CNA Logo
Course Login  |   Webmail  |  Live Chat  |  Contact Us

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

On this page, you’ll find answers to some of the questions most commonly asked by other course developers and facilitators.

Click on the + / - in the title bar below to open / close


I am teaching an online course. How can I find out how many students are in my course?

D2L’s class list doesn’t by default provide a count of students. To get a count, select the Classlist option from the Course Tools menu. Click the Show Search Options link. Check Role and select Student from the pull-down menu. Click the Search icon. The number of search results displays in the bottom of your options panel followed by the list of student information.

How can I find out who is online at any given time?

From the Course Tools menu, choose Classlist. The online status icon displays beside the names of users who are currently online.

Why are my D2L pop-up windows being blocked?

The pop-up blocker may be turned on in Internet Explorer. If this is the case, you need to add the D2L site to the list of allowed sites. The Yahoo! or Google Toolbar may be installed in your browser. If this is the case, you need to uninstall the toolbar in order for the pop-ups to work in D2L. Visit the Yahoo! web site or the Google web site to learn how to uninstall the toolbar.

How can I found out more about training sessions and workshops?

Our training schedule can be viewed at: Faculty Calendar. Alternatively, you may send an email directly to our Faculty Trainer.

What do I do if a student has not logged into my course in over a week?

If you have a telephone contact number, you should call to ask if the student is encountering any difficulties. Alternatively, you can send an email to the Help Desk at and include your course number, the student’s name and the student’s ID number. The Help Desk will attempt to contact the student for you. You should also call the student and ask if they are encountering any difficuties.

A student is unable to log in to my On Campus course shell. Who should I contact?

Verify the student is using the correct log in credentials (same credentials used for network access). Check the Login Issues page for a list of possible solutions. If you are unable to resolve the issue, email the Student Services Help Desk ( for assistance. Be sure to include the course code number as well as the student’s name and ID number.

I still have questions? How can I get more help?

Our online learning environment, Desire2Learn, is supported by our Help Desk Team.
If you have questions, you still need answered, please don’t hesitate to contact us

Course Content

My on campus course shell is empty, how do I copy content from a previous version?

If you previously taught a course and still have access to it, you can export components from the source course (previous version); then import to your current course. Watch the video Export and Import D2L Course Information to find out how.

If you would like content copied from a source to which you do not currently have access, please contact Theresa Pittman at

I want to hide course content pages until a specific date. Can I do this?

Yes. From the Manage Content area, click on the dropdown menu icon next to the file you would like to hide. Click Edit. Select the Restrictions Tab. Choose Hide this Topic and then set the Start Date and Time as well as the End Date and Time. Use the Save and Close button to save your changes.


Can I copy assignments or other items from a previous D2L course into my new one?

Yes. You can reuse materials from any of your courses. To do so, you must first Export the components from the source course; then Import them to your current course. From the Course Tools menu in the course you wish to copy from, choose Edit Course. Then click on the Import/Export/Copy Components option. Choose Export Components and then click the Start button. Select only the components you need. If you would like to locate specific files, use the Select individual... option to select them. Then click Continue. Verify your selection and click Continue again. Then click the Finish button.Click the option to Download the Zip package to save the file to your hard drive.Log in to your current course. Choose Edit Course from the options under Course Tools. Select the Import/Export/Copy option.Navigate to locate the zip file on your hard drive.Click the Start button. Click Continue when prompted. Specify which whether or not you wish to overwrite existing files and select the components you wish to import. Click Continue. Click to confirm selections yet again. Then click Finish.

How do I allow access to an assignment if student misses the deadline?

Access the assignment you wish to modify. Click on the Restrictions Tab, and scroll to the bottom.
Click Add Users to Special Access button, and enter the new start and end dates for that student.
Select the student from the list. Click the Add Selected button. You can do this for several students, giving each student different access times. Click Save.

What are Dropbox folders?

Dropbox folders are areas set up for students to submit their assignments. You can set up a dropbox folder for each of your assignments and restrict access by setting start dates, end dates, and release conditions. You can also set up special access; and associate folders. You can include information about evaluation methodology, details about rubric assessments, instructions, and clarifications on assignment expectations.

How do I create Dropbox folders?

From the Assessment menu, choose Dropbox. On the Dropbox Folder page click New Folder. Assign a name. (If you want to group your assignments, you can create and/or add them to a category at this point as well. For example, you may have both Labs and Assignments in your course). Specify what your assignment will graded ‘Out of’ and add specific instructions if needed. (Note: The Out of field does not necessarily have to match the value assigned to the assignment. For example, assignments may be graded out of 10 but worth only 5% of your overall grade.) Attach files if required. For example, students may be required to format a Word document or to complete and Excel spreadsheet. Select your Submission preferences and then click Save and Close to complete the process.


What should I use as a password for my midterm or final exam?

You may use whatever you want as a password but should keep the following in mind. The password should be unique to each exam and should not be re-used from semester to semester. It should be at least six characters long but no more than 10 characters in total. It should contain at least one capital letter and one number and there should not be any spaces or special characters or symbols.

How do I create questions for a quiz?

Note: Questions can be created directly on a quiz or they can be created in the Question Library and added later.

Select Quizzes from the Assessment menu. To add a question to the question library, click on the Question Library link. Create or click on the folder in which you wish to add a question. (This will help keep your questions organized.) Click New and then specify the type of question you wish to create. Complete each field as required. Click Save if only one question is being added or Save and New to continue with another question.Your questions are saved in the library but have not yet been added to a quiz.

To add to a quiz you must first open an existing quiz or create a new one. To create a new quiz, select Quizzes from the Assessment menu. Click New Quiz and give your quiz an appropriate name. Remember to include your course number. Specify or associate your quiz with the appropriate Grade Item in the Gradebook. Click Save when satisfied with your selections. Click on the Layout/Questions tab. Click Add/Edit Questions. Select New to add new questions directly on the quiz or click Import to add questions already in the question library. Choose Question Library as your Source Collection. Then choose the appropriate folder. Select each question you would like to add; then click Save. Click the Done button when you have added all the questions needed for the quiz.

Is there an easier way to create quizzes in D2L?

Yes, we have a third-party software program called Respondus that allows you to quickly set up a quiz using a basic text editor such as Notepad or a word processor such as Microsoft Word. You must format your document in a particular way so the Respondus can recognize and publish it. Find out more HERE.

Why can’t students view their answers to questions on a quiz?

You need to enable this in your Submissions View. Select the quiz you wish to edit. Select the Submissions View Tab and click on the Default View option. Under View Details, select Show all questions with user responses. You may want to enable more options depending on the assessment type.Click Save once you are satisfied with your selections.

How do I create quiz submission views?

Select the quiz/exam you wish to edit. Select the Submissions View Tab and click on Add Additional View. Name your view and modify the details as appropriate. For example, you may wish to have a separate view for a midterm exam or final in which students are not provided question answers. In this case, you may want to name your view Exam View and associate this view with exams in your course.

How do I allow access to a quiz if student misses the deadline?

Access the quiz you wish to modify. Click on the Restrictions Tab, and scroll to the bottom.
Click Add Users to Special Access button, and enter the new start and end dates for that student.
Select the student from the list. Click the Add Selected button. You can do this for several students, giving each student different access times. Click Save.

What is the difference between Special Access options under Quiz Restrictions?

The option to “Allow selected users’ special access to this quiz” means that everyone in that class will be able to take this quiz on the date that it is released. The option to “Allow only users with special access to this quiz” blocks the quiz from all students except those who has been granted special access.

I have to make changes to a quiz. Can I do this while a student is writing the quiz?

No. Once a student is writing the quiz, changes cannot be made to the content. Please ensure all information is correct prior to the quiz date/time.

If I place files in the Dropbox for a midterm or final exam can the students see them?

If you are placing files for midterm and/or final exams in a dropbox folder, please ensure you specify a start date and an end date under the restrictions tab. This will ensure that the files are not released to the students until the appropriate time.

How do I ensure Respondus Lockdown Browser is required for a quiz/exam?

Select the Quiz and choose Edit. Click the Restrictions tab. The Respondus option will be listed under security options.

How do I view and grade quizzes and exams?

Select Quizzes under the Assessments menu. Click on the ““next to the quiz you wish to grade.
Click the Grade option.

How do I link a quiz to a grade item in my grade book?

From Assessment, choose Quizzes to a view the list of quizzes and exams in your course. Select the Quiz you wish to link to the Grade Book by clicking on its title.If the Grade Book has been previously set up, use the dropdown menu to select the item from the Grade Book. If it has not yet been added, click the Add Grade Item. Enter a name for the column heading in the Grade Book, specify a category if necessary. Then specify the number of points and the weight of the quiz. (Note: Points indicates what the quiz will be graded ‘Out of’ and does not necessarily have to be the same as the weight which indicates the value of the assessment item towards the final grade). Adjust the Restrictions if necessary. Click Save.

Grade Book

Can I hide a grade item?

Yes, choose Grades from the Assessment menu to enter the Gradebook. Click on Manage Grades on the top menu. Click on the title of the assessment item you wish you hide. Click the Restrictions Tab to view visibility options.

Why is the grade not updating after I grade a students’ quiz or exam?

Once you have updated the grade, you will need to click the Recalculate button located at the top of the page before you save and close.

How do I submit final grades now that the semester has ended?

You can easily transfer your grades from the Grade Book in Brightspace directly into PeopleSoft. Refer to the Grade Book Manual for detailed instructions.

Pulse App

How do I ensure that my course works well with the new Pulse app for students?

The new Pulse app for students allows them to use their mobile device to check for notifications and alerts, see the overall assessment plan for their course(s), and view their assessment results as soon as they are posted. But in order for the app to be effective, you must ensure due dates are set on assessment items, reminders are added to your course calendar (when necessary), and grades are posted in a timely manner – all good teaching practices that you probably already adhere to anyway!


How are groups used in D2L?

Groups allow students to work collaboratively. Students can be members of more than one group in the same course. Each group can have its own discussion forum and/or Dropbox folder for assignment submission. Members of groups can be graded individually or as a team.

How do I create groups and assign private discussion areas?

From the Course Tools menu, click on Groups. Click the New Category button to create an area to contain your groups. Give the category a name, for example, Presentation 1. Select the enrollment type. Add the number of groups you want to create. (This will depend on whether or not you want to students enrolled automatically or manually). Check the options to Set up Discussion Areas and Dropbox folders if you want these associated with each group.