How to Use Brightspace

Posted on October 8, 2021

With one of the highest average IQs in the world, people in Canada are pretty smart. As a parent or teacher, you want your students to have a good education so that they can prepare for their future.

If you want to use technology to teach or learn effectively, you should consider Brightspace. It's an excellent online learning platform that helps students, teachers, and parents.

Plus, it offers unique features that can help everyone involved in a child's education That way, students will enjoy learning, and teachers won't have to work too hard.

Students, teachers, and parents can enjoy the features such as being able to reward students and tracking learning progress. That way, students will have more motivation to keep learning.

What Is Brightspace?

Brightspace is a learning platform that educators created. A part of D2L, Brightspace is a popular platform in Canada. It uses the cloud, so teachers can create courses from any device, and students can learn on any device.

The platform is flexible, so it can fit the needs of individual teachers and students. Educators can create specific tracks for their students to help keep the students on par with the curriculum. 

You can set up gamification to make learning more fun, which can encourage students to learn more. Video and social tools can also help make education more interesting for students.

Brightspace website

How It Works?

To use Brightspace, you'll need to teach at or attend a school that uses the platform. As long as you meet that requirement, you will need to create an account as a teacher or student.

Teachers should then be able to see the courses they are set to teach for this term. They can create lessons and add content to the course, and they can grade assignments as students submit them.

Students will be able to view courses they've enrolled in for the term, and they can see what their teachers have assigned. Whether using a computer or mobile device, students can complete and submit their assignments.

Some schools may have more specific ways they want students and teachers to use Brightspace. Ask your school about how to access the platform and your courses so that you can complete your work.

What Can You Do on Brightspace?

You can do a lot with Brightspace. As a teacher, you can create courses and lessons in different formats, and you can create lessons specifically for the needs of different students.

When you log into the platform, you'll be able to view course and student information. And you can add content to your courses as necessary.

The mobile design makes it easy to use the platform on any device. So if you ever need to work on a class when you aren't near a computer, you can do so.

Students can also do a lot with the Brightspace platform. They can log in to their accounts and access the courses they're currently taking.

Depending on those courses, students can view and complete assignments and tests. After a student submits an assignment, the teacher can evaluate it and provide individual feedback.

Like teachers, students can study anywhere as long as they have a mobile device. The platform also works on a computer.

Brightspace Features and Benefits

All of these features make the platform useful for students of all ages. Consider how the platform works and how it can help you.

Brightspace uses a responsive, mobile-first design that makes it easy to teach and learn anywhere. If a student doesn't have a computer at home or if they need to study out of the house, they can do so.

Portfolio Tool

The Portfolio Tool within Brightspace is by far one of the most popular. The reason being is that students can capture their learning experience in real time via picture or video, and also include their own thought process along with it. A true gem for the learning process because it's often times the reasoning behind a students work is what makes it truly unique. These captures, along with the assignments, are then shared with teachers. The ability to manage and organize their work inside the Portfolio account is an excellent way for students and teachers to visually see their accomplishments and progression over time.

The Portfolio Tool feature lets students share their progress with others. Meanwhile, the personalize options allow students to learn in a way that makes sense for them.

Quick Eval Tool

For teachers who have multiple courses, Brightspace offers a Quick Eval tool. You can use the tool to access and grade student work from all courses in one place. The teachers can easily prioritize the submitted (and/or completed) works by sorting and filtering them.

Performance Analytics

Teachers also have access to analytics for overall class performance and individual students. That way, you can see how well a student is doing, and you can provide extra help when necessary.

Community and Support

And whenever you need support, you can contact other teachers and experts. Join the Brightspace Community to share ideas with others, and use Brightspace support for personal assistance.  More on that below.

Another important question to know is how to use Brightspace. The exact way you'll use Brightspace depends on if you're a student or a teacher, and it can also depend on your institution.

Different schools may have different tools to help you navigate and log into the system. You can check with your school on how to do all of that, so you can teach or learn effectively. 

Brightspace Products

Brightspace Products and Services

Brightspace houses learning platforms from the Kindergarten level all the way up to higher education. Below are some insights into each one. Be sure to click into the links that apply to you, your child or your student to learn more.

Brightspace Core

The convenient Core products deliver what is considered to be the best platform for K-12 and for Higher Education and has the ability to deliver tools, multiple services and support for an all-in-one package.

Performance Plus

Performance Plus for K-12 and Higher Education has the ability to create personalized learning experiences and programs for each students individual needs. It is an interactive space making the journey of discovery that much simpler.

Engagement Plus

This is a terrific add on for any Brightspace package. Engagement Plus is available for K-12 and for Higher Education and delivers game based learning and allows for healthy competition between learners

Brightspace Add-ons

There are a variety of add-ons that make the Brightspace experience even more useful and integrated for both students and teachers.

Virtual Classroom and Video Assignments Premium - A truly innovative way for evaluators to assign video tasks in order for the student to demonstrate their knowledge, in real time.

Course Merchant - A self serve option to register for courses that once complete, direct the student to the Brightspace learning centre associated with that particular Brightspace learning platform.

App Finder - The easiest way to find apps that are associated with your learning institution. You can even build your own!

Professional Development Dashboard and Services - By far the most innovative tool for tracking and documenting the learning journey for both K-12 and higher education.

Brightspace login

Brightspace Login / Sign In

No matter what school your student attends or where you teach, you should know how to find your Brightspace login. The parent company D2L has a convenient login finder on their website to help.

Once you find that, you'll need to use your username and password to access your account. Be sure to create a username and password you will remember, and keep that information in a safe place.

You'll need to log into Brightspace whenever you need to work on grading or adding lessons. Or your child will need to log into their account to complete their school work.

Highly Searched Schools - Universities and Public School Brightspace Users on Google

It's no surprise that the Brightspace is a highly searched term on Google. After all it is one of North America's most popular online learning platforms. But who is searching for it the most? It's folks from the Toronto District School Board, University of Ottawa and Thames Valley District School Board.

Brightspace TDSB

If your child attends school in the Toronto School District, you can access their lessons with Brightspace TDSB. First, you will need to create an account using the TDSB website.

Make sure you know your child's student number because that will be their username. You'll also need to create a password that you can remember so that you can log into the portal for your child to do their work.

As a teacher, you will go through a similar process, but you'll use your employee number for your username. You should create a password to use to access your account later.

Now, you can change your password later, but you should choose a password you can remember to keep from having to change it too often.

Once students and teachers are in the system, they can teach and complete courses online. Teachers can give students certificates and badges to help show their progress.

Grading assignments is also easy on any device, and you can make sure your students can all learn in ways that work for them.

Older students even have the ability to enroll in other courses to supplement their learning. And there are plenty of fun activities to engage younger students.

Brightspace UOttawa

Brightspace is also available at the university level through the University of Ottawa. The platform provides students with a virtual classroom where they can take courses or supplement in-person classes.

Students can access electronic resources to help them learn outside of class. Everything is under one portal, so you only need to remember one login.

Along with uoZone, Brightspace serves as the perfect place for students to study and work on homework. Teachers can add resources and lessons to the portal for their respective classes.

That way, teachers don't have to copy and pass out handouts in class. Students can view Brightspace during class to help take notes, and they can review their notes later.

While you may not use Brightspace through UOttawa as a parent, it can be useful to your child. If they share their login information, you can help them with their assignments.

Of course, as a professor at the university, you can also create an account. Like at other schools, Brightspace allows you to provide resources and lessons that make the most sense for that particular class.

Brightspace TVDSB

Moving back to primary and secondary school, Brightspace TVDSB is available to students in the Thames Valley District. The district offers full remote options for students from kindergarten through grade 12.

They also have been able to integrate remote and in-person learning to help students succeed. Remote students can use the Brightspace platform to learn and complete their assignments.

Students have access to synchronous resources, such as live classes and instruction over the phone or chat. Asynchronous methods, such as pre-recorded videos and written feedback, are also available.

You don't have to worry about your child not getting a proper education. Even with the remote setup, students can learn from qualified mentors.

Students and parents can access various resources outside of class as well, and all of that happens in Brightspace. Resources are available for everything from mental health to career advice.

There's even a parent portal you can join to learn more about the school district. That way, you can find answers to questions or problems without needing to access your child's account.

Brightspace FAQ

As with any online tool, there are questions. Surprisingly however, Brightspace is fairly simple to understand and adapt to. Here's what we found from existing users most frequently asked questions.

The platform can't detect cheating if you don't proctor a test with cameras, software, or IP monitoring. Like other online learning platforms, students can avoid those restrictions if they're sneaky.

While Brightspace itself can't detect or prevent cheating, teachers can set up quizzes that can deter cheating. First, you can write questions that students can't answer with a quick Google search.

You may also want to set a time limit on the quiz, which can encourage students to study before the test. While some students may still cheat, they won't have enough time to find all of the answers.

Another way to limit cheating is to put the questions in a random order. That way, students won't be able to see similar questions in a row that could make cheating easier.

You'll need to log into your Brightspace account through your school. In your dashboard, you should see the option to click on your name near the top corner on the right side of the screen.

Next, you can click on "Profile" to view your profile information and change things like your picture or other details.

Teachers can also view student profiles by going to the Classlist tool. Find the name of the student whose profile you want to view, and use the dropdown menu to access their profile.

The biggest competitors to Brightspace include Blackboard and Canvas. D2L used to be the name of the learning management system, but Brightspace is the new name, so they are the same thing rather than competitors.

Google Classroom is another major competitor. However, Brightspace offers plenty of features for students and teachers that make it one of the best choices on the market.

Brightspace is very efficient for learning and teaching. Because educators designed the program, the creators were able to use their experience to help people use it.

Unlike some programs, Brightspace focuses on the teacher and student. You don't have to worry about learning a complex program just to complete your work.

The program's origin also gives it a high satisfaction rating from users. Whether you need to teach or your child needs to learn, the platform is easy to use.

Brightspace can detect when you change tabs while using the program. However, this may not always be a sign that a student is cheating, especially if they're working on a research project.

Teachers looking to reduce cheating within Brightspace may want to look into proctoring tests. That way, they can use cameras and other features to track student activity.

Whether a student changes tabs or looks at a different device, the teacher can figure out why that happened. Then, they'll be able to determine if the student was cheating.

Is Brightspace for You?

Brightspace is one of the best online learning platforms on the market. Formerly D2L, the platform is great for use at all levels, from primary school to university.

Teachers will also have an easier time reviewing and grading assignments. And parents can stay in the loop regarding their child's education.

At Insurdinary, we understand the importance of a good education for your child. Learn how other schools use the platform to determine how it can help your school.

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