Springboard is becoming Brightspace

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I work on setting up my Fall courses now?

Yes. You can work on your Fall courses in Springboard like you normally would. Each day, the vendor will transfer your changes to the new site automatically. 

Will I need to transfer my course(s) to Brightspace?

No. The vendor is in the process of doing this for us. Each day, they transfer anything that has changed since yesterday. When you access the new Brightspace site on the 25th, all of your courses and activities will be transferred to the new site. 

Will my existing courses function as they do now?

Your courses will continue to function as they do now. All existing Springboard courses will be migrated to the new environment. There are no plans to delete anything from Springboard. You will, however, have new functionality available to you.

Will Brightspace be different from Springboard?

Yes and No. The Brightspace software has been rebuilt using responsive design so it will adapt to different screen sizes to provide an improved user experience on computers, tablets and smartphones. With new fonts, layouts, and a fresh colour palette, the software is more intuitive and engaging. This does mean that it will look very different than it does now.

Even though it looks different; in most cases, the steps you have been using will continue to work. Once you get past the new look, you should find that your steps look very familiar. In some cases, you should find that you have fewer steps to get things done. The software includes many additional improvements such as deeper integration of accessibility tools, improved data analytics, and new student engagement and assessment tools such as YouSeeU (an assignment-driven student video platform centered around educator and peer-to-peer feedback).

Will the URL change?

Yes. The new URL will be https://brightspace.uakron.edu/. The links in My Akron and on the UA website will automatically be updated to the new URL.

Do I need to change my syllabus?

Yes. We strongly recommend that you change the word 'Springboard' to 'Brightspace' in your syllabi. This includes in website addresses (URL's). For example, the URL https://springboard.uakron.edu/ will be changed to https://brightspace.uakron.edu 

Can I open my course early?

Yes. If you normally open your class before August 24th, you can open your class in Springboard. The system will be down on August 24th. Then students will be redirected to the new site on August 25th. The appearance of the site will look different, but your content will essentially look the same to your students. 

I have external tools integrated with my site. Will those work?

Yes. We are in the process of integrating things like Panopto lecture capture, Turning Clickers, Respondus Lockdown Browser, Respondus Monitor, and a wide variety of publisher integrations. We expect all of these to be working by August 25th.

Will you communicate this change to students

Yes. We are in the process of developing content for Zipmail, digital signage, social media, and print flyers. We will develop a handout that instructors can provide to students.

Will there be training?

Yes. Beginning on August 14th, there will be a number of training sessions that you can take. To view a full list of courses, with description, visit the Brightspace Training page.

Will additional support be available?

Yes. After we complete the migration; the vendor (D2L) will provide support to all faculty, staff and students. This will be available 24 hours per day via phone, email, and chat.  Contact information will be provided in Brightspace through several support widgets.

What about course merges? Who will handle that?

All support requests will go through D2L. For requests related to course merges, aggregate sites, Panopto, publisher resources, etc..., they will forward the request to the appropriate organization. That means that course merges will ultimately be handled by the staff in DDS, just as they are now. 

What if my roster in Brightspace doesn't match Peoplesoft?

Contact D2L support using the support information posted in your Brightspace course. They will forward the request to DDS for us to reconcile your roster with Peoplesoft's. Please keep in mind that new enrollments and drops will still take approximately 24 hours to appear in Brightspace.

What about _____?

Great question. Contact D2L support. If it is something they cannot assist with, they will forward the ticket to UA or may instruct you to contact the vendor. In some cases, the role of the user may dictate different support paths. For example, as an instructor, if you need assistance with Respondus your request will be forwarded to DDS. As a student, they would be instructed to contact Respondus directly.

When can I use the new system?

If you are excited to get started and you are willing to be patient as we learn about the new system, we do have access to a beta site. You can login to that here:  https://uakronprod.brightspace.com/d2l/home  

Please keep in mind that this site is still in development and is subject to change. External integrations may not be functional. This includes PeopleSoft, so rosters may not yet be accurate. All content on the site will be replaced on August 24th with the course content from Springboard, so please be sure to work on your Fall courses in Springboard until we make the cutover. 

We do encourage you to explore the new system! In addition to the training we have training we have scheduled, you can also learn more about the new system on the Brightspace Community site: https://community.brightspace.com/s/