Last summer, DePaul surveyed all faculty to solicit feedback on our two primary learning management systems (LMSs): D2L and Digication. Faculty told us that, for the most part, D2L is meeting their teaching needs.
The feedback on Digication, our ePortfolio tool, told a different story. Faculty voiced frustration with both the lack of upgrades and the usability challenges of creating well-designed portfolios. So, the Digication Steering Committee reviewed nine other digital portfolio platforms, as well as the planned upgrade to Digication, to determine which platform would best meet our needs moving forward.
Digital portfolio spaces are, in some ways, more layered than other learning management systems. For example, crafting and delivering a quiz online doesn’t have a lot of variance—quiz question types are fairly standard, and LMS designers can anticipate the needs for anyone who wants to deliver an online quiz.
ePortfolios are different. Students, faculty and staff at DePaul have a much wider range of needs for this platform, which makes selecting one tool to meet all of those audiences trickier. That’s why we wanted to cast a wide net in exploring other platforms, but that’s also why we ultimately chose to stay with Digication and move forward with their upgraded system for Autumn 2017-18: Digication is currently meeting the needs of most of our constituents.
In case you’re curious about the process, we narrowed in on two systems: PebblePad and upgraded Digication. In our recommendation to the Teaching, Learning and Technology Committee, we noted that to warrant a switch, we felt like a new system needed to be about 40% better on 80% of our needs—and we didn’t find a platform that met that standard.
On Saturday, August 26, DePaul upgraded to New Digication. All new portfolios created after August 26 will use the new design tools. Any ePortfolios created prior to August 26, in what we’re now calling “Digication Classic,” can still be edited and updated. Digication will officially support “Classic” until September 1, 2018. After that, you’ll be able to use Digication Classic as long as web browsers support it.
The New Digication upgrade has several key features:
- Design options: The platform has a much-improved “look and feel.”
- Content autosaves frequently: You won’t lose content if you step away from your computer and are logged out.
- Improved submitting: When you submit a portfolio, you can now publish all pages right before submitting. After you submit, you can click “View Submitted ePortfolio” to confirm your submission.
- Uploading documents: Many document types—Word documents, PDFs, presentation files—now render clearly and are easy to read.
- Publish all pages: On September 1, Digication will release an option that allows you to easily publish all of your portfolio pages with one click (or select which pages you’d like to publish together).
- Classic-to-New conversion tool: In late October, Digication will release a tool that will help users transfer their Classic ePortfolios to the New design tool.
For help with New Digication, the Digication Get Help guide will be updated by September 6. In the meantime, you can use our working documentation.