I included that as well as videos for some of the key functions or features.  Some of the tools and features shown in the D2L created materials may not be available for our campus.

Note:  You’ll need to log into the Minnesota State D2L Brightspace Support site using your StarID@minnstate.edu.  These articles are updated as new features are added or changes made to the tool.

Keeping accessibility in mind when you’re building or updating your courses is important.  Please see the Accessible D2L Materials page for ways you can use the built-in tools and features to make sure everyone is able to get the most out of the information you’re providing them.

If you want to learn more about turning on and off tools within your course, please see the Minnesota State D2L Brightspace Support article About Course Tools (KA #1178) for more details.  When you turn off certain tools or features, they may affect other tools.  For example if you turn off Question Collections, you won’t be able to add questions to quizzes or surveys.

If you’re looking for a specific tool or feature but aren’t finding any resources for it, let me know and I’ll do my best to find or make one for you.

Quick Start

D2L Brightspace has a lot of tools that can be used to engage students, but there are four that I recommend using when you’re just getting started – Announcements, Content, Assignments, and Grades.   As you get more familiar with Brightspace, you can add more tools that will enhance your students’ experience.

Here are the Minnesota State D2L Brightspace Support guides, D2L created Brightspace YouTube videos, and LSC created Brightspace videos to help you get started with these recommended tools:

Announcements

Content

Assignments

Grades

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Announcements

Announcements can be used for important notices or changes your students need to be aware of in your class.

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Assignments

Assignments can be used by students to turn in files electronically for your review and feedback.  Assignments can also be used for assessing text submissions, on paper submissions, and observations in person.

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Attendance

Attendance can be used to keep track of your students attendance for activities within your course.

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Awards and Badges

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Calendar

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Chat

Chat similar to instant messengers with all participants online at the same time.

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Checklist

Checklist can be used to highlight important assignments or other activities for your students to complete.

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Classlist

Classlist shows all registered students and allows for quick group e-mails to all students in a single class. Note: This is also where you’d give your students Accommodations as needed.

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Class Progress and View Progress

Class Progress and View Progress can be used to see how your students are doing in your course to make sure they’re keeping up with the materials.

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Content

Content can be used to display syllabi, course assignments, and instructional materials as well as link to activities in the Assignments, Discussions, and Quizzes areas.

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Discussions

Discussions can facilitate student-to-student and faculty-to-student communication during a semester.

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Email

Communicate with your students from within your D2L Brightspace course using the email feature. Note: It’s recommended that you use the email options in the Classlist tool to send messages to people in your course.

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ePortfolio

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FAQ

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Glossary

Glossary can be used to create a list of class terms and definitions for your students to learn.

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Grades

Grades can be used to calculate and show individual students their grades privately.

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Groups

Groups can be used to enroll students into smaller groups and create Discussion/Dropbox for group projects.

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HTML Editor

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Import / Export / Copy Components

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Intelligent Agent

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Locker

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Quizzes

Quizzes can be used to assess the students’ knowledge, using an online quiz similar to a paper version.

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Question Library

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Release Conditions

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Rubrics

Rubrics are the standards the instructor can use to evaluate the activities created for their courses.

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Seating Chart

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Surveys

Surveys tool can be used to obtain, calculate, and display information from your students

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