What to do DURING the U of T Holiday Break?

Exams are over. Time for hot chocolate and cozy sweaters.  Ahhh! It is so tempting not to think about school while on the holiday break, but it is around the corner. And, for you eager beavers who can’t wait to access your courses, rest assured, I’m here to help you prepare for the new year!

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iClicker, Why-Clicker?: Classroom Response Systems

iClicker software works in combination with presentation software like PowerPoint or Keynote. Instructors use the software to pose multiple-choice questions to students during lecture. Students respond to the questions using an iClicker remote, which should be registered through Quercus for use.

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Notification Settings on the Quercus System

Buzz, buzz. You have a new message. ‘A new announcement was posted by your instructor’. Buzz, buzz you have another message. ‘Assignment 1 instructions were added to the course’.

For a student to be up to date on new course material posted online, announcements, course readings, or weekly lectures is important but you also want to enable notification settings to your personal preferences.
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Learn about Quercus through Videos

Want to learn how to use Quercus? Do I have a solution for you! There are lots of videos that can teach you the different tools on Quercus. Canvas is the learning platform that runs Quercus. So, sit back relax and hit play!

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Inbox Tool: Student View

Learn how to use the Inbox Tool

First understand how to use the Inbox Tool: 

  1. Global Navigation, click Inbox
  2. Select the course of whom you want to send the message
  3. Click on the Compose a new Message
  4. In the ‘To’ field either type in the name or use the Course Roster to find the recipient
  5. Select person and type the subject and message
  6. Click Send
  7. You can look in the sent to conform if message was sent

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Group Tool: The Student Side of Things

Do you have group projects in your class? Does your instructor insist on using Groups on Quercus? 

Well we can help you use the group tool successfully for your course! 

The People tool is important for groups. Make sure your instructor has made People available in the course menu for you if they want students to join groups. Also, please check with your instructor before creating groups. Your instructor must enable the ability for students to create their own groups. 

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Course Availability

This is a shout out for all you eager beavers! Yes,  I’m talking to you. You read Course Availability and jump right into this to find out  

  1. When your courses will be available
  2. How will you know if your course is available

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A View on Quercus from First Year

This fall, University of Toronto faculty and students switched to using a new learning toolbox called Quercus. As a first-year student, I don’t have much to compare the new system to, but so far, I’ve found that the system is simple to navigate. It looks very modern and clean with the different sections neatly organized and all the tools you could possibly need for a course.

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Why the Calendar Tool is Useful for Students

We all understand what a calendar does and how to read/use one, but Quercus has a few interesting features that can help you be more organized with school. Here’s some tips to help you take advantage of the Calendar tool:

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How to Change or Update your Profile in Quercus

In Quercus, you can enhance/be creative with your profile page, since it is not your official personal information profile with the University of Toronto.  (That information is found on ACORN.  For help using ACORN, see ACORN Help How-to).  As such, feel free to add a biography and relevant personal links.

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Unauthorized Message? Page Not Found? Here’s What To Do!

Big flashy RED warning sign? Page Not Found. Don’t know what happened?  Do not fear!

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Submitting Assignments to your Course

Knowing how to submit your assignment for your courses is easy to learn and important to understand. 

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We’re switching to Quercus!

Q.utoronto.ca, it’s as easy as that.

The word Quercus may be hard to remember but getting onto the login page is simple! This is starting off well. Like Portal, you simply login with your UTORid. We get to a nice home screen, the Dashboard. It’s very clean and colourful, pleasant for the eyes.

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Goodbye Portal, Hello Quercus

Quercus will replace the Learning Portal (Blackboard) on September 1st, 2018.

Quercus, powered by Canvas, is the new online learning platform at the University of Toronto. Not only can students keep on top of course activities and deadlines, they can work together in groups, and check their course progress and feedback from their instructor, all from any device.

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Finding my way around Quercus

The first thing you see when you log on to Quercus is the Dashboard that displays your current courses. The great thing I love about Quercus is that the course cards are colourful and customizable. Let’s be real, I don’t WANT to do work but I have to. If I’m going to do work I want to see what I want to see. I can choose the colours of my courses and I can also give it a “nickname” for my courses. For example, I put my favourite colours on my courses to get me happy and excited to dive into work. I gave my course nicknames that will motivate me to do work or to energize me. Quercus lets you have fun with this! Let your creativity run wild! I personally put song lyrics that hypes me up!

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How do I view my Grades?

Viewing grades on Quercus is a nice and easy 2-step process!

  1. From the Global Navigation menu on the left-hand side of any Quercus page, select Courses.
  2. From your Course Menu click on Grades.

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Messaging the Instructor

With so much information coming at us at all times from multiple courses students usually have questions, inquiries and a need for clarification, especially before an assignment, project or final exam. Therefore, a reliable method of messaging the instructor is always a key tool that must be included on any platform, since the ability to contact the professor outside the classroom is a fundamental aspect of learning that allows students and professors to stay connected outside of the classroom. This is where Quercus’s Inbox comes in, and luckily it makes this communication as seamless and easy as possible!

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Quercus: There’s an App For That!

News flash: there’s a student app for Quercus, the new University of Toronto learning management engine! Canvas Student is the app from Quercus’ parent service Canvas which I only discovered recently, powering all Canvas implementations, including Quercus. With a great user interface, the essential functionality of the Desktop app is captured well in this simple yet powerful application.

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