What’s New in Sakai 20?

December 1st, 2020 by Sarah Kinne

Sakai 20 is coming to Loyola on Monday, December 21st, 2020! On 12/21 from 7am to 12pm, Sakai will be unavailable. 

Once the upgrade is complete, the following new and improved features will be available: 

  • Sakai Grader with a document preview for the Assignments tool 
  • A date manager that allows instructors to quickly modify all due dates in the Site Info tool 
  • An auto-groups wizard that takes the guesswork out of creating groups 
  • A brand-new Rubrics tool that integrates with Assignments, Forums, and Tests & Quizzes 
  • Gradebook enhancements, including the ability to equally weight items within a Gradebook category 
  • Rich text editor templates to easily create stylized Lessons pages 
  • And more! For a full list of new features, see the Sakai LMS blog

Faculty, staff, and students who would like to learn more about the changes coming to Sakai are invited to attend a “What’s New in Sakai 20?” info-session or a Q&A open forum with ITRS staff. For dates and registration information, see Sakai 20 Upgrade

Panopto 10: Coming Soon

December 8th, 2020 by Oliver Batchelor

Panopto 10

Greetings from ITRS! We are pleased to announce the arrival of Panopto 10, Loyola’s official lecture capturing platform. The new version will be available on December 20th, 2020 and will include several new and improved features:

  • Tags — Panopto’s video library has a new way to support content organization and discovery: #tags.  Users can now add tags to their recordings from the video settings, the editor, or in Panopto Capture. 
  • Smart Chapters — The new Smart Chapters tool automatically creates a table of contents for any recording with a screen capture, including recordings from Zoom.
  • Delete Streams in the Editor — Users can now delete or replace video streams in the editor, allowing for greater flexibility in making changes to recordings.
  • Share interesting points in a video — This feature enables viewers to easily share a link to a specific point in the video with others.
  • Audio Normalization — Users can now make audio levels consistent throughout their recordings with the audio normalization feature in the editor.
  • Updated Mobile apps — New updates to the Panopto app (coming soon) will provide users with enhancements for recording and uploading content from their phones.

Top Hat Training: Discover Interactive Learning Software

June 17th, 2020 by Oliver Batchelor

Top Hat

ITRS is proud to announce a series of trainings on Top Hat, a web-based platform that allows students to use their smartphone, tablet, or other mobile devices to participate in and engage with in-class activities.

Top Hat’s student-centric experience engages and motivates learners with captivating virtual classroom features, interactive course content, and built-in assessment capabilities. Instructors can choose between seven different poll question types for instant feedback, create an online discussion board, explore a fun tournaments option, and access an enhanced gradebook.

To learn more about Top Hat, register for a training session or visit the ITRS Top Hat Page.

What’s New: Zoom 5.0 + Zoom in Sakai

May 13th, 2020 by Hannah Lee Otto

The Zoom tool integration in Sakai and the Zoom Desktop Client have both been updated to improve your Zoom experience. Please take a moment to note and use the updated features that will make for smoother class scheduling and meetings.

Zoom Desktop Client: Zoom 5.0

Download the Latest Version of Zoom

The Zoom Desktop Client is the application that runs your Zoom meetings once you’ve started or joined a meeting. Because the Zoom Desktop Client is therefore critical for your Zoom meetings, it is important to have the latest version installed on your computer.

Download the latest Zoom Desktop Client at https://luc.zoom.us/download. The same download link will provide you with an update to your existing Zoom Desktop Client.

New in Zoom 5.0

The following features are highlighted from Zoom’s complete release notes at https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201361963 and https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/360042599192-New-updates-for-May-3-2020

Prevent private chatting with external users.

Users will no longer be able to privately chat with other members of the same channel if they are not on the same Zoom account or organization. To continue chatting with contacts outside of their Zoom account, they can add them as external contacts.

If the host has the web setting Embed password in meeting link for one-click join disabled in the Zoom web portal, the Zoom client will no longer include the password in the URL when inviting new participants.

  • Re-enable clickable links in meeting chat
    Users will be able to send clickable links through the in-meeting chat. The link must include http or https to be clickable.

Meeting features

  • Report a user during a meeting
    The meeting host can now report a user during a meeting by clicking on the Security icon, then Report. This feature will generate a report which will be sent to the Zoom Trust and Safety team to evaluate any misuse of the platform and block a user if necessary.


New security feature to report a participant.

  • Enhancements to meeting end/leave flow
    The host will now be required to assign a new host when leaving the meeting. Additionally, the pop-up message asking if the host would like to leave or end the meeting will now be displayed by the Leave button.


Assign a New Host when Host leaves meeting.


Host option to End Meeting for All.

Zoom in Sakai: The New Zoom Pro Integration

To resolve many bugs and ambiguity with scheduling Zoom meetings through your Sakai site, the new Zoom Pro integration in Sakai now displays a detailed dashboard of your course meetings and recordings.

Schedule a Meeting.

Instead of one single Join Meeting button, course participants will now see a list of upcoming meetings. To start or join a meeting, the host or participants must select Start for the scheduled meeting.

View Previous Meetings and Upcoming Meetings.

The new Zoom integration allows you to view and access upcoming meetings and previous meetings through selecting the respective tabs at the top of the Zoom tool page.


View Upcoming Meetings and Previous Meetings with tabs.

Access Cloud Recordings.

Another convenient feature of the new integration allows for accessing cloud recordings without having to distribute a link. Course participants can go to the Cloud Recordings tab and play the recording in their browser.


Select the Cloud Recordings tab to access course recordings.

For added protection, a password will appear to copy in order to play the recording.


Select play to play recording in browser. Copy and paste the provided password to access playback.

Next Steps for You

Download Zoom 5.0 to update your Zoom Desktop client. The latest set of updates is included in Zoom 5.0, which we strongly recommend you do by going to luc.zoom.us/download. Select the blue Download button for Zoom Client for Meetings, and this version will be the latest provided by Zoom. Follow the installation cues to complete the update.


Select Download to update Zoom Desktop Client.

Zoom Resources from Loyola ITRS

Thanks for becoming refreshed with the latest from Zoom. For more Zoom resources and assistance, check out the new Zoom Guide from ITRS (Instructional Technology & Research Support) or report an issue with ITS Service Desk at ITSServiceDesk@luc.edu.



ITRS Updates: February 2020

February 10th, 2020 by Oliver Batchelor


Here is a list of upcoming events, services, and other updates from the ITRS team.  

Upcoming Events

The 5th Annual Information Technology Showcase will take place on February 20th from 9am to 3pm in the Damen Student Center on the 2nd floor. Stop by for a program featuring optional breakout sessions and service provider partner presentations on Zoom, LOCUS, Top Hat, VoiceThread, and many more. We encourage you to register for the showcase for free catered lunch and prize opportunities. 

Training & Support

We offer training sessions for SakaiPanopto, and Zoom.  

For 1:1 assistance, please feel free to utilize our drop-in hours or contact us to schedule an appointment: 



*No drop-ins will be available on February 18th and 20th due to staff conferences and events.  

Panopto Updates

January 5th, 2020 by Oliver Batchelor

Panopto 8.0

Panopto, Loyola’s official lecture capturing platform, now includes new features and functions. Users are now able to access deleted recordings through their Recycling Bin. When embedding video, there is the option to customize the embed size. Additional, the choice is now available for instructors to allow viewers to download their slides, PowerPoint, or Keynote. Coming later in the semester, users will have the option to create and edit videos through the web-based recorder, eliminating the need to install the desktop plugin.

For more information on Panopto, please visit this guide.

Rediscover VoiceThread

August 23rd, 2019 by Sarah Kentner

Are you looking for ways to enhance your course’s PowerPoints or create more interactive discussion boards?

VoiceThread may be your solution! VoiceThread allows instructors to facilitate online discussions, so students can post, comment, and collaborate with their peers in a fun and engaging way.

These conversations are not live, so the timing of discussions allows students to participate whenever and wherever it is convenient for them. Discussions may include a mixture of images, videos, documents, and media files. VoiceThread is fully integrated with Sakai. VoiceThread can be placed on a Sakai course lesson page or added to a Sakai course as a standalone tool.

For more information about VoiceThread, visit the ITRS VoiceThread information website: https://www.luc.edu/its/itrs/teachingwithtechnology/voicethread/

Course Preparation Day

July 12th, 2019 by Megan Mitchell

Come join us for a full-day of training, collaboration, and course building assistance.

DateFriday, August 16th
Time10:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
LocationInformation Commons, 2nd floor in room 230
Instructor and Student with a laptop

Attend Training

  • Attend in person or online via Zoom 
  • Each training session will be 30 minutes  
  • All sessions are introductory  

Build Your Site

  • Work on Sakai course sites individually or with other instructors 
  • Receive feedback from peers or ITRS staff 

Receive Help

  • Ask quick questions  
  • Check accessibility of course sites and course materials

Training Schedule

Each session will be 30-minutes long with a 15-minute break in between each session.

TimeSession Name
10:00 a.m.Getting Started in Sakai
10:45 a.m.Sakai Gradebook
11:30 a.m.Sakai Tests & Quizzes
12:15 p.m.Sakai Lessons and Resources
1:00 p.m.Sakai Statistics and Course Data
1:45 p.m.Using Zoom in Sakai
2:30 p.m.Course Accessibility

Summer Instructional Technologies Course

May 6th, 2019 by Megan Mitchell

Are you creating your own Sakai site? Are you looking to use technology in a purposeful way? Join us this summer to explore educational technologies already available to the Loyola community and design your own Sakai course or project site. The upcoming session begins May 20th.

ITRS developed an online course available to the Loyola community and designed to explore technology tools. This six-week course allows participants to explore features and functions of technologies available to the LUC community, like Sakai, Zoom, and Panopto. Each week, participants will learn about one or more technologies to incorporate them into their educational experiences. At the end of the course, participants will have a fully-functional Sakai site template. This course supplements the Faculty Center for Ignatian Pedagogy’s Online Teaching Course.

If you have any questions, feel free to email us at ITRS@luc.edu. Check out the Instructional Technologies Course site to register.

Learning Analytics

April 8th, 2019 by Tim Walker

Learning analytics has become an increasingly hot topic of discussion in higher education. It can be best described as the process of interpreting course data collected from online interactions with content, activities, and other individuals. The goal is to use this information to improve student engagement and learning outcomes in future courses.

ITRS is excited to announce a new learning analytics service for faculty. Beginning this month, faculty can schedule an individual consultation with a Learning Design Engineer to review the Sakai data from a previously taught course using the Statistics tool. The Learning Design Engineer can go over basic functionality of the Statistics tool, including setting criteria, running queries, and saving reports for ongoing use. Once course data has been pulled, the Learning Design Engineer will assist with defining fields, understanding record values, and interpreting report results.

Individual 30-minute consultations are now being offered on Wednesday afternoons at the Lake Shore Campus in IC 204. Services will be expanded to Water Tower and online this summer. To schedule a consultation, send an email to ITRS@luc.edu and include your preferred date/time, course title and term, and any additional information that may help the Learning Design Engineer prepare in advance. For more information, please visit Learning Analytics.