August 2014 Archives

Summer SIRS Results Distributed

SIRS results for summer courses were emailed out to instructors last Tuesday, August 19th. If you taught a course, please check your email including your "spam" or "junk" folders to find your results.

Department administrators can retrieve the full collection of results for their department from dropboxes in Sakai  - . We may need to update our records to reflect personnel changes in your department, so if you do not find a dropbox please contact us. 

Please save your SIRS results for future reference. CTAAR does not save the student comments, and we will delete the files from the Sakai dropboxes before the end of the year. 

Digital Classroom Services has upgraded the Blu-ray/DVD players in many classrooms in New Brunswick in order to improve reliability, and to enable the use of international Blu-ray and DVD disks. 

If you plan to show a DVD or Blu-ray disc in your class, please take a moment to review the new instructions for using the Blu-ray drives. This is especially important if you are using a disc from a country or region other than the U.S.

Sakai was updated on Thursday, August 21, from Sakai 2.9 to Sakai 10 (technically it's Sakai "2 point 10" but numerically that is the same as 2.1, so they just  call it 10). 

There are lots of bug fixes and a few new features. OIRT has an overview of the improvements on the Sakai New Features page, or you can look at the full list of new features at the Aprero Sakai 10 Release Notes page. 
Rutgers Library Data Services has scheduled their Fall semester workshops on several statistical software packages, including SPSS, SAS, Stata and R.

  • Intro to R [3 parts - stats, graphics, data manipulation]  (Sept 9, 16, 23)
  • Intro to SPSS     (Sept 11)
  • Intro to Stata    (Sept 18)
  • Intro to SAS       (Oct 2)

Workshop materials and recordings of previous workshops are posted at the Library Data Services web page,

eCollege (Pearson) New Features

The Division of Continuing Studies has posted a list of new features that have been recently added to the eCollege (Pearson Learning Studio) system.  New features include a math & equation editor, an iPad app, and a new threaded audio/video discussion tool.

The full list of new features is on the DoCS eCollege Updates in 2014 page. 

eCollege is primarily used by fully online courses, but is available as an alternative to Sakai or Blackboard for any Rutgers course. 
Sakai will be unavailable  on August 21 while OIRT upgrades the software to Sakai 10

In addition, the ScarletMail "landing" page will not be available due to other work in OIT, however this is just an information page, and ScarletMail will continue to work. If you need to log in to ScarletMail you can go straight to and use your Rutgers Scarletmail address to log in (leave the password blank, you'll be taken to the usual Rutgers login page). 
Update on August 18 - It appears that Rutgers OIT has disabled access to the new Google Classroom service. At the moment, trying to use this with your Scarletmail account will result in a "service unavailable" message. If your department uses Google Apps for Education on its own, you may be able to access the service using your departmental email address (ask your department IT person if you're not sure). 


Google has announced that they will make their new "Classroom" tool available beginning the week of August 11th. This service combines existing Google services (primarily gmail and drive) into an organized structure designed for classroom use. Teachers who use Google Classroom will be able to distribute materials, collect and grade assignments, and communicate with their students easily.  This provides another alternative to systems like Sakai, eCollege, Blackboard and Moodle (however Google classroom does not appear to have an online testing or gradebook tool, at least not yet). 

When it becomes available, you will need to use your ScarletMail account if you wish to use it. (Rutgers OIT has the option to disable the service, if they choose to do that it may be necessary to contact them to turn it on for your account). 

More information and videos describing how the service works are available on the Google Classroom introduction page, and instructions for how to use it are available on the Google Classroom Help site.

Ratings Surveys for Summer Courses

The final round of Student Instructional Rating Surveys for summer courses began today (August 4) and will conclude on August 12. Any instructors who have not had surveys for their summer course should contact us to set up a survey as soon as possible (please consult the full list of current surveys first to see if the survey already ran) to set up a survey before the summer session ends. 

Students can go to to complete their surveys.

SIRS results will be distributed to faculty and departments on August 20th or shortly afterwards (OIT sometimes maintains systems during this week, we may delay distribution to avoid any problems). 

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2014 listed from newest to oldest.

July 2014 is the previous archive.

September 2014 is the next archive.

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