Below are links to tips, tools and strategies that you can use to teach and support your students and their learning from anywhere.
- For support with your online teaching, please reach out to the Instructional Technology Team at email@example.com.
- We can set up individual or group consultations by phone or via virtual meeting.
Dear UTM Instructors and Staff,
Online Faculty Help Sessions: Tuesdays & Thursdays from 12 - 1 pm on March 24th, 26th, 31st and April, 2nd, 7th, 9th.
The publicly available UTM Teach Anywhere Quercus information is available at https://library.utm.utoronto.ca/faculty/quercus/teach-anywhere.
Also, we have created a UTM Teach Anywhere Quercus course and have sent an invite to all UTM instructors who are currently teaching full and half year courses. This is a central online place to work together, share information and meet online. If you are a UTM instructor who is currently teaching this semester, you should be able to access the UTM Teach Anywhere course already by logging into Quercus at https://q.utoronto/ca with your UTORid and password.
If you declined the invite in Quercus and would like us to resend an invitation, please let us know by entering your information in this form - FORM - Request for reinvite to UTM Teach Anywhere Quercus course.
If you require Zoom access,
Login to submit a ticket to request access. Zoom meetings can accommodate up to 300 people.
Your request should include the following information
- Course code
- Size of the class
- Day and time of your session(s)
Please indicate if you are requesting large enrollment Zoom option for a class of greater than 300 participants (this option usually requires at least 72 business hours) and can be used for up to a maximum of 1,000 participants (NOTE: This would have limited functionality).
- KEEP IT SIMPLE! Like us, students may also experience disruptions due to family or other obligations.
- Consider how to better support student learning using these accessibility resources - https://q.utoronto.ca/courses/46670/pages/build-your-course#accessibility.
- Think of your course content, assessments, and activities in terms of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) principles
- Provide multiple means of representation (e.g., think +1 - if you have text add an image)
- Provide multiple means of action & expression (e.g., think +1 - discussion board activity and written reflection)
- Provide multiple means of engagement (e.g., think +1 - collaborative activity and self-assessment)
- Ensure all course documents and materials are linked or posted through your course site (e.g., syllabus, readings, library links). You can do this in Quercus by uploading Files, creating Pages or Modules.
- As a U of T Faculty, Librarian, Staff or Student, you can download Office 365 for Mac, Windows, iOS or Android for your personal computer / device – https://onesearch.library.utoronto.ca/ic-faq-categories/office-365-proplus.
- For faculty and staff managed computers that are set up by the UTM I&ITS Service Desk, please visit the UTM Service Desk in CCT0160 or give them a call at 905-828-5344 for support.
- Enable Course Tools in Quercus: Some Quercus tools need to be enabled before you can access them from the course menu.
- Turn "ON" Email Notifications: Keep communication lines open by ensuring your notifications are "ON", and also recommend that students leave their notifications on. Announcements and email notifications support quick and direct communication with students.
- Gradebook Settings - Set up your Gradebook so that student grades are hidden before you post them. Use Points for assignments and quizzes.
Prepare to Meet Virtually:
- Using Bb Collaborate - enable Bb Collaborate (max. 250 participants) for use directly from within Quercus to teach online, share content with participants, run virtual office hours, and record a lecture which can then be shared with students.
- UTM Faculty, Staff and Students can also use Zoom (max. 300 participants) to meet online.
- MS Teams Video (max. 250 participants) can be used by faculty and staff. A faculty / staff UTORid is required to set up the meeting and participants do not need to have a UTORid - https://easi.its.utoronto.ca/shared-services/office365/teams/ - look in the Get Help box.
- Prepare by downloading these useful tools:
- Snagit - available to all faculty for free and can be used to record audio and on-screen presentations.
- PowerPoint - part of the Office 365 Suite that can be used to present content, record accompanying narration, and export in video format. This may be uploaded to a streaming option and embedded in your Quercus course.
- Skype for Business - part of the Office 365 Suite that can be used for online meetings to share content with participants.
- Use these streaming options to embed videos in your Quercus course:
- MyMedia - a U of T platform for that can be used to store video and optionally limit sharing to the U of T community. Videos stored in MyMedia may be embedded in your Quercus course.
- Microsoft Stream - part of the Office 365 Suite that can be used to store video and to limit sharing to the U of T community
- Consider options for recording equipment:
- Use a headset for better audio.
- Use basic tools that you have available (e.g., webcam and microphone on your laptop or cell phone) and are viable options, but the results may not be optimal, so use a wired Internet connection when possible for a more reliable and stable online experience.
Quercus uses Modules and Pages to add and organize course content. You can upload files such as your syllabus or PowerPoint presentations directly into your course in order to share them with students.
- Adding Content using Modules
- Adding Content using Pages
- Making your content accessible in Quercus
- Adding SCORM Content
- Files Area
If you have questions about online assignments that will meet student learning outcomes and objectives please contact Ann Gagné, Educational Developer, Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Center - firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Assignment tool allows students to submit written assignments directly within Quercus. This gives instructors (or anyone with grading privileges) the option of assigning grades and providing feedback (e.g., as a message attached to the grade) within Quercus. Assignments can be added to any module, and you can create as many of them as you need.
Once your students have submitted their assignments, you will be able to view and grade their work using the SpeedGrader tool that is accessed via the Gradebook. You may also want to provide a link for your students to the instructions for students on how to submit and verify assignments in Quercus.
Assignment Submission Reports
If you require further information about a student's submission, you can use technology-based resources, such as
- Quercus Course Data and Reports (e.g., the Access Report, Gradebook data);
- Turnitin.com integrated with Quercus;
- a simple Google search if you believe there may be similarities with other sources.
For more information regarding academic integrity, please visit the UTM Academic Integrity Website.
- Create an assignment in Quercus
- Create a Turnitin assignment in Quercus
- Create a group assignment
- Create a Journal assignment
- Add a rubric to an assignment
- Create a Two-Step Assignment using Modules with Prerequisites and Requirements
You can use Quercus to run quizzes (tests) and surveys in your course. These tools provide a simple and easy way to poll students, check their knowledge and skills, and provide feedback on their learning.
Choose "Quiz" if you need the names of the individual students to be associated with their particular responses.
With a "Survey" you have the option of making it graded (shows up in the Gradebook) or ungraded (does not show up in the Gradebook).
Note: In order to make a graded or ungraded survey anonymous, you will need to check the box next to "Keep Submissions Anonymous". As an instructor, you can moderate a quiz (e.g., unlock a quiz, provide extensions, etc.). You can also access Quiz Statistics, Quiz Analysis Reports, Gradebook data and Quiz Logs.
For more information on Quercus quizzes and surveys, please follow the link below.
Instructors can create regular, graded, and group discussions that students can use in their Quercus courses.
Below are instructions for creating a discussion:
1. Go to Discussions in the course menu.
2. Click on the + Discussion button.
3. Fill out the name of the discussion in the "Topic Title" field and any instructions in the rich content editor box.
4. Verify the other discussion Options. This is where you can make the discussion "Graded", or next to "Group Discussion", you can check the "This is a Group Discussion" box, and choose the corresponding Group Set from the dropdown menu.
5. Click the Save button to continue editing at a later time or the Save & Publish button to make the discussion visible to students.
The students will now be able to access this discussion by selecting Discussions from their course menu. Below is a video on how to add a Discussion to your Quercus course.
Add Discussion Board - Video (35 s)
You can create student Groups in Quercus that can be used for collaboration. You can assign students to groups automatically or manually, or have students use the self-sign up feature.
You can also use student groups to create an associated group assignment or discussion.
Steps for creating groups:
1. Go to People in the course menu.
2. Click on the Groups tab.
Alternatively, if you have already created group sets, click the + Group Set button.
3. Click on the + Group Set button,
4. In the box that appears, specify the "Group Set Name", and whether the students will use Self Sign-Up (if so, check the box next to "Allow self sign-up"), or if you would like to split the students into groups, or create them manually.
Note: If you choose “Allow self-sign up”, you will need to enable the People menu item. Also, if you choose “I’ll create groups manually”, you will need to add the groups and drag & drop available students into them.
5. Click on the Save button.
You can access each Group Homepage by clicking on the 3 dots next to each group.
Students can access their groups by clicking on the Groups icon found in their Global Navigation Menu.
The Group Home Page allows students to create Announcements, Pages and Discussions for their group. They can also upload and access files from their Group Home Page.
Adding content using Modules
The video below shows you how to add content to your course using Modules.
Click here for information on creating Modules with Requirements and Prerequisites
The tools below can be used for online teaching and / or virtual office hours for courses with less than 250 or 300 students. For larger courses, it is recommended that you create a video.
Recommended Hardware for Video Creation or Virtual Office Hours
- Good quality microphone - (e.g., Yeti microphone)
- Headset with microphone (if possible) to eliminate feedback.
- Tripod and mount for phone if it is to be used as a camera.
Options for Meeting Online
- Zoom is an option that can be used for synchronous meetings of up to 300 students. UTM instructors can request a license through UTM I&ITS ticket.
- There is a Zoom option that can support up to 1,000 concurrent participants with limited functionality. This would usually require a minimum of 72 business hours' notice and would be set up through UTM I&ITS ticket.
- Bb Collaborate can be used for classes up to 250 students in Quercus.
- There is an option to use Bb Collaborate in courses of 250 - 500 students (with limited functionality). This would require confirmation regarding scheduling and a minimum of 72 business hours' notice.
- 300 people can join but only 50 active videos can be shown at one time
- Up to 1000 people viewing only
Zoom can be used for virtual office hours with 300 students. With 72 business hours' notice, it is possible to host meetings of up to 1,000 participants (Note: Limited functionality would be available).
Please note: It is recommended that you use a wired connection if you are a Presenter in Zoom.
How do I access it?
Who supports it?
||Log in to submit a ticket to request access||UTM I&ITS Classroom Technology Support||
- 250 concurrent users
- With 72 business hours' notice to email@example.com, it is possible to have large sessions of between 250 – 500 students. NOTE: Functionalities are more limited e.g., viewing content and chat.
Please note: It is recommended that you use a wired connection if you are a Presenter or Moderator in Collaborate.
How do I access it?
Who supports it?
||Can be set up by Teacher in Quercus course shell for courses under 250.
For courses over 250 send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with 72 business hours' notice.
Additional Blackboard Collaborate Resources:
- Use of updated versions of Google Chrome or Firefox is recommended.
- Get Started with Collaborate Ultra for Moderators: https://help.blackboard.com/Collaborate/Ultra/Moderator/Get_Started
- Share Content: https://help.blackboard.com/Collaborate/Ultra/Moderator/Moderate_Sessions/Share_Content
- Blackboard Collaborate Ultra: Student Use: https://qstudents.utoronto.ca/blackboard-collaborate-ultra-student-use/
Video Capture and Streaming Tools
It is recommended that you provide students with an opportunity to do a test run to ensure that everything is working. One simple way to test this out would be to hold Virtual Office Hours or to create a quick video to introduce a new topic and post it for your students.
Create a Video
Create a video of your lecture content for your students that they can view as their schedule permits (asynchronous). It is recommended that you use the MP4 video format for video creation. Once you have created the video, you will need to upload it to a Streaming Server to make it available to students. To discuss what content would work best in video format as opposed to another modality pedagogically, please contact Ann Gagné, Educational Developer, Robert Gillespie Academic Skills Centre - email@example.com.
The following tools can be used to record your lecture. Please make sure all your videos are captioned for accessibility and AODA compliance and that students can have access to a transcript of the video.
How do I access it?
Who supports it?
Links, Operating Systems Supported
TechSmith SnagIt – Very basic video capture and editing functionalities
NOTE: It is possible to use O365 PowerPoint with automatic subtitles and record it with SnagIt so that they are captioned.
|Follow the instructions found at https://q.utoronto.ca/courses/46670/pages/lecture-capture#get-techsmith-snagit||
U. of T. (institutional level)
Camtasia – Can add captioning, textboxes, animations, add effects, etc.
NOTE: Windows version has speech-to-text captioning functionality.
|Email firstname.lastname@example.org to book the UTM Library Audio Visual Pilot Recording Room||U. of T. Mississauga Library||
|iMovie – More advanced video editing options available.||Available in your Mac Applications folder||Apple||
|PowerPoint – Possible to create and export narrated PowerPoint as an .mp4 video.||MS PowerPoint on a Windows computer||U. of T. Mississauga Library||
Once you have created your lecture video content, it will need to be uploaded to a media streaming service and you can create a link to the video in Quercus so that it can be shared with students.
How do I access it?
Who supports it?
Functionalities and Notes
||Log in at the following link
|U. of T. Libraries hosts the service. U. of T. Mississauga Library provides assistance.||
||Users will need to create a Google account at
- Check this website for important messages and updates posted about the University's status and closures. Find information about emergency contacts.
- Register to receive urgent telephone, email, or text alerts.
- Quercus/Canvas System Status Information
- Instructure (the company behind Quercus/Canvas) posts system updates in case of outages or planned maintenance on their system status page.
- Continuity Planning for Instructors at the University of Toronto
- Access the Center for Teaching Support and Innovation (CTSI) guidelines for instructors, including the University of Toronto Policy on Academic Continuity
- Continuity Planning for Instructors at University of Toronto Mississauga
Thank you to Alicja Wigglesworth and Maureen LaPier, Faculty of Arts & Science.
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