Attention undergraduate students!
The LoudCloud Undergraduate website will be undergoing scheduled maintenance on Wednesday, April 16th from 1am – 4am MST and Thursday, April 17th from 1am – 4am. Please note that this maintenance does not affect Graduate or Ground students. We understand that this is inconvenient for some of you, and we do apologize. Every website needs a little fine tuning from time to time and we scheduled it to occur when the least amount of you are online slaving over your schoolwork.
Be sure to download and save your eBook to your computer and copy any details you might need from your syllabus or readings before the maintenance begins. If you did plan to do schoolwork during this maintenance window, you can work on your discussion questions by typing them up in Word to copy into your classroom later or complete your reading or assignment for the week.
Thanks for your patience while we make these important updates to LoudCloud!
Please be aware that beginning March 20, 2014 we will begin migrating Graduate classes to their own LoudCloud environment. This change will not affect the look of your LoudCloud classroom; the new environment improves the balancing of the load across our servers.
As we migrate courses over to the new Grad2 environment, check back here for a complete list of courses which will be located on Grad2.
*Please note that as of April 17th, all Graduate level courses beginning on or after April 17th, 2014 will now be on LoudCloud Grad2. Students should utilize the Student Portal single sign-on in order to access courses, but you can also bookmark http://lc-grad2.gcu.edu/. Students receive access to their courses 3 days before the start date.
April 10th Start
April 3rd Start
March 27th Start
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Grand Canyon University would like to invite you to our gorgeous campus for a feedback session about the LoudCloud platform. We want to know if you enjoy using LoudCloud, if you find it easy to use and if there is any way we can improve the platform. You don’t need to bring anything with you – just your ideas!
LoudCloud Feedback Session
Monday, March 24
6 – 7 p.m.
Roadrunner Conference Room in the Student Union
Win a Starbucks Gift Card!
We’ll have a drawing for those in attendance,
and five winners will receive a Starbucks gift card.
If you have questions or would like to register for this feedback session, please email DL-LMS-Operations@gcu.edu
Hey students! We value your opinion and your input into your education at Grand Canyon University. We’d like to invite you to take part in a focus group to evaluate LoudCloud, our learning management system.
This focus group will be held for one hour once per month on Monday evening from 6 – 7pm and continuing through May 2014 on the GCU campus. Participation will be limited to 5 students from each college. If you would like to participate in the focus group, please email DL-LMS-Operations@gcu.edu, stating your college of study. The deadline for responses is Monday, March 10.
We hope you will be able to take part and look forward to hearing from you!
This year is just flying by already! How are you doing with the New Year Resolutions that you made? Still sticking with them?
Though it seems like a really long time ago already, just last month we posted four New Year Resolutions of our own to improve your LoudCloud experience. You can take a look at what all those resolutions are here. So how are we doing? I’m happy to report we’ve already made some big strides forward. Here’s what we’ve been up to:
1. Improved performance and reliability
Our IT teams added several additional servers to help balance the load and keep LoudCloud chugging along when everyone is accessing it to turn in assignments or post discussion questions. Though we had some students with connectivity issues in January, we’re happy to report that those issues were a result of various internet service providers having some trouble because of the winter storms battering areas of the US.
2. Improving the Turnitin process.
We’re still working on improving the Turnitin process. Our LoudCloud Focus Group participants provided us some valuable feedback in the January group meeting. While Turnitin is a third-party that provides a service to us and we can’t control processes like the turn-around time you receive your reports, we can help make things better by clarifying assignment details to include when an assignment is required to be submitted to Turnitin and when an assignment isn’t required to be. We’ll be looking for your feedback on that topic from the LoudCloud Feedback Survey you received in your student email earlier this week. Be sure to submit those by February 15th and stay tuned for more on this soon!
3. LoudCloud coming to a tablet near you.
You will probably be most excited to hear that we launched a pilot program for our GCU LoudCloud Bolt app this week. Students selected to participate in the pilot are downloading their LoudCloud app to their iPads and are excited to complete a series of tasks they would normally do on their desktop or laptop computers. They’ll be providing us a lot of feedback about their experiences using the app, so we’ll have more updates on how this is progressing in the near future. So be sure to check back on the blog frequently!
That’s what we’ve got for now and we’re pretty darn proud of the small steps forward we were able to make in just a month! Leave us a comment to let us know what you think or tell us how you’re doing with your own New Year Resolutions. And don’t forget, if you’re a ground student you can get involved by joining our LoudCloud Focus Group!
Did you know that you can set-up your profile in LoudCloud with a short bio and even a picture? And the great news is that you only have to do it once and your profile will be visible in all of your classes. For the most part, filling in your LoudCloud profile is just like filling in the information on your Facebook profile. There is a size limit for the picture, so let’s take a look at the steps for uploading your photo.
Before we even head into LoudCloud, let’s start by finding the picture you want to upload. Remember, everyone in LoudCloud can see your profile so you’ll want to choose a photo that is appropriate. Head shots that you would feel comfortable adding to your LinkedIn profile or sending to an employer are best. Find the photo on your computer and let’s resize it for LoudCloud.
If you open up your photo files, you can hover your mouse over the picture you’d like to upload and see both the dimensions and file size. LoudCloud has a limit of 10kb for the file size, so you’ll want to make sure your photo’s file size is smaller than that. As with the example above, my file size is 73.2kb, so we’ll need to resize the photo.
Right-click on your photo or select File and then select Open With… from your toolbar. Most likely you’ll at least have the Paint program on your computer. You can quickly and easily resize your photo in Paint.
Resizing in Paint is really easy. Your photo will open and it’s as simple as clicking the Resize button from the toolbar. Click Pixels and I recommend that you resize your image down to 50 x 50. Just enter 50 into either the horizontal or vertical boxes. The dimensions will adjust to kept your photo from stretching. Click OK and save your picture with a new name so that you don’t save over your original. My resized picture is now just 3kb and meets the requirements for uploading to LoudCloud.
Start by clicking on your name on your LoudCloud homepage or class homepage. Your profile will pop open. Click on Change Picture. Browse your computer for your new re-sized picture file. You’ll see your new profile picture added to your profile.
Thanks to the participants of our LoudCloud Focus Group who suggested I blog this tutorial! If you’d like to join our focus group and contribute your feedback about LoudCloud and our LoudCloud resources, take a look here and send an email to us at DL-LMS-Operations@gcu.edu.
‘Lopes up and welcome to your new semester at GCU! Still getting the hang of this LoudCloud thing? Then this week’s series on the LoudCloud blog is for YOU! We’re chronicling the Day in the Life of a Ground Student and highlighting what you should do each day of your class in the LoudCloud classroom. Let’s get started with Day 1.
The first thing to do once you log in to your class in LoudCloud is to head on over to the Class Wall to post your bio. You’ll notice six tabs across the top of your classroom; hover your mouse on the ‘Connect’ tab and click ‘Class Wall’ from the drop down menu.
Your instructor has probably already posted his or her bio. Read that one first because your instructor might ask you to address something specific in your own bio, like why you’re taking this class or what you hope to gain out of it. The Class Wall works a bit like Facebook. You can respond to your instructor’s or a classmate’s bio or you can just like it by clicking the thumbs up.
Be sure to post a bio of your own. This is your time to do a bit a bragging about yourself. Are you awesome baker with the best chocolate chip cookies in the world? Or maybe you just ran your third marathon. Just made the GCU cheer squad? Those are all the great things that make you, well you! Feel free to share a much or as little about yourself as your like. Just type up your bio in the box and click ‘Post’. You do have some options like changing the font or using bold, italics, or underline to highlight something extra important in your bio.
Just be sure to check back for any comments on your bio and to meet the rest of your classmates that might not have checked in yet when you posted.
You’ll also want to check out your syllabus and go over what’s in store for not only this first week of class, but each week. Access your syllabus from the Course tab. You’ll be able to easily navigate to your required readings for the week, download any additional resources needed, review the week’s assignment details, and see what your weekly discussion questions are.
You can, of course, get started on your reading. We’ll take a more in-depth look at making notes and highlights on your lectures tomorrow, so be sure to check back for Day 2!
Hey ‘Lopes! How are those resolutions coming along?Did you find our tips helpful?
As promised, we’ve made our own list of New Year’s resolutions for an improved LoudCloud.
1. Improved performance and reliability. Everyone at GCU and at LoudCloud are dedicated to this goal. We know how important it is for you to be able to access LoudCloud and not worry about not being able to do so. Our IT teams still need to take LoudCloud, as well as other systems like your Student Portal, offline for maintenance. We do that on Fridays from midnight to 4am because our analysis tells us that is the time of the week that the least amount of students access our systems. We’ve also added additional servers to help balance the load when you’re all accessing LoudCloud and turning in those assignments you worked so hard on.
2. Improving the Turnitin process. Many of you have experienced various errors when submitting your assignments to Turnitin. We’re working with Turnitin to improve the process and we’re creating new resources to help you avoid some of the common errors due to things like accepted format types (PowerPoint isn’t accepted by Turnitin) or large file sizes. Check back here on the blog all this month as we give you insider tips on everything from posting your bio to the Class Wall to finding your grade and feedback from your instructor.
3. LoudCloud coming to a tablet near you. You’ve been telling us and we’ve definitely listened! We’ll be releasing the LoudCloud app to a test group of students and then we’ll continue to enhance it based upon all the feedback we receive. Stay tuned!
4. All new elements based on tools you told us you need! And because that can be a little bit different for everyone, you’ll be able to customize your LoudCloud dashboard leaving the widgets that matter to you and removing the ones that don’t. Another cool feature is your course reading list will be available right from your dashboard. That’s right – no more wading through the syllabus to find out what you need to read this week. Finally, the course content list will be replaced by a cleaner, more easy-to-read task list.
This certainly isn’t all we have in store for this year, but remember how we talked about setting smaller goals that we can realistically tackle? We’ll tackle these first and then keep marching on forward with more improvements from there. What you can expect from us, besides to see all of these in the near future, is regular progress updates right here on the blog. So be sure to follow along and give us your feedback!
And don’t forget, if you’re a ground student you can get involved by joining our LoudCloud Focus Group!
Our LoudCloud team wishes you and yours a Happy New Year!
We would also like to inform you of an important known issue fix. We’ve applied an update to LoudCloud that fixes the issue of the missing Browse button. Previously, the Browse button was missing or appeared as .ted when clicking New Attempt to upload documents to your weekly assignments.
It is likely that you will see a spinning orange circle on your LoudCloud homepage the first time you log in, which prevents announcements, discussions, and your widgets from updating. We recommend that all students refresh your browser in order for you to see the changes we’ve applied to LoudCloud. You can do this by pressing the F5 key on your computer while in your classroom in order to clear all stored LoudCloud data from your computer. If you’re using a Mac, you can refresh your browser by pressing the Fn and F5 keys simultaneously.
We appreciate your patience as we work to continually improve LoudCloud and the other resources at Grand Canyon University!
Happy New Year ‘Lopes! New Year’s has always been a time for looking back to the past, and more importantly, looking forward to the coming year. It’s a time to reflect on the changes we want (or need) to make and to resolve to follow through on those changes. We all make them. Maybe you’ve resolved to lose that Freshmen 15 or to spend more time studying this semester. Maybe you’ve resolved to raise your GPA or to get an on campus job. We’re here to tell you that you’re not the only one making New Year’s resolutions.
Our LoudCloud team has made some of our own! We’ll share those in just a minute, but first let’s make a pact. Here’s what I mean. New Year’s resolutions are all about improving something we don’t like about ourselves or know we can do better, right?
Except that our best intentions in January don’t tend to survive the month. Instead of boosting ourselves up, we set ourselves up for failure by making resolutions that are too vague to be realistic. Let’s focus on how to make resolutions so that they are easier to keep. So, as our LoudCloud thought about our own resolutions, he kept these tips in mind:
- Don’t be vague.
Resolutions like, “I’m going to lose weight” or “I’m going to raise my GPA” are too vague to be realistic and we can get discouraged quickly. Instead, write specific goals like vowing to lose 1 lb per week. This way you can monitor your progress toward your goal and if you fall behind, you know.
- Make yourself accountable.
Tell other people about your goal! When you do, you’re more likely to stick to it. You know what they say – we can lie to ourselves, but we can’t lie to others. Post your goral and progress to Facebook or tweet it. Maybe start a blog! We’ll definitely be posting our progress updates for our own resolutions here on the blog, so keep checking back.
- Have a monthly goal.
It’s great that with the coming of the New Year we feel all amped up to better ourselves. But setting goals just once a year can be more self-defeating than uplifting. When we meet smaller and more frequent goals, say something we plan to do weekly or even monthly, we get that confidence boost and encouragement to keep going. And even if you fall off the wagon, so to speak, you can just pick yourself up and start over again next week or next month.
- Remember that you can’t control everything.
Maybe you’re graduating and you set a goal to find a job with a certain salary. It’s definitely a positive goal, but there are other factors like the company’s finances, unemployment rates, and the state of the financial market that are completely out of your control. Focus on what you can control and acknowledge what you can’t.
There’s nothing wrong with giving yourself a challenge, but making a resolution that is too difficult or out of your control will only lead to breaking it. Think about these tips and stop back tomorrow as we share our own New Year’s resolutions. We hope you’ll share one of yours and we can help keep each other on track to reach our goals!