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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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MnSCU announces D2L Update

Major D2L upgrade in June will impact all courses and instructors who use MnSCU's course management system.



Please read this entire message as it contains important information about what faculty can expect regarding the upgrade to Desire2Learn (D2L) in June 2008. This message is being sent to all faculty who ever had a course in D2L, using the e-mail addresses that are associated with the faculty accounts in the D2L system. The message is also being sent to the D2L Site Admin listserv, D2L Campus Trainers listserv, and the IMS Advisory Council listserv.


We will upgrade to D2L 8.3 in June. The system will be down starting on Thursday, June 5, at 6:00 PM. We expect to have the system available to users by Monday, June 9, at approximately 8:00 AM.

After the D2L system comes back up when the upgrade is completed, your campus site administrators will need to do some work in your school's D2L site to apply settings and permissions, so contact them for specific information about when you can expect to have access to your courses.


Proceed with business as usual for your summer and fall courses. Follow the procedure at your school for requesting the course shells, copying course components and developing your courses. If you will be teaching a course that is in session during the downtime, let your students know in advance when the D2L system will be unavailable and plan activities for them during the downtime so they can work on course assignments offline.


After the upgrade to version 8.3, the look and feel of D2L will be different and there will be new features for some of the tools, such as Content, Grades, Discussions, and Groups. Your courses and the course materials will be available, but the icons, and the colors and the placement of the icons in D2L will reflect the changes that are designed to make the interface more consistent for all tools. Other organizations that have already upgraded to the newer version of D2L have reported that their users have made an easy transition and are pleased with the new features, and the new look and feel of the environment.

  • Contact your D2L Campus Site Administrator or your D2L Campus Trainer for information about D2L 8.3 training opportunities.


As always, it is recommended that you retain a copy of any data that you feel is necessary to have access to-such as grade books. Bear in mind the security precautions you should take for private student data that you choose to store on your computer or any other storage device.

Faculty can also export course content by using the Copy Course Components/Import/Export feature in D2L. The export feature provides a copy of the course materials, but no student data. The export file can be used to import into a future D2L course. Your D2L Campus Site Administrator or your D2L Campus Trainer can assist you with exporting gradebooks and exporting and importing course content.


Our D2L Canada vendor worked on strategies to reduce the total downtime for the upgrade in June 2008. An ongoing problem has been the excessive amount of data that has accumulated in the past four to five years, which greatly increases the time necessary to perform D2L software upgrades. The discussion data that currently exists will require an excessive amount of time for the upgrade process. D2L determined that deleting some discussion posts and attachments to the posts, (but not the forums or topics), would significantly reduce the total downtime. The IMS Advisory Council discussed the options for discussion deletion, and agreed to proceed with the deletion of discussion data from courses including the Fall 2006 semester and previous semesters. Any course that is listed under a semester prior to and including Fall 2006 will be affected.

WHEN: Selected discussions will be deleted on Sunday, May 18, 2008 at 5:00 AM

WHAT WILL Be Deleted: The discussion posts, and any file attachments to the posts for discussions in all courses prior to and including the Fall 2006 semester.

WHAT WILL NOT be deleted: The forum, the discussion topic, these discussion fields: date and time, poster's name, subject line of discussion post.

WHAT WILL BE RETAINED: Statistics and user progress for discussions will remain, based on the date and time, student name and subject of discussion post. This information can be used by faculty who need that data for research purposes.


If you have a need to retain the actual posts and the file attachments to posts, your D2L Campus Site Administrator or your D2L Campus Trainer has been provided with a document that has instructions for saving discussion posts. The instructions are also available at the IMS web site:

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