New Course Catalog in ePortfolio

We’ve been rolling out a few changes to the look and function of our ePortfolio (and for those who have shared ideas and bug reports over the months — thank you for your patience and your commitment to making Saylor.org ever better).

Back in July, we shared the new and improved student directory, and today we’re drawing your attention to the new course catalog.

New ePortfolio Course Catalog

Here’s what’s new with the ePortfolio course list:

  • Bigger View: Everything has more screen real estate, making it much easier and more pleasant to navigate and read
  • Improved Text Filter: Search by course code, course title, or words in the description. Should you navigate away from the page, your search results will remain when you return — but you can also clear everything and start fresh with the push of a button
  • Better links to courses: We made the course titles hyperlinks in addition to the “more…” text, and everything opens in a new tab or window, so your ePortfolio will remain open in the original browser tab. We got a lot of feedback from students who weren’t sure how to begin their studies after enrolling…kind of critical information, we think! Before, the student had to return to the “my courses” tab to find a link to newly-enrolled courses. No more!
  • New options after clicking “Enroll”: We saved the best for last. Before, when you selected “enroll” the button simply simply changed to two that read “enrolled” and “drop”. It wasn’t quite clear just what you were supposed to do…no hyperlinks, no instructions. Yikes. We added links, as mentioned above, but we also made students’ options even better. When you enroll in a course, a lightbox appears offering you a choice of options:

ePortfolio Navigation Options

You have the option to:

  • go to the course
  • view the forums to see what conversations are happening
  • go back to your main portfolio screen to view your enrolled courses
  • close the lightbox and stay right in the course catalog

These are simple changes, but we think they make for a big improvement. Happy learning!

What do you think?
Have any ideas for improving the ePortfolio? Let us know in the comments.

One thought on “New Course Catalog in ePortfolio

  1. September 21, 2013

    Paul Morris Reply

    This is much more usable and more visually appealing. It throws up, however, a continuing mismatch between the way that ‘status’ is viewed in different parts of Saylor. If an Area of Study is enrolled then all the courses which show there as ‘planned’ are listed in the course catalogue as ‘enrolled’. Conversely, the assessment platform knows nothing about enrolments anywhere outside its own walls and will always warn that you are about to enrol in a course when you take an examination.

    I suspect these issues arise from Saylor’s design behind the scenes using separate and not wholly integrated open source platforms. The exams look to be running on Moodle, I guess other parts use different systems.

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