We welcomed 2006 with some significant updates to the site that affect how writers work with the materials they've saved in their Writing Studio accounts and how teachers and students use the Writing Studio class pages.
No More "Portfolios," Manage Your Work Using "Folders" Writers can now organize their work in folders, a more intuitive system for storing, organizing, and managing work completed using the Writing Studio Tools, (such as Drafts, Working Bibliography & Notes, etc.). This replaces the previous system, which used "portfolios."
Each writer is automatically given a main "Your Work" folder, as well as the opportunity to create, name, and fill other folders. You can access the main folder page by going to "Your Writing" from the top Writing Studio Menu and selecting "View Your Work." Writers can access any of their work saved to the Writing Studio directly from these folders. Writers can also manage work within any folder (moving work to another folder, deleting and/or updating it) simply by opening a folder and clicking on the "Manage This Folder" link.
Class Pages Updates:
File Folder and Group File Folders: We've also updated these areas to reflect the new folder structure and management options. Teachers and students enrolled in a Writing Studio class can upload, store, share, and download a variety of files in these areas.
Web Links: Updates to this area enable you to organize links into folders. This gives you the opportunity to add a link to a main list which is not in a folder, put a link in a folder by adding it or moving it, create new folders for links, and change the folders display order.
Cloning: You can now create copies or "clones" of any of your classes, which should be helpful to those of you teaching multiple sections of the same class, either during the same session or over the course of consecutive semesters. When cloning a class, you can list yourself as the instructor for the new class; you can assign another person to be the instructor; or you can assign another person as instructor and list yourself as a co-instructor. All of the basic information for the class can be copied. Optionally, you can select only the specific materials you want to copy. Please note that the class roster, class blogs, co-instructors, and class groups will not be copied to the new class.
Importing: You can use this option to import various materials, (such as your "Assignments" or "Web Links"), or an entire calendar (with all its entries) from another class.
Gradebook: An upgrade to the class gradebook gives instructors the ability to organize assignments into categories and assign an overall grade to that category. This is useful for homework, in-class work, small group projects, and so on.
Calendar: An update to the calendar "add entry" function allows for faster processing times when adding a new entry.
Blogs You can now create as many blogs as you'd like. Instead of being linked to a specific folder, Blogs are organized in one main area, which you can view by going to "Your Blogs." As always, you can use a Blog as a private journal, share a Blog with one or more of your Writing Studio classes, and/or publish a Blog in the Writing@CSU Writing Gallery.
Ideas Tool A new option in the ideas tool lets you link selected ideas together and access a page where you can view only the ideas that are linked.
Another Help System Revision Once again, we've updated the Help pages to reflect the most current changes to the site. You can view brief Flash video tutorials that illustrate how to carry out typical tasks.
As always, we hope that these changes will make our site easier to use and, ultimately, help our visitors become better writers. If you have any comments or suggestions, please don't hesitate to contact us.