D2L-Alternate Homepage Design (UW-Madison)


UW-Madison is adopting Canvas as the single, centrally supported learning management system, and discontinuing support for Desire2Learn (D2L) and Moodle. Access to D2L and Moodle will permanently end June 1, 2018. For information about retaining materials from D2L or Moodle, please refer to this document.

The document outlines how to use an outside HTML site inside D2L including using an outside site as a homepage or adding a twitter feed or Google Maps to a homepage widget.

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Think of D2L, and other learning management systems as a box that holds a bunch of different gadgets that work together like widgets, gradebook, discussions, dropboxes etc.  In addition, you may actually want to use a tool as your homepage.This also means the D2L "box" can be a wrapper for HTML (websites) outside of D2L.  

 D2L Tool as a Homepage

To have a D2L tool, like discussions, table of contents, or the calendar:

1.  Start by clicking on the Course Admin drop-down menu in the navigation bar, and then Edit Course.

2. Click on Homepages.jpg.

3. Click on the CreateHomepage.jpg button.

4.  Under the Homepage Type drop-down menu, you can choose "Tool"

Homepage Type drop-down menu

5. Select the tool you wish to appear from the dropdown menu.

6. Click save and close. 

7. The new tool homepage will be added to the list of your available homepages.  Use the Activate Homepage drop down menu to select the new homepage.  Then click Apply.

To make an existing URL the homepage

Virtually any outside Homepage that meets security specifications* can become your D2L Homepage, allowing you to use that tool while managing the course and students with D2L tools.

1. Start by clicking on the Course Admin drop-down menu in the navigation bar, and then Edit Course. 

2. Click on Homepages.jpg

3. Click on the CreateHomepage.jpg button. 

4. Under the Homepage drop-down menu, you can choose "External URL"Homepage Type drop-down menu 

5. Enter the URL in the URL field below, including the "www". 

6. ClickSaveandClose.jpg when finished. 

7. The new tool homepage will be added to the list of your available homepages. Use the Activate Homepage drop down menu to select the new homepage. Then click Apply.

*What type of External Webpages can be used?  Really, anything that has a web address, or existing URL can be used and you can still have access to the D2L tools through the NavBar.  However, D2L might block content if the site is not secure.  You can check to see if a site is secure by looking at the address.  Secure sites have HTTPS:// instead of Http://  Some ideas might be:

  • Facebook group page
  • Twitter group 
  • Google Doc
  • Blog or Wordpress Site
  • A GoogleSite 

Keywords:learn@uw learnuw d2l desire2learn brightspace homepage design customize html website twitter   Doc ID:54777
Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW Madison
Created:2015-08-06 12:56 CDTUpdated:2017-12-01 12:21 CDT
Sites:Learn@UW Madison
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