Moving Forward With Sakai

For the start of fall semester 2016, instructors and staff members will have access to several new features in the Sakai learning management system following an upgrade from Sakai 2.9 to Sakai 10. This is actually a minor upgrade with minimal downtime. More details are forthcoming regarding the exact downtime dates. The consortium that oversees Sakai development decided that rather than calling this version Sakai 2.10, they would call it Sakai 10. While Sakai 10 has some notable improvements over the current version, the look and feel of the site itself will remain quite familiar.

What new features will be available?

Here are some highlights of the new features that will be available:

  1. Ability to drag-and-drop multiple files into the Resources tool.
  2. Adding extra-credit points to an item within the Gradebook tool.
  3. A redesigned native course Syllabus tool.
  4. Group submissions and grading in the Assignments tool.
  5. A new peer-review option for assignments.
  6. Native audio clip recording within the instructor’s content editing window.
  7. Integrated video management.

Are any other features changing?

For improved performance and user experience, there are a few tools that Sakai 10 no longer supports. These tools are listed below. If you are currently using any of these tools in your courses, the suggested replacements will offer very similar functionality, with the benefit of a more consistent experience for instructors and students. If you have any questions or concerns regarding this, Media & Technology Services offers one-on-one work sessions to answer questions about your course and customize tool settings to meet your instructional goals.

  1. Discussion and Private Messages (JForums). Instructors who currently use this tool will find that the separate tools of Forums and Messages are a suitable replacement.
  2. Gradebook 2. With the new ability to add extra credit and its simpler layout, Gradebook is the fully supported assessment reporting tool in Sakai 10.
  3. Modules (Melete). The flexible and feature-rich Lessons tool is a strong replacement for any courses that currently use the Modules tool.

Training and Workshops: 

  • Friday, 5/13, 10 a.m. WebEx, no registration required
    Make Your Sakai Class Easier for Your Students to Use!
  • Thursday, 5/19, 1 p.m. Chafee 208, no registration required
    Spring Cleaning for Your Sakai Course
  • Weeks of 8/22 and 8/29: Monday – Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Chafee 208
    Sakai Jumpstart Sessions – Open drop-in help sessions for instructors as they finalize building their fall courses.

One-on-one and Small Group Trainings:

ITS staff is available for small group and one-on-one work sessions by request to assist faculty in setting up their Sakai courses. If interested, please contact Ben Leveillee (benleveillee@uri.edu) or Mary Fetherston (fether@uri.edu) to schedule a session.