This is the pin design for the Brightspace Ambassadors Program, designed by Sullivan Steele.

New Program Helps Campus Learn Better Ways to Use Brightspace

The Brightspace Ambassadors Program is currently working to expand its outreach on Shepherd’s campus to help students, faculty, and staff better understand the new learning management system.

Officially replacing Sakai next semester, Brightspace was introduced earlier this summer as an upgraded online system for Shepherd University to use for course organization and administration. Due to the drastic shift between programs, some courses were still offered on Sakai this semester, but will fully transition to Brightspace by the spring.

With the new system, it offers a more modern layout with various helpful features for students and faculty. It is also available as a mobile app, Pulse, which allows students to access upcoming assignments and check their courses on the go. However, there is still much more to learn about Brightspace.

To help get the organization off the ground and introduce itself to the Shepherd community, BSA held a couple of panels and a workshop at the end of October. The two panels were faculty and student-led with a Q&A session at the end to help attendees with any specific issues they had with the system. The workshop was conducted only by students to provide tips for fellow rams. A handful of both professors and students attended the events and provided helpful feedback to be used in future presentations.

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As the fall semester edges closer to the end, BSA is working to come up with events to help further their support on campus in the spring. With problems ranging from how to access feedback from quizzes as a student to utilizing the discussions tab as an instructor, BSA is aiming for ways to assist everyone.

There is discussion of hosting more panels, having a Pulse app training event, and having a spring workshop to help get everyone prepared as the shift from Sakai to Brightspace is finalized. BSA is also hoping to develop surveys and polls to help get a better understanding of topics they should focus on and what events would be most beneficial.

While there are currently no plans of having more events this semester, there are ways to get assistance if you are having issues with Brightspace. Sullivan Steele, a student ambassador, designed pins for the program’s members to wear to signify their role on campus. So, if you spot a person wearing the pin, don’t be afraid to ask them for some tips!

Be on the lookout for events in the spring semester hosted by the Brightspace Ambassadors Program for advice on how to use Brightspace. Check out their website for updates and ways to participate.

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