General D2L

  • D2L Two-Minute Overview
    A brief description of what D2L is, what it can do, and how you can get help with it.

  • Five Things to Do to Get Started
    Logging in to D2L, accessing your courses, viewing your classlist, uploading a syllabus, and posting a news item.

  • Accessing Courses   -   PDF
    How to login in to Desire2Learn, access your courses, and pin courses that are used often

  • Understanding the Navigation Bar   -   PDF
    An explanation of all the default links in the Navigation Bar

  • Importing course content   -   PDF
    How to copy all course materials from one class to another, how to select specific items to copy, and information about editing various parameters of the import process

  • Exporting course content   -   PDF
    How to export all course content, select individual items for export, and save a ZIP archive of all course content to your computer as a backup

  • Groups   -   PDF
    How to create class groups and have students automatically enrolled in them

  • Enrolling students in groups manually   -   PDF
    How to re-name student groups, how to enroll students in a single group, and how to manage multiple group enrollments at once

  • Homepages   -   PDF
    How to create and edit a landing page for your course in D2L, and how to add and organize various widgets on your homepage

  • Navigation Bars   -   PDF
    How to add internal D2L links to your course navigation bar, how to remove links you do not want, and how to add links to external websites

  • Using Intelligent Agents Part 1   -   PDF
    An explanation of what Intelligent Agents are and how to use them to automate communications with your students, as well as basic instructions on creating your own Intelligent Agent

  • Using Intelligent Agents Part 2   -   PDF
    How to specify a schedule for your Intelligent Agents, how to construct an email template, and how to use special strings to customize the email

  • Using Student View   -   PDF
    How to view your class from the perspective of a student, in order to double check that everything is set up properly and release conditions are working

  • Subscribing to Course Updates   -   PDF
    How to have your students get automatically notified when various activities take place (post news items, update content, etc.) within your course

  • Posting News Updates   -   PDF
    How to use the News widget to post news updates for your class, how to enrich your news updates with images, and how to specify start and end dates for a given news item

  • Creating a Chat Session   -   PDF
    How to create a Chat session, and an explanation of some of the benefits of using this type of interaction with your students

  • Chat Settings   -   PDF
    How to specify various personal settings for a Chat such as your Alias, font style and color, and sounds

  • Hosting a Chat Session   -   PDF
    A realtime demonstration of what it looks like to host a Chat session for your students

  • Viewing Chat Transcripts   -   PDF
    How to view the transcript from a given chat session, and how to print it or save as a PDF

  • Using the Classlist option
    How to view a list of all your students, how to break the list down by Group or Section, and how to see progress reports for every student in class

  • Emailing your Classlist with the BCC Option
    How to send an email to all your students using the Blind Carbon Copy option so students cannot see each other's email addresses, and ensure against students hitting "Reply All" and spamming the entire class with unnecessary email

  • Adding a TA to Your Class
    How to add a TA to help administer your class, upload and manage course files, and enter grades. Also, an explanation of the differences between Course Builder, TA Level 1, and TA Level 2.

  • Enrolling a TA in Multiple Sections of a Combined Course   -   PDF
    How to give your TAs access to all sections of a course that was combined either in SIS by the instructor, or by ITLE.

  • Using the Links Tool (Part 1)   -   PDF
    An overview of the Links tool and how it can benefit you and your students, how to create Categories, and how to put links into various Categories

  • Using the Links Tool (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to give your students access to your Links library using the Navigation Bar, and how to add a widget to display your Links on your Course Homepage

  • Embedding Twitter Widgets in Your Homepage (Part 1)   -   PDF
    How to use Twitter to create a widget showing a particular stream of data (tweets from a person or people, tweets with specific hashtags, etc.), how to customize the widget, and how to generate the code that must be embedded into Desire2Learn

  • Embedding Twitter Widgets in Your Homepage (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to create a Custom Widget within Desire2Learn, how to paste the Twitter Widget code, and how to prep your course for using the actual widget in your Homepage

  • Embedding Twitter Widgets in Your Homepage (Part 3)   -   PDF
    How to edit your Course Homepage to add the Twitter Widget, how to move the Widget to a different location within your Homepage, and an explanation of the types of widgets you might consider creating and why they could be beneficial to your class

  • Using Rubrics (Part 1)   -   PDF
    An overview of the Rubric tool within Desire2Learn, and an explanation of various options and parameters such as rubric type, criteria and levels, and scoring method.

  • Using Rubrics (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to put together a complete rubric using grading criteria and levels of competency for each criterion

  • Using Rubrics (Part 3)   -   PDF
    An explanation of how the Overall Score is calculated and how to change its calculation parameters, and instructions on how to link a rubric to a given assignment via the Desire2Learn Dropbox parameters

  • Using Rubrics (Part 4)   -   PDF
    A walkthrough of how to actually grade an assignment using a Rubric, how to leave feedback on various competency levels as well as the overall assignment, a demonstration of how to manually edit point values, and an illustration of how rubric points are applied to total assignment points.

  • Combining Sections
    How to combine multiple sections of the same course into one section on Desire2Learn.

  • Understanding Checklists (Part 1)
    Understanding what Checklists are and how they can help your students stay on track in your class

  • Understanding Checklists (Part 2)
    How to create a Checklist, how to add items and categories, and how to edit items if they need to be changed or re-categorized

  • Using the Event Log
    How to use the Event Log to restore a deleted Dropbox, Grade Item, or Discussion

  • Using the Attendance Tool (Part 1)
    Understanding what the Attendance tool is, how to use it to take attendance, how to sort the attendance data, and how to email students who are not coming to class often enough

  • Using the Attendance Tool (Part 2)
    Creating an Attendance Register, specifying attendance preferences, entering attendance, viewing data, and exporting data to .csv format

  • Using Surveys (Part 1)
    Understanding what surveys are and how they can be useful for you as an instructor
  • Using Surveys (Part 2)
    How to build a Question Library and populate it with survey questions, how to create different types of questions, and why to use this particular workflow when dealing with surveys

  • Using Surveys (Part 3)
    How to use the questions from your Question Library to create a survey, how to edit various preferences in a survey, and how to make a survey active so it can be used by students

  • Using Surveys (Part 4)
    How to insert a survey into the Content


  • Content Modules   -   PDF
    How to create modules for course files within your Content section, and how to move them and re-order the modules after they are created

  • Content Date Restrictions   -   PDF
    How to specify availability dates for Content Items, and how to set Start Dates, Due Dates, and End Dates

  • Content Files   -   PDF
    How to upload single files and multiple files to D2L and reorder files once they are loaded. Also, how to change the name of Content Items, add descriptions, and move them to different Modules within your Content section.

  • Deleting Content Items   -   PDF
    How to delete individual items from your Content section, and how to delete entire Modules from your Content section

  • Updating Files in the Content Section
    How to change a file on your computer and re-upload it without creating many duplicate files on Desire2Learn

  • Linking to Internal Course Items   -   PDF
    How to link to existing D2L activities such as quizzes, discussions, and dropboxes from within your Content section

  • Hiding Content from Students   -   PDF
    How to set the status of any Content Item or Module to Draft so it is invisible to your students.

  • Content Release Conditions   -   PDF
    How to specify release conditions for a given Content Item (i.e. students must download a PowerPoint before being allowed to open a PDF)

  • Using Completion Tracking Status   -   PDF
    How to use Completion Tracking Status so your students can stay on track with their work, how to set default Status values, and how to edit Status for individual Content Items

  • Changing Module Names
    How to change the name of a Module, how to move it to another location in the Content section, how to set all completion tracking methods, how to download all contents of a Module, and how to remove a Module from the Content section

  • Content Statistics   -   PDF
    How to track individual and aggregate student progress, how to see which students are downloading course files, watching videos, or clicking links. Also, how to view the total amount of time your students spend in various course activities within D2L.

  • Managing Dates (Part 1)   -   PDF
    How to use the Manage Dates tool to update start/end dates for various items in your D2L course, how to use filters to select specific items to update or simply do a bulk edit

  • Managing Dates (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to specify revised start/end dates, how to calculate new dates based on specific days (i.e. the start of the semester), how to do a bulk edit of all start/end dates so all dates are the same


  • Gradebook Overview   -   PDF
    How to create grade items in your D2L gradebook, how to work with grade categories, how to automatically distribute points across various items, and how to drop the lowest grade

  • Using the Gradebook Setup Wizard   -   PDF
    A walkthrough of the Setup Wizard and brief explanations of several options, all of which can be edited at your discretion at any point afterwards

  • Entering Grades   -   PDF
    How to enter grades into your D2L gradebook, how to leave student feedback, and how to leave feedback for your entire class on a given assignment

  • Personal Display Options   -   PDF
    How to change your personal display options in the Gradebook such as: Student information, default views, and overall gradebook appearance
  • Student Display Options   -   PDF
    How to change student display options such as what details of their grade they will see, the number of decimal places, and final grade calculation details

  • Gradebook Calculations Part 1   -   PDF
    How to use Weighted, Points, and Formula grading systems

  • Gradebook Calculations Part 2   -   PDF
    An overview of Calculated vs. Adjusted final grades, how to treat ungraded items, and how to enable auto-updating of final grades

  • Gradebook Schemes   -   PDF
    An overview of what Gradebook Schemes are, and how to create custom Schemes for your courses

  • Using A-F Grades in your Gradebook   -   PDF
    How to create a new Grade Item, how to assign a custom A-F Grade Scheme to a grade item, and how enter A-F grades via a drop-down Selectbox

  • Advanced Grade Item Options   -   PDF
    How to make a Bonus (extra credit) assignment, how to allow gradebook items to exceed the allowed value, and how to assign a specific grading scheme to a given gradebook item

  • Grade Category Advanced Options   -   PDF
    How to drop the lowest score on an assignment within a given Grade Category, how to distribute points across multiple items in a Grade Category

  • Working with Calculated Grades   -   PDF
    How to set up the Calculated Final Grades option, how to auto-update calculated grades, and how to manually re-calculate student grades

  • Working with Adjusted Grades   -   PDF
    How to set up the Adjusted Final Grades option, how to use calculated grades to generate adjusted grades, and how to manually edit the adjusted grade for students

  • Show Points in your Gradebook   -   PDF
    How to enable the total points scored on assignments to be visible when you view your Desire2Learn Gradebook, and how to enable Points visibility for your students as well.

  • Releasing Final Grades   -   PDF
    How to release final grades, and how to release grades automatically throughout the semester

  • Weighted Grades (Part 1)   -   PDF
    How to enable the Weighted Gradebook option, and why a Weighted Gradebook can be useful for you and your students

  • Weighted Grades (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to create a Weighted Category, how to assign a weight to the category, and how to choose a method by which you will distribute weights to all items in the category

  • Weighted Grades (Part 3)   -   PDF
    How to create Grade Items that exist within Weighted Categories, and how to automatically distribute points equally across all items in a Category regardless of their point values.

  • Weighted Grades (Part 4)   -   PDF
    How to create Weighted Items that do not have Categories, how to understand the relationship between Points and Weight, and how to ensure your Gradebook Weights all up to 100%

  • Computing Your Six-Week Grades   -   PDF
    How to use D2L to calculate grades for your students at the six-week semester milestone, how to enable new views in your Gradebook to see total points in addition to percentages, and how to sort by total points to see who is not performing well in your class.

Discussion Board

  • Discussions Overview   -   PDF
    An explanation of the difference between discussion forums and topics, and instructions for how to create them

  • Discussion Board Options   -   PDF
    How to create a new Topic within a Discussion Board Forum, how to specify a student-driven rating scheme for individual posts, and how to set other options like allowing anonymous posts or requiring moderator approval on posts.

  • Understanding Discussions Board Organization and Numbers   -   PDF
    How to use the Reading Pane in a Discussion Forum, and how to interpret the numbers that show up in the Reading Pane

  • Posting a Reply on the Discussion Board   -   PDF
    How to post a reply on the Discussion Board, how to start a new Thread, and how to pin a Thread so it always stays on top in a particular Topic

  • Discussion Profile Picture, Reply Settings   -   PDF
    How to have your students set a profile picture for discussion board posts, and how to disable auto-include replies when posting to the discussion board

  • Discussion Board Group Restrictions   -   PDF
    How to restrict access to specific discussion forums and/or topics to specific student groups

  • Discussion Board Visibility and Locking   -   PDF
    How to make discussion board topics visible to students for a specific date range, and also how to lock topics so students can read them but no longer add new posts.

  • Discussion Board Release Conditions   -   PDF
    How to specify certain conditions that must be met in order for students to post to a discussion board topic, and how to restrict access to specific class groups or sections.

  • Discussion Board Statistics   -   PDF
    How to view statistics on a given Discussion Board Topic or Forum, and how to sort the statistics to assist in your grading

  • Discussion Board Assessment Part 1   -   PDF
    How to set up various assessment criteria for a given Discussion Board Forum or Topic

  • Discussion Board Assessment Part 2   -   PDF
    How to sort, read, and assess multiple discussion posts from your entire class, how to assign a score to posts, and how to transfer an overall score to your Gradebook


  • Dropbox Overview   -   PDF
    How to create Dropbox folders for student assignments, how to setup and work with the TurnItIn Origanility Checker, and how to work with group folders. It also covers how to organize Dropbox folders into categories and link Dropbox folders to a grade item in your Gradebook.
  • Setting up TurnItIn Plagiarism Detection   -   PDF
    An overview of how TurnItIn works and how to enable it on a Dropbox folder

  • Using TurnItIn   -   PDF
    How to view the OriginalityReport generated by TurnItIn, and how to interpret the results as well as best practices for using the Report with your students

  • Using Grademark to Assess Student Papers   -   PDF
    How to use the GradeMark feature of TurnItIn to leave comments for students as well as record audio feedback and attach it to student assignments

  • Grading Dropbox Submissions   -   PDF
    How to access student assignments, how to read and evaluate them within D2L. It also covers how to leave feedback for students within D2L, how to assign grade points, and how to publish feedback for all your students at one time.

  • Managing Dropbox Submissions   -   PDF
    How to sort and organize student Dropbox submissions, how to view submissions by User or by File Type, and how to email students who have not turned in any submissions

  • Dropbox Release Conditions and Special Access   -   PDF
    How to specify release conditions for a Dropbox (i.e. students must download a PowerPoint before being allowed to submit an assignment to the Dropbox), and how to give students special access to a Dropbox (i.e. extending the due date for specific students)

  • Dropbox Submission Options and Time and Date Restrictions   -   PDF
    How to change various Dropbox submission options, and how to set the Start Date, Due Date, and End Date for a Dropbox

  • Dropbox Grade Associations   -   PDF
    How to create a Grade Item in your Gradebook and link it to a specific Dropbox folder, as well as an explanation of how this benefits you as an instructor—particularly for group assignments


  • Quizzes and Question Libraries   -   PDF
    An explanation of the relationship between Quizzes and Question Libraries

  • Building a Question Library   -   PDF
    How to create sections of questions within your question library, how to create various types of quiz questions, how to upload images to accompany questions, and how to set weights and percentages for correct answers

  • Creating a Quiz   -   PDF
    How to import questions from your Question Library into a Quiz, and how to link a Quiz to an item in your Gradebook

  • Quiz General Options   -   PDF
    How to specify the number of quiz questions per page, setting email notifications, and how to use descriptions, headers, and question hints

  • Randomizing questions on quizzes   -   PDF
    How to create a section within a Quiz with random questions pulled from a question bank, how to import questions from your question library, and how to add additional non-random questions to the same Quiz

  • Adding Special Access to Quizzes   -   PDF
    How to allow individual students to have special access to a Quiz (i.e. unique time requirements, special due dates, etc.) and how to set up various special access parameters

  • Quiz Restrictions Part 1   -   PDF
    How to set Start and End Dates for a quiz, how to create special Release Conditions for a quiz (i.e. students must turn in an assignment or watch a video first), and how to use the Respondus LockDown Browser

  • Quiz Restrictions Part 2   -   PDF
    How to set Password and IP address restrictions, how to set time limits, and setting special quiz submission options

  • Understanding Quiz Attempts (Part 1)   -   PDF
    How to view an individual quiz attempt for a student, how to get information on when and where the quiz was taken, and how to mark an attempt as the official graded submission for the student who took it.

  • Understanding Quiz Attempts (Part 2)   -   PDF
    How to grade subjective answers (short answer, essay, etc.) on a quiz, how to manually update a student's overall quiz grade, and why manually changing the grade can be useful

  • Understanding Quiz Attempts (Part 3)   -   PDF
    How to locate an unfinished quiz attempt, how to submit the attempt, and how to define search parameters for displaying quiz attempts for the entire class

  • Updating A Single Quiz Question for All Students   -   PDF
    How to revise a single question on a quiz, and how to give revised scores to all students based on the edited quiz question

  • Grading Quizzes Anonymously   -   PDF
    How to grade quizzes one question at a time, and how to grade anonymously to guard against any type of grading bias

  • Quiz Statistics (Part 1)
    How to view statistics for your quizzes, and how to get class averages and student performance data.

  • Quiz Statistics (Part 2)
    Viewing detailed statistics on individual quiz questions, looking for patterns among the data, and tips for interpreting and analyzing the data.

  • Quiz Reports (Part 1)
    Understanding what Quiz Reports are and how they can be useful, generating custom reports, choosing various parameters for a given report, and specifying access levels to determine who can view a given report.

  • Quiz Reports (Part 2)
    How to access Quiz Reports, how to specify date parameters for gathering report data, how to read a report and tips for interpreting the results.