Course Portal Instructor How-To


Site Basics
Class Mailing Lists
Site Features

Site Basics

About Your Course Site

Login to the Course Portal at https://goat.law.upenn.edu/courses using your LawKey username and password. Please note: you must have a LawKey Username and Password to access the Portal.

You will get a listing of the courses you are teaching in the upcoming term.

Every course has a basic Course Information web page which includes course name, meeting time/location, course description, book list, and information about the instructor.
To view your Course Information page, click the [view site] option.
To change site settings, activate and manage site features, or add links to your course's site, select the [manage site] option.
Your site features will be listed after the Enabled Features heading. A class roster is automatically enabled for every course. To view the class roster which includes the name, email address, class, degree, and photo of every student enrolled in your course, select the [course roster] option. Other features that must be enabled in the [manage site] console include seating chart, discussion board, and document dropbox. For more information about site features, please refer to the Site Features section of this document.

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Navigating the Manage Site Console

Click the [manage site] link to begin configuring your course site.

Use the tabs at the top of the page to navigate across the different section. Note: the following tools are now located under the Course Features tab: Discussion Board, Document Dropbox, Wiki, Appointment Scheduler, Classroom Surveys, Blog.

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Course Info

Use the Course Info section to add your office hours and course notices to your Course Information Page.

Enter/update your Office Hours: You can update your office hours at any time. This information will be displayed on your Course Information page (your course's homepage by default.)

Enter Course Notices: You can enter course notices in the box provided. The course notices will be displayed on your Course Information page.

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Site Permissions

This defines who will have access to your course materials. The available permissions are:
Private (Only enrolled students and instructors may view the site.)
Law (Only members of the Penn Law community may view the site.)
Public (Viewable by anyone on the Internet.)
Disabled (None but faculty teaching the course and designated editors.)

If you opt to make your course public, it will be listed on the Public Courses web page that is linked off of the Portal navigation bar. Your course documents, course details page, and wiki (if set to allow public access) will be the only things visible to the public. All other features/tools will not be available to outside users.

Other Administrators: This feature allows you to add additional administrators to your site. By giving someone this privilege, you are allowing them to view and edit your course site and access/administer the various site features (Note: they will be able to access all features except the Takeaway Exams module and the Evaluation Report.) To add an administrator to your course's portal site, type their LawKey username in the box provided. You can add multiple usernames by separating them with commas. If you are unsure of someone's username, use the LawKey users lookup link to search for it.

Other Viewers: This feature allows you to add additional viewer's to your site. By giving someone this privilege, you are "enrolling" them in your course portal site and allowing them to view your course site and the various site features (Note: they will be able to access all features except the seating chart, course evaluations, and takeaway exams.) To add a viewer to your course's portal site, type their LawKey username in the box provided. You can add multiple usernames by separating them with commas. If you are unsure of someone's username, use the LawKey users lookup link to search for it.

Important Note: Changes to site permissions do not change class mailing list membership. If you would like to add additional members to your class list, you will need to do so in the Classlist Admin section.

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Site Content

Posting content to your course site is a two step process. First, you need to upload the file(s) or create the page you would like to make available. Second, you will need to add a link to your site's left menu that points to this folder/file/page. Below is detailed information on all of the Course Portal content features. In general, the quickest way to post content to your site is to create a folder and select the option to link to that folder (You can refer to step by step quick instructions in our Site Content How-To.)

STEP 1 - Add/Manage Your Course Content: Upload an Existing File; Create Folders; Create Web Pages; Add Web Links; Copy Content from Another Course

Click the Add/Manage Your Course Content button to begin adding content to your course site. You will be taken to a page that includes the following options:

STEP 2 - Add/Manage Your Top Level Links: Once you have completed step 1 (uploaded a file; created a web page; or added a weblink), you will need to add a link to your file/page so that your students can access it. The links will appear in the left menu of your course web site.


Note: When using the Create a Web Page or Create a Folder feature--you will be automatically prompted to create a link to your new page/folder after you create it. You can use the Add/Manage Links section to edit the link name or delete the link if required.

The following options are available under Add/Manage Your Top Level Links:


BE SURE TO CLICK SUBMIT AFTER YOU HAVE UPDATED YOUR COURSE PORTAL SETTINGS!

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Site Features

Course Roster/Group Email

Course rosters are available in 5 formats:
Photo View displays student name and photo. This is the default view (see below.)
Name View displays student name only.
Facebook View displays student name, photo, class, degree, hometown, and previous academic experiences. (Extended info. may not be available for all students.)
Credit View displays student name, class, degree, and number of credits earned for this course..
Enrollment History View includes all students enrolled in the selected course. Displays student name, class, degree, email address, photo and all courses the student has enrolled in at Penn Law.
Instructor Enrollment History View includes all students that have enrolled in a course with this instructor in A-Z order. Displays student name, class, degree, photo, and courses enrolled with this instructor. (this report is the same across all courses.)

Each view is available in Printable Mode which hides these instructions and the group email controls.

Rosters can also be exported to Excel. The spreadsheet will include all the information available in the Facebook View except for PennCard photos.

Group Email

How to send email to your students using the group email tool:
First, select students by clicking on their photos below. A red border will appear around each student selected.

Next, fill out your subject and message on the Course Portal Emailer form.

Note: You can also email your entire class using your class mailing list.

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Seating Charts

Online seating charts provide an easy way for students to choose seats or to receive assigned seats from the instructor. Online charts are available for courses that meet in the following rooms:

By default, all online seating charts are disabled. To enable your chart, click the [manage site] link for your course, select the seating chart tab, and choose "enable chart." A link for the seating chart link will appear on your Course Portal homepage. You will then be able to configure your seating chart settings to determine how the seats will be assigned, etc.

Enable Your Seating Chart

For more details on using the Seating Charts, please read the SEATING CHART HOW-TO.

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Discussion Board:

To activate the online discussion board for your class, select the "Active" button within the Discussion Board section of your Manage Site console, under Course Features. Once you select the option to make your board active, the two options for the board will become available. Select "Yes" if you would like to allow you students to edit and/or delete postings that they make to your course's discussion board. By default, both of these options are set to No.

Once you select the option to activate your board and click Submit, the option [Discussion Board] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You can begin to use the board immediately.

Note: You can make your board inactive at any time and you will not lose any comments posted to your board. Also, instructors may edit and/or delete any comment posted to their course's board. If a professor has assigned an additional site "Administrator" (see below), that administrator will have the same rights as the instructor and be able to edit/delete any posting. If an instructor has assigned an additional "Viewer", the viewer will have the same permissions as a student to the discussion board.

For more details on using the Discussion Board, please read the DISCUSSION BOARD HOW-TO.

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Course Evaluations

Most courses require students to fill out a course evaluation at the end of the term. There are 15 standard questions that are asked for every course. You may choose to add extra questions to any evaluation using the Question Editor. To access the Question Editor, click the [edit site] link for your course from the Course Portal homepage and scroll down to the Course Evaluation section. Click the Question Editor link to open up the tool.

In the left column of the Question Editor, you may add new questions. Select the type of the question (essay, choice, or percent). Type in the text of the question, then click "Add Question". In the right column are the questions you have already added. Clicking "Edit" will move a question back into the left column, where it may be changed and added again. You may also delete these questions, or rearrange their displayed order by clicking "Move Up/Down". Students will see these questions appended to their standard course evaluations, and may choose to answer them.

In addition to adding custom questions, faculty also have the option to select an alternate opening day for their course evaluations. If you would like to select an alternate opening day, enter in a date in the Opening Day box on your Manage Site page. Please be sure the Opening Day that you select falls within the dates specified.

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Grade Sheets

Depending on the format of your exam, you may download an anonymous grade sheet (by exam ticket number) or a standard grade sheet (by student name) for each course you are teaching. Grade sheets are in MS Excel format.

Once your course evaluation is open to your students, a link to download your grade sheet will appear on your Course Portal homepage. Click the link to access your grade sheets.

You will see links to both an anonymous and standard grade sheet. Click on the grade sheet you would like to download and save the file to your computer or network drive.

Enter your grades in the space provided. Once you have entered in all of the grades, please save and email your file as an attachment to the Registrar, Claire Wallace, at cwallac2@law.upenn.edu. NOTE: please do not change the file name. The Registrar will return your grade sheet with student names and exam numbers for your records.

Once your grades have been turned in to the Registrar's office, you will be able to view your evaluation results in the Course Portal. To view the results, click the [evaluation report] link on your Course Portal homepage.

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Document Dropbox

The Document Dropbox is a tool that allows students to upload files/assignments. Files are date/time stamped & available only to the instructor.

To activate the Document Dropbox for your class, select the "Active" button within the Document Dropbox section of your Manage Site console (under the Course Features tab.) Instructors will have the option to receive an email notification whenever a new file is uploaded to the dropbox.

Enable Dropbox

Once you select the option to activate your dropbox and click Submit, the option [document dropbox] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You and your students can begin to use the Dropbox immediately.

For more details on using the Document Dropbox, please read the DOCUMENT DROPBOX HOW-TO.

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Drop/Add List

The Drop/Add List displays a record of students who have dropped or added your course. The students are grouped by action (e.g. dropped or added the course) and the following information is displayed: student name, email address, date the course was dropped/added, and a photo (if available).

There is also an option to "View Text Only" -- which appears in the upper left hand area of the page. This allows you to view and sort the students by first name, last name, email address, or date the course was dropped/added by clicking on the column headings.

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Wiki

The Wiki is a tool that allows multiple users to quickly edit the content of a web page collectively. It provides the ability for versioning, which allows for corrections and retrieval of prior pages.

Some possible ways that a wiki can be used in the Course Portal include

To activate the Wiki for your class, select the "Active" button within the Wiki section of your Manage Site console (under the Course Features tab.)

Once you select the option to activate your wiki and click Submit, the option [Wiki] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You can begin to use the Wiki immediately.

For more details on using the Wiki, please read the WIKI HOW-TO.

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Media Requests

The Media Requests form allows faculty to select the instructional technology needed for their courses. There is one form for each course that the instructor is teaching. The form is divided into 2 sections: General Media Requests and Individual Course Meeting Requests.

Media Request Form Link

Individual Course Meeting Requests

The Individual Course Meeting Requests section shows all of the scheduled course meeting dates/times for this course. If a course meeting has been cancelled and rescheduled via the Registrar's office--the rescheduled meeting date/time will also appear on this form.

Instructors may use this form to specify their instructional technology needs for specific class meetings. For example, if you would like an individual course audio recorded, locate that course date and time and check the box next to Audio Recording. You may also specify any notes that you would like to submit to the ITS Media Team. If you selected 'Every Class' for a technology in the General Media Requests form above, that technology will be automatically selected for every class meeting date/time. To see descriptions for the various technologies, click the Question/Help icon. After making any changes, please be sure to click the 'Save Changes ' button directly below the form. IMPORTANT: Technology must be scheduled *before* the class starts.

Individual Course Meeting Requests

Media For Events

For events (non-courses), please use the Event Planning Request Form to request your media needs.

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Recordings Schedule

The Recordings Schedule page shows a schedule of all planned audio/video recordings for a course. If a recording has been made, it will also include a link to access the recording. This page is available to all enrolled students as well as anyone granted access to view/edit the course site.

Recordings Schedule

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Recordings

If your class has been audio or video recorded, a copy of the recording will be automatically posted on the Course Portal for your students to stream or download.

In the case of audio files, a podcast will also be available for students enrolled in your course. The podcast allows the students to automatically download all audio recordings posted for your course via their iPod or other device for easy listening.

Note: Before a student can subscribe to your course's podcast, you must first activate your podcast (see below.)

Before a user can access the "Recordings" page, they must first agree to the terms and agreements (see below.)

From the "Recordings" page, if podcasts are enabled, and no active recordings are assigned to your podcast, you will need to first populate your podcast before it can become available to your students.

To add an existing recording to your podcast, simply click the "Add To Podcast" button beside any "PUBLISHED" .mp3 recording (see below.)

NOTE: All newly published recordings will automatically be added to your podcast (if podcast active.)

Once the podcast has been populated, students will be provided with information and instructions on subscribing to your course's podcast (if available.)

NOTE: To remove an existing recording from your podcast, simply click the "Remove From Podcast" button beside any "PUBLISHED" .mp3 recording (see below.)

They will also be able to stream/download the audio and/or video recordings as required. Note: the recordings are organized by class meeting date.

Recordings can be set as either PUBLISHED or PRIVATE

PUBLISHED recordings are available to students. If you would like to make a published recording unavailable to all of the students in the class, use the "Make Private" button to move it to the private area.

PRIVATE recordings are NOT available to students by default. If you would like to make a private recording available to a student, use the "Send Email" button. This will allow you to enter in the student's email address and send them the private link. If you would like to make a private recording available to all students in the class, please use the "Publish File" button.

After clicking the "Send Email" button, for a private recording, you will be taken to a page with an auto generated email. Type in the student's email address and press send. The student will be sent a private link allowing them to view the recording.

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Appointment Scheduler

The Appointment Scheduler allows instructors to manage course related appointments in the Portal. Instructors can create various appointments and specify the date, time, capacity, and appointment type (e.g. office hours, faculty/student lunches, or various types of meetings.) Students can then login to the Portal to view the open appointments and sign-up.

Some possible ways that the Appointment Scheduler can be used in the Course Portal include

To activate the Appointment Scheduler for your class, select the "Active" button within the Appointment Scheduler section of your Manage Site console (under the Course Features tab). By default, the name that will appear at the top of the appointment scheduler will be the course name and course ID.

Enable Appointment Scheduler

You may wish to use the same appointment scheduler for multiple courses (e.g. for scheduling all your office hours). To do this, enable the appointment scheduler for one of the courses as described above. When you enable the appointment scheduler for other concurrent courses, you will have the option of creating a new appointment scheduler, or sharing a current appointment scheduler:

Enable Shared Appointment Scheduler

Once you select the option to activate your Appointment Scheduler and click Submit, the option [Appointment Scheduler] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You can begin to use the Appointment Scheduler immediately.

Course Portal homepage - faculty view

For more details on using the Appointment Scheduler, please read the APPOINTMENT SCHEDULER HOW-TO.

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Classroom Surveys

The Classroom Surveys tool (sometimes referred to as a Classroom or Audience Response System) allows instructors to poll their students during class and receive the results immediately (both numeric and graphic) via the Portal. Students login to the Portal using their laptops to submit their response. The results can then be made available to the entire class to view and discuss. Instructors can run ad hoc surveys on the fly or create the questions ahead of time and deploy them during class.

To activate the Classroom Surveys tool for your class, select the "Active" button within the Classroom Surveys section of your Manage Site console (under the Course Features tab) and click submit.

Classroom Response System link

The option [classroom surveys] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You can begin to use the application immediately by clicking on the link, which will open in a new window.

Classroom Response System link

For more details on using Classroom Surveys, please read the CLASSROOM SURVEYS INSTRUCTOR HOW-TO.

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Textbook Lists

The Textbook Lists include all textbooks submitted by faculty via the Course Planner. If you need to make a change to your textbook list for your course, please contact Robin Harris at rharris2@law.upenn.edu.

Textbook Lists

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new Blog

Blog is short for the term 'web log.' It is a web site where entries are made in journal style and are displayed in reverse chronological order (most-recent first). It also includes an option to allow users to post comments to existing entries.

To activate the blog for your class, select the "Active" button within the Blog section of your Manage Site console, under the Course Features tab. Once you select the option to make your blog active, the three options for the blog will become available.


Once you select the option to activate your blog and click Submit, the option [Blog] will appear on your Portal homepage (see below) and in your course's left menu. You can begin to use the blog immediately.

For more details on using the Blog, please read the BLOG HOW-TO.

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new Student Profile Cards

Student profile cards are 3 x 5 cards that are generated by the Course Portal. This reulting file is formatted to work with the Avery 5388 template (available from ITSHelp or FSSHelp). You can also print out to a standard letter-size 8.5x11 page. These cards can be populated with either student information already in the Course Portal or with additional questions to be filled in by the student themselves (after the cards are printed.)

How do print student profile cards for my course?

The option Profile Cards will appear on your Portal homepage and in your course's left menu (see below).


Selecting student information and additional questions:

Use the checkboxes to select the information you would like to display on the student profile cards. The options are:

You can also add up to 4 additional questions that can be answered by the student (after the cards are printed.) Use the input areas below the checkboxes to enter your questions. There is a 35 character limit to allow for space for the student to enter answers. Any questions left blank will not show on the printed card.
When you have finished selecting your fields and entering questions, click the submit button. The information you entered will be saved.

Printing cards for all students in a class:

By default, you can print cards for every student in the class. To do this, click the "Generate Cards" button.

Selecting specific students to print cards for:

If you do not need to print profile cards for all students in a class, uncheck the "All students" checkbox. A list of all students in a class will be displayed. Check the students you want profile cards for and click the "Generate Cards" button at the bottom of the screen.


Printing cards:

A PDF of all the student profile cards generated will appear on the screen. To print, click on the print icon in the upper left hand corner of the display area. If you are printing to Avery #5388 perforated cards then load the cardstock in your printer before printing.


Class Mailing Lists

Sending Mail to your Classlist

How do I Send Email to my Class?

There are two ways of sending email to your class. You may either use your preferred email client, or the Course Portal Emailer Tool.

Using Your Preferred Email Client:

You can email all of the students in your class by sending an email to your classlist. Classlist names follow the format of: LAW###-###-###@law.upenn.edu where the #'s are replaced by the course number, section number, year and term letter (year is 06 and spring term letter is "A").

A valid listname for a 2006 spring semester course number 999, section 001 would be: LAW999-001-06A@LAW.UPENN.EDU. Note: in order to send to your list using this method, you must send the message from your Penn Law email account (or manually add an additional account using the class list administrator -- more info. below.)

Using the Email the Classlist Link (Emailer Tool):

To send an email to your classlist using the Emailer Tool, simply select the "Email the Classlist" link from the left menu of the course site, or from the link below the course title on your Portal homepage.

You can compose an email to the classlist by entering the email's subject in the subject field, and the body of the message in the message field. If you would like to attach a file with the email, click on the browse button in the attachments section, select the file you would like to send, and click the "Attach File" button. This must be done before the message is sent.

When you are ready to send your email, click the "Send Email" button.

Important guidelines for Law School class mailing lists:

new Email Drafts Feature (Emailer Tool)

When you use the Course Portal's built in email system, a copy of your email will be saved as a draft every 60 seconds. You may also save a draft at any time by clicking on the Save Draft button. At the top of the email screen, you can see the time your email was last saved. If you need to leave an email and come back to it, you can load the email by clicking the Load Draft button. You can remove unsent drafts by clicking the Delete icon. By default, only drafts that have NOT been sent are listed. You can use the Show Both Sent/UnSent Drafts to include drafts that have been sent. Note that you cannot delete drafts that have been sent, but you can load, edit, and re-send them. Note: Drafts do not include attachments--so you will need to attach your file(s) again before sending.

Saved Drafts

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Classlist Admin

You can manage your Classlist within the Classlist Admin section of the Manage Site console.

Senders: By default, all members of a classlist will be able to send mail to the list. If you would like to change this option so that only Classlist administrators can send to the list, select Administrators Only from the Senders box.

Reply: All replies to a message are sent to the original author of the message only. Use the "Reply to All" or "Group Reply" option in your email client to reply to both the original sender and the entire classlist.

Membership Controls: Enrolled students are automatically members of your class mailing list. If you would like to add an additional member (or email address) that can send and/or receive mail to the list, use the Add a New Member option. To view and manage the current members of your Classlist, use the View, Manage, and Delete Current Members option.

When adding a new member or email address to your Classlist, you will be required to include their email address and select whether the member should receive mail or be a classlist administrator. The LawKey Username and Name fields are optional but are helpful when managing/viewing your current list membership.

Within the View, Manager & Delete Members section, you will be able to view all list members. Members are grouped by category (e.g. whether they are a list administrator, have been added via the Web interface, or if they are enrolled student.) You can use this interface to delete administrators or members added via the Web. You will not be able to delete enrolled students. Note: If an enrolled student drops your course, they will automatically be removed from your list. You can also change whether a member should send or receive mail.

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Classlist Archives

Each Class Mailing List will be archived within the Course Portal so enrolled students and faculty can view the messages sent to the list as well as any attachments. A link to the Classlist Archive will appear on your Portal homepage and in your course's left menu (see below.)

Messages are sorted by default with the most recent at the top. To sort by subject, sender, or number of attachments, click the column heading. Click on the From address in the Message Details box to reply to the sender or click the Group Reply link to reply to the entire Classlist.

To navigate the messages, click on the subject of a message to read the message or use the Next and Previous links in the Actions pane to move through the messages.

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Registrar's Archive

Instructors will see a special link in the left menu of the Course Portal for the Registrar's Archive.

Registrar's Archive

This archive will include course related emails sent by the Registrar's office to instructors.

To navigate the messages, click on the subject of a message to read the message or use the Next and Previous links in the Actions pane to move through the messages.

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If you have additional questions, please contact the ITS Help Desk at itshelp@law.upenn.edu or 898-9140.