Aula Update – 22nd January 2021

This is the fourth update on the Aula platform.  It highlights recent changes to Aula, forthcoming changes and responses to recent queries that have been raised.  A reminder that information on Aula’s development plans are available via the Product Portal at https://portal.aula.education/tabs/3-launched.  This site can be used to propose ideas and also vote on planned developments.

Recently launched changes

Pinning posts in the feed

Important posts can now be ‘pinned’ at the top of the feed in the Community area.  Educators can select a post to be ‘pinned’ using the three-dot menu in the top right hand corner on a post.  Once selected the post will remain at the top of the feed for 72 hours.  The five most recent ‘pinned’ posts stay listed in a new window to the right of the feed, from where it is also possible to view all ‘pinned’ posts.

This feature replaces the ‘important’ posts feature.  It is only possible for Educators to pin and unpin posts.

Aula Helpdesk article – https://aula.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360018132639-Pinned-Posts

View only staff role

Aula has had only two roles Student and Educator.  This has meant that when access was required for administrative purposes staff were added as Educators leading to a large number in individual Aula spaces.  A new role providing authorised staff with view only access has now been created and will be rolled out across the University Groups Aula spaces.  This will reduce the number of Educators in individual Aula spaces.  https://portal.aula.education/c/33-who-are-all-these-educators-in-my-space

Forthcoming changes

Changes that are forthcoming include:

  • Student Engagement insights: will provide data showing levels of student activity, in terms of access to Aula spaces and posting/commenting.  This feature will provide high-level data enabling Aula space owners to see overall levels of activity over time.  For individual students it will show date of last access.  This release, expected soon, is the first phase with more detailed engagement data to be available in the future.  https://portal.aula.education/c/43-engagement-insights

Recent queries

Requirement to update LTI plugin links in semester two Aula spaces

It has come to light that LTI plugin links, originally created in semester one Aula spaces, which have been copied across to semester two Aula spaces do not work for students in these new spaces.  Therefore, any LTI plugin (this includes Planet eStream, Tallis, Echo) will need to be deleted and recreated in the semester two Aula space.

The copied across links, in the semester two spaces, do work for users who have access to both the semester one and semester two space; so this issue may not be immediately obvious to module leaders. 

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