Join Aaron Quigley for an in-depth discussion in this video Adding students to a class, part of Up and Running with Desire2Learn.
In order to explore how Desire2Learn plays out in the classroom, we need to go ahead and add some students to our course. So we can start using the course management functions. To do this we're going to click on our Edit Course icon we added in the upper navigation. From here we're going to scroll down to Learner Management and we're going to click on Classlist. Now currently in our class list, the only person enrolled is us as the teacher. From the class list home page, we're going to go and click on Add Participants. Now, there's three different ways that we can add participants to this class. We can look for existing users, such as other teachers in your organizational unit all ready using Desire to Learn.
Or other students that have all ready been built into the system, either by your school or district or that have had you in the past. We can also choose to create and enroll a new user. Here we can type in the user's student ID number, their first and last name, email address, we can even assign them a new password. However, to use this feature, I would have to go in and enter each student individually. The third option is to import users from a file on your computer. This is the fastest way to add an entire class. For this course we're going to go ahead and select Import users from a file on your computer. Now when we're choosing to Import students from a list, there are some very specific formatting we need to take care of.
First off the file has to be a TXT or a CSV and it must be in the ASCII format. It cannot just be a Word document or a Rich Text document. There is also a very particular format that the data has to be ordered in. It needs to start off with the organization, defined ID or student ID number. Then, the first name followed by the last name, email, the role, which'll be student for all of our students. And we can also choose to change their password at this time. Please note that the only things that are required in this file are the first name, last name and role. However, there still needs to spaces and commas for these other areas.
That way the system knows what piece of data goes in what location. There's a very simple way to create this file. And we're going to use Excel to do that. I'm going to go and quickly open up Excel. And here I have all this information typed out. I have the student ID numbers in column one, student first names in column two, student last names in column three. And the fourth column has their student email addresses. I have their roles as students. And in the fifth column, I don't want to assign a password. Now, before I actually export this as a CSV file, which the system will read, the last thing we need to talk about is what happens if I don't want data.
For example, I don't want to change their passwords. What I need to do is tell Microsoft Excel that there still needs to be that space included in our CSV file, because it's only going to look for cells with content. To do that I've actually clicked into the cell and I've just added a couple of spaces. Now that I've got a couple spaces in that cell, there's some content, I can go ahead and copy it and paste it all the way down the rest of my class list. At this point, I'm ready to export this file. To do this let's go ahead and chose File, we're going to go to Save As and we're going to save this as, or let's call this Class List.
I'm going to put this in Chapter 6 of the Exercise Files. And under Format I'm going to go ahead and scroll all the way down to MS DOS Comma Separated file. This is going to take each cell, print out that information, put a comma and then go to the next cell. It's only going to look for cells that have some kind of formatting to them, which is why we needed to put the spaces in the password cell. Let's go ahead and click Save. It's going to tell me that this new file will not have some of the functions of Excel and that's okay. I'll go ahead and click Continue. Now before we go ahead and import this file, creating this Excel spreadsheet can be very, very simple.
If you use Power Teacher gradebook or even N grade, you can run reports and actually choose the order that the data will come out of your grade book. A lot of districts online student manager programs will also allow you to run reports into either Excel or a CSV file. So please check with your district before you waste a lot of time typing up student information. You may be able to generate this report from the tools your students are already built into. So back here in Desire to Learn, I'm going to go ahead and import the file by clicking on the Choose File button. Located in the Exercise Files under chapter 5, I'm going to choose that Class List file we just created.
I've also included a student list doc tst file so you can follow along with us if you don't have Excel. Let's go ahead and click the Open button and I'll click Import. So here the system automatically brought in all of my students. It's given them the role of students, I can scroll down and see that I now have 18 people enrolled in my class. I'm going to click on the Done button and now I can see that I've got a lot of students enrolled in my class, their e-mail address came over just fine. As well as their role of student. From my Class List I can also click on individual students to go in and send them messages.
I'll cancel out of that. I can also use the small drop down arrow in my Class List to view any information I choose to about a student. The Class List is a powerful tool that allows you to both add students, communicate with them and get information on them.
- Exploring the Desire2Learn layout
- Drag and drop course building
- Creating a graded dropbox
- Adding a quiz
- Setting up your gradebook
- Applying grading rules
- Adding logos, backgrounds, and themes to your class site
- Adding students to a class
- Checking attendance
- Participating in class discussion boards
- Setting up release conditions
- Using the Intelligent Agents tool to customize the learning experience