Several methods of communication are built right into the software, making it easy to stay informed without compromising personal information.
We take privacy and security very seriously, so our system has several forms of communication built right into the software that allow users to interact without having to give out their email address or other personal information. Students can send privates messages to other students or their instructor using the built-in messaging center, make posts in the discussion forums, and even chat with their classmates in real-time using the text-based chatroom that is available for each class.
Our built-in watchlist and notification system also lets users know whenever they have a new message from another user or unread posts in the discussion forum. These notifications also provide updates about class activity, scheduled livechats, and essay tests being graded. Unread messages and notifications are indicated by an icon in the menu bar at the top of the site, and can easily be seen or accessed at any time from this one centralized location.
Users can still opt to receive email notifications when they have a new message to make sure they don’t miss anything important, but all this information can be accessed quickly and efficiently without having to leave the site and check their email inbox.
Messages sent by other users or instructors can be found in the Message Inbox. From here, users can reply to an existing message or create a brand new message to send to one or more people. Messages are private, so only the message recipients and the person who sent the message will be able to see it. This system is built right into the LMS software, so students never have to worry about giving out their email address or losing important messages that could have ended up in their junk mail folder.
Notifications are generated by the software automatically whenever something important happens. They allow users to stay on top of things by viewing a summary of all recent activity in one centralized location, without cluttering up their message inbox. Because there may be a lot of activity, especially when multiple classes are active, the user can choose to view notifications for each class separately to avoid confusion. This is especially important for instructors who are teaching multiple classes at the same time.
Both students and instructors can further prioritize important topics by adding them to their Watchlist, which is ideal for those who want to be notified when somebody replies to a post they made, but don’t necessarily want to be bothered every time someone in that class makes a post.
Instructors will have the additional option of posting a class announcement, which will be visible at all times on the class landing page for students to see. Everyone in the class will be notified as soon as the instructor makes an announcement, so this is the best way for instructors to notify the entire class of scheduling changes, new course content, or other important information. Announcements can be made on a per-class basis, or the instructor can post a global announcement for all students who are enrolled in the course (regardless of which class they are in).
Each class has its own text-based chatroom where students can interact with each other and have a conversation with their classmates. This is different from private messages and discussion posts because the conversation happens in real-time right there on the page, so users don't have to scroll through paragraphs or click into multiple posts or pages. This makes it much easier for groups of people to have a natural, flowing conversation, ask for clarification, and engage each other directly.