ToW: Adding Kanopy and Films on Demand clips to Moodle

Tip of the WeekThe library subscribes to streaming video collections that provide Trinity College users access to a variety of films. Two of the larger collections are  Kanopy and Films on Demand. Both collections allow users to create clips or shorter segments of films and link to or embed  them into Websites such as Moodle. 

Kanopy is a rich archive of feature films and documentaries from well-known producers and indie filmmakers, including the Criterion Collection. Kanopy provides instructions for creating clips on this page, and allows you to embed clips, playlists, and/or entire films into Moodle. You can also simply grab the direct link to the playlist, instead of embedding. 

Films on Demand is a collection of documentaries on a variety of topics, ranging from modern healthcare policy debates to art to archival newsreel video. Easy steps to create custom segments are found on this page. Like Kanopy, playlists and segments can be embedded into Moodle.

If you have any questions about these collections or using them in class or in Moodle, please get in touch with Amy Harrell, Educational Technology Librarian,



ToW: Protecting Your Digital Identity

Are you interested in protecting your digitTip of the Weekal identity? Doing so not only provides a layer of protection from online harassment, but also promotes positive data practices. To do so, visit the Center for Solutions to Online Violence and follow their guide on locking down your digital identity. Some helpful tips they recommend include the following:

This simple step will make it much more challenging for anyone to log-into your accounts. This also is a great way to ensure that your account is not accessible on devices where you have logged in previously (just make sure you always log out of your accounts!)

Another great tip is to assess what information is freely available about you online:

If you are interested in using the programs listed above, you can visit them at Pipl, Zaba, and Spokeo. Although these tools cannot remove all information that is available about you from the web, they can give you a better idea of what information is available and give you strategies for limiting its pervasiveness.

ToW: New Assignment Feedback and Annotation Tool

Tip of the Week

Over the summer Moodle was upgraded to the latest release which includes a few new features. One of the more useful features is the addition of a reviewing panel  for giving feedback on assignments. When you grade an assignment that was submitted as a Word doc, PDF, or the online text option you will have the ability to add feedback and annotate the document right in the grading interface – no need to open or download the files first. You can add text notes, highlighting, or draw shapes on the document. This can be much faster than downloading Word files to add comments then re loading them to give the students feedback.

If you give feedback on assignments submitted in Moodle this tool should be a great time saver for you. More information on this feature can be found in the Moodle documentation at



ToW: Add course materials to Moodle from the new Library OneSearch

Tip of the WeekThe Library’s new OneSearch offers fast and easy access to library books, articles, films, audio, and more. Many of these materials are available online so that your students can access them directly from any of their devices. 

With OneSearch, it’s easy to build course reading and play lists by grabbing the permanent URL for items you find and pasting them into Moodle. 


To get started, go to the Library home page and enter your search term(s) in the OneSearch box: 


On the results page, you will want to sign in to be sure you are seeing all of your options. Also note the various ways you can filter your results on the left side of the page: by Library, article type, material type (video, audio, book, article), etc. 


When you click on the title of an item, you’ll see additional details. Click the Permalink button to reveal the permanent URL, and then “Copy the permalink to clipboard,” which will allow you to paste the link into your Moodle course. 


TOW: Transferring and receiving large files with

Tip of the Week

We have all been there: You need to share a file with a colleague or friend but it’s over the limit for email attachments (which at Trinity is 10 megs). Maybe you have a folder of pictures you want to send someone. Sure you could attach a couple to each email and send a bunch of separate messages but there is a better way. Why not zip the folder (Windows right click -> Send To compressed (zipped) folder, OSX right click -> archive) and send it all at once?

There are many options for sharing these files including Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive and third party file sharing sites. But at Trinity we have a home grown solution that is very easy to use and may be your best option.

Using any member of the Trinity community can share files as large as 2 gigs with anyone whether they have a Trinity email address or not. In the other direction anyone can send files to someone at Trinity. The only catch is that these files must be picked up within 14 days or they will be deleted but that’s OK , you don’t want your files sitting around on our servers forever do you?

Dropbox.trincoll.eduDropbox drop off

To get started navigate to If you are sending a file to someone at Trinity there is no need to login.

If you want to send a file to someone without a Trinity email address you will need to login with your Trinity username and password first.

Just click Drop-off and then enter the recipient’s name and email address and upload the file.

You could also upload a text file with a list of names if you want to send it to multiple people at the same time.

The recipient of the file will receive an email with a link where they can download the file.

Sounds easy right? it is!

What is is a massive archive of video tutorials. It’s a great way students, faculty and staff can learn specific software (like every variety of Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint), programming concepts and skills (like WordPress, HTML, CSS and Javascript) and design principles (like typography, color theory and typography).

How do I log in?

Every member of the Trinity community has access to, on campus or away!

First way:

  1. Click this link to go to
  2. Log in with your Trinity College username and password.
  3. The first time you do this, you’ll need to verify that the information we’re using to authenticate is correct.

Second way: 

  1. Go to
  2. Select “Log in” on the upper-right part of the screen
  3. In the dialog box that pops up, click on “organization login” then scroll down to “enter your organization’s URL.” This is
  4. Log in with your credentials. Again, the first time you do this, you’ll need to verify your authentication information.

How do I find what I need?

There are a lot of videos on, and it can be hard to know what one you need. Fortunately, there are a few ways to find the content that will fit your needs.

  1. Use Lynda’s search feature. Start by entering the specific name of the software you’re looking for (like Microsoft Office 2016 – it’s important to include the version) and the phrase “essential training.” This will return a list of videos and courses that the editors have flagged as, well, “essential” for the software you are learning.
  2. Browse Lynda’s library. lynda_topicsIf you know the general discipline of the skill you’d like to learn, Lynda’s library has a nice interface for browsing their content. Clicking the “library” link next to the search bar will open a tray of all the disciplines Lynda covers. So if you want to learn about typography, you can probably find a lot of great tutorials in the Design category. Here’s what the library browse tray looks like:
  3. Take a look at one of Trinity’s curated playlists. Our curated playlists are works in progress, and we’re adding more all the time. Below are the ones we have put together so far, but if you’re looking for something different, make an appointment with the STA office, and they can help you find what you are looking for.

Curated Playlists

Mobile Pedagogy Demonstration–April 26

Technology - 4_sb26th

Come learn about ways to turn ever-present devices into platforms for teaching and learning. Optimize readings and handouts for display on phones and tables; present from an iPad; and learn about phone-based alternatives to clickers.

Adding text annotations with is a great tool for collaboratively annotating text on websites, and it’s WordPress plugin is a reliable way to add this functionality to your site.

Contact your instructional technologist if you’re interested in adding the to your WordPress site, or want to talk about how you can add this tool to your course content.

site with hypothesis plugin activated

When you are on a WordPress site that has the plugin activated, you should see the bar on the right side of your browser window. Click the arrow to expand the tray to get started.

create a hypothesis account

If you don’t have a account, you’ll need to create one. Please note that this is independent from your Trinity account – if you need help resetting your password, you will need to go through the site, not the Help Desk.

Back on the original WordPress site, open the tray, and click "Sign in."

Back on the original WordPress site, open the tray, and click “Sign in.”

When you've successfully signed in, you will see the annotations that have already been added to the page.

When you’ve successfully signed in, you will see the annotations that have already been added to the page (when the tray is open).

Once you're logged in, you can add annotations of your own. You can add annotations to the overall page, or highlight specific text to make direct comments.

Once you’re logged in, you can add annotations of your own. You can add annotations to the overall page, or highlight specific text to make direct comments.

Simple Timelines and Maps With WordPress

In the Spring of 2014 I had the opportunity to work with 3 different faculty members in the History department who wanted to experiment with having their students visualize data using maps and timelines. While they each had different goals and objectives the guiding principles were the same. We wanted the students to be able to get a better understanding of the materials by visualizing it either on a timeline or a map or both. We also wanted this to be fairly low tech. We didn’t want to make the students learn GIS and we certainly wanted to avoid any tech heavy solutions involving custom code.

After looking at a few options we decided to make use of our existing WordPress platform and use plugins to make timelines and maps.

The solution turned out to be quite simple for the students yet flexible enough to give use a variety of options for displaying the information. Both the timeline entries and mapping entries were simple fields added to regular WordPress posts. The training required was minimal. The students quickly picked up how to add locations to their posts using the simple Google maps search interface. Setting the dates on timeline posts was even easier – just enter the date where the item should go on the timeline.

HIST-311: Place in the Native Northeast
Tom Wickman, Assistant Professor of History and American Studies:

nativenortheast mapIn this course students posted their work on the class WordPress site and had to post a number of map points connected to their posts as part of various assignments. This site will be added to each semester covering a range of topics associated with Native Americans in the Northeast. The site hosts a map containing all points created to date as well as individual maps created by each student as part of a final project. The geomashup plugin makes it simple to add a location to a post using a standard Google maps search interface. By using categories and tags we can display maps on specific topics and the readers can also decide which categories they want to display.

HIST-303: Modern Ireland
Jennifer Regan-Lefebvre, Assistant Professor of History:

irelandThis course made use of both maps and timelines in WordPress. We wanted the students to get more background knowledge of the history of Ireland for the course so the goal of the WordPress site was to have the students generate content that when pooled together could serve as a source of information useful to all of them. Each student was assigned a specific topic to share with the class. The hope is the students can build on this first step in future classes.

HIST-300: History Workshop
Sean Cocco, Associate Professor of History:

history chart

This course focused on the concept of night time in Europe from 1500-1800.  The goal of this project was to visualize information based on both time and place. Utilizing categories and tags helps link the various posts and topics together. Each semester the course topics changes and the hope is students will be continuously adding to the site to create a rick recourse of historical information.

More information on the plugins:

There are many approaches to both maps and timelines available. We chose these solutions because of their simplicity and seamless integration with WordPress. There are other timeline options that are more feature rich (Timeline JS for example) and many more options for mapping such as Google Fusion tables and ArcGIS software. If you are interested in possibly using timelines or maps with your students just contact your Instructional Technologist and let us help you get started!

Introducing WASS: The Web Appointment Scheduling System

Trinity is beginning to support WASS (Web Appointment Scheduling System) as a way to facilitate appointments, especially student appointments. WASS is an open-source software project that was launched at Princeton University, and is used at a variety of institutions across the country.

With WASS, you can: specify blocks of time that you have made available for appointments, divide those blocks as you like, and then make that calendar available to others (either Trinity students/faculty/staff or the whole world). For people who use an electronic calendar, such as Outlook, Google Calendar, or a computer- or device-based calendar app, WASS also provides a feed of these appointments, so that you’re able to keep track of them easily.

This is a *basic* guide to getting started with WASS: for more information, contact your instructional technologist or me (Jason B. Jones).  Also note: This is an experiment, and some things are still improving.

First Steps: Accessing WASS and setting up a calendar

Anyone with a Trinity College userid can create a calendar on WASS.

First, go to, and log in with your username and password:

WASS home
The first time you log in, it will take you to the Make an Appointment page. As you see, you can search by Calendar Owner’s Name, User Name, or Calendar Title. (Note: Clicking ‘Browse’ lets you browse actually-existing calendars, not everyone on the Trinity system.) But let’s set up a new calendar. You do this by clicking “Create Calendar”:

WASS after login
The first screen gives you a variety of simple setup options: You can give it a simple title (e.g., “Dr. Jones’s Office Hours”), decide whether it’s a group calendar, and whether to allow multiple calendars to overlap. (Note: This implies you can set up different calendars! So, for example, you can have a calendar for office hours, another for research or service commitments, and maybe other, more specialized calendars for short-term projects.) “Default Block Settings” are the identifying information that will be displayed on the blocks you set up. You can format this as you like. (The information is filled in automatically from Active Directory–it’s the same information that shows up in the campus directory.)

WASS calendar setup--screen 1

One important thing to understand is “Access Restrictions” (at the bottom of the screen). Click on “Show” to expose them:

WASS access controls
Each of these three settings are important:

  • View Calendar: Who can see this calendar? By default, only people with a Trinity userid can see the calendar. You can make it visible to the whole world (Open), just a certain number of specific people (Restricted), or only those who control the calendar (Private).
  • Make Appointments: Who can make an appointment on this calendar? The set up is the same as view: the default is Trinity-only, but you can set different levels of permission if you’d like.
  • Show Appointment Details: The default behavior is that people who are not the calendar owner can only see whether an appointment time is open or busy. If it’s busy, they cannot see any details about it. If you tick this box, though, you can expose the details about the appointment to anyone. (In other words, it’s all or nothing–no details are visible, or they all are.)


Once you’ve adjusted the settings to your liking, click “Save.”

Your calendar has been created! On the next screen, you get a lot of different choices:

WASS setup options

You can create more calendars, add managers to your calendar (for example, a colleague or an administrative assistant), or delete the calendar. (These choices are on the right.) You can also get addresses for subscribing to the calendar. (Center of the screen.) We will return to these in a moment. What we want to do is create some times for appointments. To do that, we click “View Calendar” (on the left-hand column.

You can see a generic calendar, but no way to make appointments. To add this capacity, click “Add Block(s)” on the left hand column.


You can then set up a variety of options:


WASS Adding Blocks


I won’t go through all of these options, but will just note that you can set blocks up to be one-time or recurring; that you can set the length of time for appointments (or leave this blank); you can limit the number of appointments people can make; and you can also (under “Advanced Options”) change the privacy settings for this particular block. Once you’ve configured the settings as you like, click “Save,” and it will appear on your calendar.

You can easily share this calendar with students by clicking “Calendar Setup,” and then sharing the top link of the three with your students:

WASS distribution

The *second* URL is also worth noting: If you already use an electronic calendar, you can add that URL to it, and subscribe to your WASS calendar there for convenient viewing.  (This works in iOS and most other phones/tablets; it works in Outlook on the PC side, and iCal on the Mac side. A workflow for Mac OS is coming.)

Known issues:

  • E-mail/text reminders are still a work-in-progress.
  • The calendar does not yet display correctly in Outlook for Macs or for webmail.
  • No integration (yet) with Moodle, to facilitate class-specific appointment calendars.
  • Trinity localizations (phone numbers / links in Help files) are not complete.