Creating and Updating Course Pages

 

To create and maintain a Colby course page, please contact Mel Regnell, x4217 or Mel.Regnell, who will create the site(s) for your course(s).  Each course will have its own site.

 

 

The top section of each course page displays the course description, schedule, location and faculty information for the course.  This information comes from the database records.  If any corrections need to be made, please contact the Registrar’s Office.

 

Also displayed at the top of each course page is a link bar with links to the different sections of your page.  This is automatically generated from the selections you make and the titles you give the different sections of your page.

 

Creating and Updating a Course Page

Once your site has been created and configured, navigate to it on Colby’s authoring server.  The URL for authoring your page will start with http://author.colby.edu/academics_cs/courses/, followed by the course number and section, if applicable, (i.e. BI271, EN115A, etc.) and ending with index.cfm.

 

You will need to log in to CommonSpot by clicking on the word LOGIN in the upper right hand corner and authenticating using your Colby login and password.

 

At the top of the page, you will see the three CommonSpot icons.  If you see only two, check to be sure you are on the author server (author.colby.edu) and not the production server (www.colby.edu).

  1. Switch to Author mode by clicking on the center icon (View Modes) and selecting Author.
  2. Click on the right hand icon (Page & Template Management) and select Page Properties.
  3. At the bottom of the Page Properties window, click on Next.
  4. The Custom Page Information Window will open.  There are 6 tabs on the page:
    • Course - used to change the session and year for a course.
    • Content - where you will update the content of the left column in the content well.
    • Resources - where you will update the content of the right column of the content well.
    • Other - for linking to a syllabus elsewhere and selecting an image to display at the top of the right column in the content well.
    • Page Attributes - not used.
    • Developer - not used.

Instructions for creating and changing information on these tabs are below.

  1. Once you have made the changes on the appropriate tabs, click on Finish at the bottom of the window.

Your changes will be published automatically.

 

 

The COURSE Tab

 

On this tab, you may select the session and when your course will be offered.  The options are FA (fall), SP (spring) or JP (JanPlan).

  1. Select the appropriate session from the drop down menu.
  2. Enter the year the course will be offered. 

NOTE:  These settings control which students have access to your page.  The students on the roster for the session and year listed here will be the students who can view your page.  These settings should only be changed when the semester changes.


The CONTENT Tab

 

On this tab, you can select whether or not an assignment section shows at the top of your course page, and you can define and enter content into up to six sections in the left column of the content well, as well as determine who can view that section.

 

Assignments

  1. At the top of the Content tab is the Assignments section.  If you want to have an assignments section appear at the top of your course page, check the box by the word Assignments.
  2. Then select who you would like to be able to view the assignments list.  In the Viewable By drop-down menu, you may select Anyone, Colby Accounts or Instructors and Students.

NOTE:  If you choose to make any sections of your page viewable by Colby Accounts or Instructors and Students, those users must be logged in to CommonSpot (via the word  LOGIN in the upper corner of every Colby web page) in order to see that section.

To add or change the list of assignments, after you have finished your changes, you will need to be either in Read mode on the author server (author.colby.edu), or go to the page on the production server (www.colby.edu).

  1. Any instructor for the course will see a form where they can enter information for a new assignment.  The fields are:
    • Due Date - the date the assignment is due.  This is a required field.
    • Display Date - the date when an assignment will begin displaying.  If this field is left blank, the assignment will be displayed immediately after you submit the form.
    • Title - a short title for the assignment.  This is a required field.
    • Description - an area for a short description of the assignment.  This is optional.
    • URL - a URL for the assignment.  This is optional.
    • Category – you may select a category for the assignment (lecture, homework, exam, etc.)
  1. When you have entered the information for the assignment, click on Submit.  The assignment will then appear in the list of assignments.
  2. As the instructor for the course, you will see the list of assignments displayed with a delete and edit button beside each assignment.  Click on either of these to delete assignments from the list, or make changes to existing assignments.

Sections 1 – 6

 

Below the Assignments check box are six text block sections that you may use to display different types of information.  You may add text, links, images, and tables. 

 

Here are clickable links to instructions on how to add text, links, images or tables.

  1. For each section you wish to use, enter
    • a Title - a header for the section.  This will display in a different color and larger size font.
    • the text section - the content of your section, which may be copied and pasted from existing documentation. 
    • a selection in the Viewable By drop-down menu.  (Again, if you select any option other than viewable by anyone, those users need to login to see that section.)

The Resources Tab

 

On this tab, you can select whether or not to display an uploaded documents section and you can define and enter content in up to four different sections in the right column of the content well, as well as determine who can view that section.

 

Uploaded Documents

  1. At the top of the Resources tab is the Uploaded Documents section.  If you want to have a list of uploaded documents appear at the top of the right column of your course page, check the box by the words Uploaded Documents.
  2. Then select who you would like to be able to view the list of uploaded documents (Anyone, Colby Accounts or Instructors and students).

For instructions on how to upload a document, click here. 

 

Resources 1 – 4

 

Below the Upload Documents check box are four textblock sections that you may use to display different types of information.  You may add text, tables, images, and links. 

  1. For each section you wish to use, enter
    • a Title - a header for the section.  This will display in a different color and larger size font.
    • the text section - the content of your section, which may be copied and pasted from existing documentation. 
    • a selection in the Viewable By drop-down menu.  (Again, if you select any option other than viewable by anyone, those users need to login to see that section.)

 

The Other Tab

 

On this tab, you may link to a syllabus located on another page and select an image to display at the top of the right column.

 

Syllabus

  1. In the Syllabus URL box, enter the URL for the page where your syllabus is located.
  2. Then select who you would like to be able to view the URL on your course page (Anyone, Colby Accounts or Instructors and students).

 

Miscellaneous Information

 

In this section, you may select an image to be displayed at the top of the right column on your course page.  The image will be scaled to a width of 200 pixels.

  1. To select or change an image to be displayed, click on Select Image. 
  2. An Image Properties window will open.
  3. Click on Gallery.
  4. The Image Gallery Search box will open. 
  5. Find the image you want to display and click on it.  (Click below for more detailed instructions.)
  6. Click on OK.  You will be returned to the Other tab.

For instructions on selecting an image from the image gallery, click here.

 

When you have added or updated the desired information, click on Finish.

 

NOTE:  Each tab has a Check Spelling box at the bottom (including the tabs for page attributes and developer).  This box is checked by default.  If you do not wish to have the spelling on your page checked, unclick the box on each tab, or when the Spell Checking window opens, click on Close to stop spell checking.  (If you click on Cancel, it stops the whole update process and will bring you back to the Custom Information window and you will need to click Finish again to submit your changes.)