Wednesday, 29 August 2012

LearnUCS: Enrolments for 12/13 released

For your information, the enrolments for the 12/13 academic year have been released. As you are aware, these enrolments are driven by the student record system. Therefore, if you have any questions about enrolments, either students are on, or are not on the correct course, the best starting place is a quick chat with your Course Administrator.

Monday, 20 August 2012

Online submission, Safe Assign & LearnUCS

We have been in contact with Blackboard to discuss our SafeAssign issues. The current situation is they are working on the solution and we are waiting for a resolution. They have not been helpful in terms of giving us a timeframe. As mentioned in previous updates this is not just affecting on UCS.

The current situation is,

  • The SafeAssign tool is not available in LearnUCS.

  • All submission of assignments in LearnUCS will be managed (as previously planned) using the LearnUCS Assignment Tool

The first point to make is the work submitted to SafeAssign has not been deleted, and it can be retrieved.

So who should staff talk to about online submission at UCS?

  • If you are arranging a new student submission point or re-open a submission point you need to talk to your Course Administrator. Their role is changing to include the administration of online submission. They will set the submission point up, and discuss how to manage the process.

  • If you need to access student work submitted to SafeAssign in Wolsey, you need to talk to your Course Administrator. They (or a member of Academic Support) will be able to download the assignments, and forward to you for marking.

  • If your wish to upload student feedback files to LearnUCS for work students have submitted you need to talk to your course administrator who will support you through the creation of area in LearnUCS gradebook and uploading the files.

  • If you need to access previous plagiarism reports please contact your Course Administrator.

The Elevate Team are working closely with the Academic Support Team to standardise the processes and ensure the above works.

The shifting role of the Course Administrator for online submission, and the move away from using SafeAssign as a direct submission tool and towards using the Assignment Tool as the longer term solution has been agreed previously and been discussed at the Learning, Teaching and Assessment Group. The current situation with Safe Assign has meant we’ve accelerated this plan from September 2012 to August 2012.

If you do have any questions, although we have suggested you contact your Course Administrator, please do email the Elevate Team ( Sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Wednesday 15th SafeAssign Update

We are currently still waiting on contact from BlackBoard regarding the SafeAssign issue, the specific maintenance that is required was scheduled in Washington DC so we do have a slight timezone difference we have to work with. The Elevate Team will update further as soon as we have more information regarding a solution.

Monday, 13 August 2012

LearnUCS Monday 13th - Update

We are currently still waiting on BlackBoard to resolve this SafeAssign issue, we are hopeful this will be complete before Wednesday, at which point an announcement will go out confirming resolution. The new LearnUCS seems to be stable and the change over from Wolsey has gone very well with few bugs to iron out, which is handy.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

LearnUCS - Release of 2012/13 Modules

Just a quick update to the upgrade/migration of LearnUCS.

We have now released the 2012/13 modules, these are available for lecturers to request access to.  This can be done in the same way as previously, filling in the form located at the following link:

Request Module Enrolment

The form request is sent to your Course Administrator.

This year the modules are created as "Unavailable" meaning student won't access empty modules, once there are materials/content added you can make the module "Available", giving access to your students.










Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Important: Are you using Safe Assign to manage your student submissions?


Due to a scheduling problem from Blackboard Hosting they are unable to roll out the Safe Assign tool, with LearnUCS. Currently, Blackboard have given us a date for completion of the 14th August.

Therefore, we have had to disable the Safe Assign tool in LearnUCS until this work is completed. The following describes the process of managing the submission, marking, grading and return of assignments for those expecting to use the Safe Assign tool upto the 14th August.

What do academic staff need to do?

The starting point is contact your Course Administrator or Academic Support. They will be managing the submission points and can liaise with you about downloading work, returning grades etc.,

There are a number of factors which influence your choices about what to do.

  • are you using the Safe Assign submission route? If No (using Assignment Manager) nothing has changed. If yes, contact your course administrator

  • can you wait until after the 14th August? If yes, do nothing. If No, contact your Course Administrator

The following is for your information to make you aware of how we are managing the following scenarios. As mentioned previously, you should contact your Course Administrator.


  • Students submitting work to LearnUCS

  • Staff accessing work for marking

  • Staff uploading grades / feedback to gradebook

  • Access for external examiners

Students submitting work to LearnUCS

Submission will need to go through the Blackboard Assignment Manager. Therefore, all new submissions points will be created by the Course Administrator(s). Teaching staff will need to liaise with their Course Administrator.

If the SafeAssign point has been created (based on the list from Academic Support), the course administrator will create a new submission point for students. If student work has been submitted previously the Elevate Team will manually migrate this across.

The student experience will be very similar, the process of submitting is nearly identical.

Staff accessing work for marking

Staff who need access to material submitted to Safe Assign, will need to contact Elevate Team ( who will download the submissions. After which they will share with staff either via (1) email or (2) dropbox depending on the size.

Staff uploading grades / feedback to gradebook

The key determinant is can you wait until after the 14th August? If yes, wait. If not, you (academic staff) will need to forward the feedback files and unratified grades to the individual students. Once Safe Assign is back online then can upload grades and files.

If you have already uploaded the grades and feedback to Safe Assign, and you haven’t a local copy you need to contact your Course Administrator to arrange for them to be exported from Safe Assign.

Access for external examiners

The key determinant is can you wait until after the 14th August? If yes, wait. If not, you need to share a sample via (1) email or (2) dropbox. The best place is to contact your Course Administrator.

If you have any questions about the above, please email the Elevate Team (

Monday, 6 August 2012

LearnUCS live, but we are waiting for SafeAssign

The Elevate Team are happy to announce the migration and upgrade of the Virtual Learning Environment has nearly been completed. We have released the new version, which is available from

The previous version under the Wolsey brand is being redirected to LearnUCS. We would ask people to to start changing their Wolsey related bookmarks.

Unfortunately, due to unforeseen problems at the Blackboard Hosting end, they have not been able to map our SafeAssign submissions to the new modules. Therefore, at the moment we have disabled the SafeAssign Tool. This means staff will need to create their submission points using the Blackboard Assignment Manager. If staff wish to access the work submitted by students last week (week commencing the 30th July), please contact the Elevate Team, and we’ll zip them up for you. Students will not be able to submit work in existing SafeAssign submission areas.

We are expecting progress by Blackboard on this issue, including a new timeline, within the next few hours. This has been escalated at their end. We do apologise for the inconvenience this is causing.

If you have any questions, please email the Elevate Team (

BUMP update ... slower than expected

Hi, this is just to inform you Blackboard in Amsterdam have been slower in the restore of the final set of courses we sent them this morning. Therefore, we've are waiting for these to be restored on the system before we can release it. Another issue is their Operations Team is having problems with the certificates, so at the moment when you go to you encounter a certificate warning. This should disappear this afternoon.

So all very frustrating, and we hope to have this sorted by later this afternoon.

Sorry for the inconvenience this is causing. If you have any questions, please email


Day 6 BUMP Update

Well, today is the day :-) We'll be making the switch over from Wolsey to LearnUCS. Therefore, both systems will be unavailable during the morning period. We are hoping to have the new system (LearnUCS) online by about 13.00 hours on the 6th August.

Friday, 3 August 2012

Day 5 BUMP Update ...

Well the week is nearly over, and we've been making good progress :-)

I'm glad to say we have signed off our stage 1 user testing. As mentioned in yesterday's update you may encounter problems with respect to the permanent links point to the previous system (Wolsey). So you might have some broken links to mend. Also, it appears a few embedded images have not come across. However, there is no obvious pattern to indicate a failure in the migration and restore process. When you next access your course areas on LearnUCS please contact us if anything appears missing.

We are in the final stages of testing and scheduling the integration with active directory, to upload students, staff, modules and enrollment. This is progressing well and should be signed off by mid afternoon.

The focus of today will be on finishing the student FAQs, and the final communications ready for Monday.

If you have any questions, please email

Thursday, 2 August 2012

LearnUCS (Wolsey) unavailable on Monday 6th August AM

As the final stage in the LearnUCS upgrade and migration project we will be switching to the new LearnUCS on Monday 6th August.

This will require the systems to be offline, while we (Elevate Team), UCS IT Services, and Blackboard make the final changes. The timings for the final stage are outlined below, however, the headline news is

Wolsey & LearnUCS will not be available between 6.00 AM and approximately 13.00 (1 PM) on Monday 6th August, 2012.
The downtime is due to us having to archive, migrate, restore and test about 30 modules which have been using Wolsey for online submission during the week starting 30th July. After this process has been completed, Blackboard are required to run two critical updates to re-map student submitted work to the Gradebook and SafeAssign.

We are sorry for any inconvenience this causes, but it is the best way to minimise the downtime given the need to coordinate work across three teams.

If you have any questions, please email us at

Implementation Plan: Monday 6th August

6.00 AM

  • Elevate: Remove login to Wolsey & LearnUCS

  • Elevate: Archive list of changed courses since 30th July

  • Elevate: Transfer to Blackboard

  • Blackboard: Start restoring

9.00 AM

  • ITS: Re-direct the tab in MyUCS to holding announcement / page

10.00 AM

  • ITS: roll out the URL redirect from to

By 12.00 (midday)

  • Blackboard: Complete restore

  • Elevate: Sign off

  • Elevate: Give go ahead to Blackboard runs scripts

12.00 (midday)

  • Blackboard: Run Gradebook Script

  • Blackboard: Start SafeAssign re-mapping

Day 4 BUMP Update ….

Yesterday we signed off stage one of the migration. All the modules (courses) we expected have migrated across and been restored. We have now started the UAT (user testing) of the content. We do this through a set of stages, which build on each other in complexity.

The first stage was fine, courses have been rebuilt under the correct naming conventions.

A couple of observations (which we expected) if you've have been using absolute links within courses, these will not work (as the urls have changed). The Learning Objects tools (wiki, blog and podcast) have been disabled for new activities, but if you have used them previously you'll be able to see, edit them.

Today, we'll be continuing the next stages of the user testing, and coordinating with Blackboard about the work on Monday 6th.

Please note, Monday 6th August, will involve some downtime, where LearnUCS & Wolsey will not be available. This is because we need to migrate and restore the courses which have changed since the 30th July, and Blackboard need to complete two really important tasks. These tasks will map the new system to student submitted work in SafeAssign and the Gradebook.

Blackboard are not sure how long this will take, therefore, we are expecting the system to be unavailable for the morning (up to 13.00). We'll be releasing a specific post on the systen availability soon.

If you have any questions, please email

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Day 3 BUMP Update

Day 3 BUMP Update ….

Yesterday was one of those frustrating days, with lots of waiting around on communications, updates from Blackboard. However, it now appears all the course material (content) has migrated across to the new system. Therefore, we'll be able to start testing to ensure it has all migrated across properly. This testing will start either today or Thursday.

The testing will depend on progress with the integration scripts with Active Directory and Student Records. This should be finished today, and passed across to the Elevate Team.

The login page has been finished and should be transferred today.

If you have any questions, please email