News

Spring 2011 brings system upgrades and changes to BCcampus

This spring and summer, several changes and upgrades for many BCcampus services have been planned in consultation with BCcampus stakeholders and clients. These improvements to BCcampus services will result in new ways of working and a different look and feel for some online services.

Following is a list of the upgrades and changes, along with a short summary of each. We’re doing everything we can to ensure a smooth transition and are preparing for any hiccups should they arise. Please bear with us as we do our best to keep services running smoothly during the transition.

 

April 26 | Moodle Upgrade

Due to increased participation in the Moodle shared service, the Moodle hosting infrastructure is being improved to accommodate increasing institutional participation (e.g., Vancouver Island University) as well as improve performance and redundancy.

Affected User Groups: Institutional participants (enterprise and local) of the Moodle shared service

 

April 28 | Adobe Connect Upgrade

The Adobe Connect upgrade from version 7.5 to 8.02 will offer server performance and stability improvements, and a user interface overhaul. Users of Adobe Connect will experience many improvements in ease of use and ability to collaborate. The complete list of improvements is here: http://www.adobe.com/products/adobeconnect/whats-new.html

Affected User Groups: Collaborative programs, institutional participants of the Adobe Connect shared service

 

May 5 | Collaborative Program Web Sites

The Applied Business Technology (ABT), Northern Collaborative Information Technology (NCIT) and Aboriginal Early Childhood Education (AECE) will each have an improved web site with a consistent look and feel for collaborative programs:

ABT – https://abt.onlinecollaborative.ca
NCIT – https://ncit.onlinecollaborative.ca
AECE – https://aece.onlinecollaborative.ca

There is a beta version of the ABT site now running (https://abt.onlinecollaborative.ca) that we invite faculty, administrators and student to try. Please send your suggestions through the ‘Feedback’ link on that site or email helpdesk@bccampus.ca.

Students: Please see your Welcome Letters for details on these new sites.

The new NCIT and AECE site URLS will not be available until May 5th.

The institutions involved in collaborative programs have requested improvements in the technical services that support the programs’ online delivery. For each collaborative program, a self-contained site will better represent the multi-institutional nature of the program and meet the needs of all users (current and prospective students, administrators, instructors,) and better market the collaborative programs.

Affected User Groups: Collaborative programs

 

May 4-5 | Desire2Learn Upgrade

The D2L upgrade from version 8 to 9.1 will provide better functionality for students, instructors and institutions participating in the D2L shared service like Camosun, NLC and NWCC. This upgrade plan has been developed over the last several months, and May is the time recommended by institutions that use the shared service.

The upgrade will run from 9 pm May 4th to 6 am May 5th. During this time, students and faculty will not be able to access their courses. (This information has also been posted in D2L, on the student portal and on program administrators’ site.)

Affected User Groups: Collaborative programs, institutional participants (enterprise) of the D2L shared service.

 

June 16 | BCcampus web portal

We are moving all services to discrete, self-contained web presences, because these services serve very different purposes and user groups. The existing portal URL (portal.bcampus.ca) will be replaced with a web-page that provides links to the replacement versions of the previously included services. These services include PASBC, Course Finder and program administration and reporting access functions for the Collaborative Programs, and access to online courses offered as part of the Collaborative Programs.

 

June 16 | PASBC becomes ApplyBC

The Post-secondary Application Service (PASBC) name and URL are changing to ApplyBC and applybc.ca. ApplyBC will provide a streamlined user experience as a single-purpose site. The existing pas.bc.ca URL will redirect users to the newly named service, and the service banner will indicate “Formerly known as PASBC”.

Affected User Groups: Users applying to any of the 26 B.C. post-secondary institutions that participate in this service.

 

June 16 | Course Finder becomes CoursesBC

The Find Online Courses service will be replaced by CoursesBC on June 16, 2011 (a beta version of Courses BC is already available at coursesbc.ca). The registration suite of student transactions will not be available on the new CoursesBC for the time being. Program information will be provided from BCCAT Education Planner, accessed via a link on the CoursesBC site. The manual entry of program and course information will no longer be required.

Affected User Groups: Users who previously accessed this service via the portal, who will be redirected.

 

June 23 | Connector Upgrade

BCcampus’ Connector system will undergo an upgrade that, once deployed, will allow for additional capabilities (especially with respect to network management tools) and will be vendor-supported (the version we’re using now is open-sourced and community-supported). The upgrade will involve a brief but widespread outage in which all Connector systems and related websites will be unavailable for approximately four hours.

 

If you have any questions about the above, please contact:

Collaborative Programs: Lawrence Parisotto or Greg Link
Shared Services: Lawrence Parisotto
Connector: John Sampson [update October 2011: please contact Lauri Aesoph laesoph [at] bccampus [dot] ca for Connector questions]
Student Services (ApplyBC, CoursesBC): Randy Bruce