The primary use of GauchoSpace is to facilitate learning for UCSB academic courses. We do create some collaborative project sites that have an academic or department-related purpose when they are requested.
All instructors of course websites may receive notices of GauchoSpace server maintenance or upgrade activities.
Technical support is provided via a help ticket submission form. We monitor and respond to help requests during regular business hours: Monday - Friday, 8:00am-5:00pm. Additional support is available over Zoom by submitting a help request for a Zoom consultation scheduled Monday - Friday, 10:00am - 4:00pm.
The GauchoSpace team may need to audit, investigate and troubleshoot course websites when handling support requests and other reports of problems. Occasionally when there is a serious issue with a course website and we are not able to contact the instructor, we may correct problems on a course website. When this occurs, the instructor will always be sent an email.
The majority of access to GauchoSpace is done via the UCSBnetID. Instructors can also create accounts for users with external email addresses. When identity data changes, our systems will react to changes in the following circumstances:
- If you change your last name in Identity systems, it will be updated when you log in to GauchoSpace.
- If you change your UCSBnetID or if you leave and come back and your UCSBnetID changes, we try to detect this and fix it automatically. You might be told to try logging in again.
- We pre-load all students and TAs and instructors who are part of courses in GauchoSpace. If you are a staff member, when you login, your account will be created. A common problem is an instructor might be wanting to add a staff person to the course site and that staff person hasn't yet logged into GauchoSpace, thus the instructor can't find the person in the search.
- You cannot change your first or last name in GauchoSpace, you must go through identity services to change your first name. Identity services also provides instructions for changing your last name within the University databases.
- If you had an account without a PERM number, but later establish a perm number (for example, an extension student who becomes a traditional student) we will need to manually input your PERM in our system to update your account.
The primary GauchoSpace site is accessible by the entire internet. All traffic goes over https (port 443), which ensures data is encrypted from your computer to our server. GauchoSpace content on our oldest archived server (Fall 2011 - Summer 2013) is limited to campus access or access via the campus VPN.
Most modern web browsers that are updated to a current version should work fine on GauchoSpace (with the exception of Internet Explorer). We generally suggest using Firefox or Chrome.
By default, course websites only add students who are enrolled via GOLD. An instructor can manually add other students or TAs to the course. An instructor can also add non-UCSB users to their GauchoSpace course website.
GauchoSpace does not allow anonymous guest access.
Students' names will appear to other students in numerous locations of a course website, including the participants link, in discussion forum posts and replies, chats, and other activities.
By default, students' e-mail addresses are only visible to instructors and TAs in their courses; however, a student can change their profile to allow the students in their courses to see their email address.
Instructors and Editing TAs are able to run activity reports showing course website access and can view detailed logs of course activity.
the Student Code of Conduct. Under the Code, grounds for discipline include : “Copying for any commercial purpose handouts, readers or other course materials provided by an instructor as part of a University of California course unless authorized by the University in advance and explicitly permitted by the course instructor or the copyright holder in writing (if the instructor is not the copyright holder)" (Section 102.23).
You may copy content from one course website to another if you are the instructor or an Editing TA in that course, by using the GauchoSpace import function.
You can request imported content from older archived servers (housing course sites prior to Spring 2015) by submitting a help ticket.
If you want to use materials from another instructor's course website, that instructor can either add you as an instructor to that course website (if it is on the current server) then you can use the import method, or the instructor can submit a help ticket confirming that you may use his/her materials (for archived courses, before Summer 2015).
If you have a Moodle course website from another institution, the GauchoSpace team will need to assist you in restoring this website. We need to ensure no student data is copied into our system from elsewhere.
Currently there is no limit for the size of GauchoSpace sites. The maximum file size you can upload to a site is 256 MB.
Because of file size limitations and variations in browser and plug-in use, GauchoSpace doesn't handle large video files well. We suggest using the GauchoCast (Panopto) block or hosting these in an external location, such as Box, and linking to them in your GauchoSpace site.
We back up a replicated GauchoSpace database daily in the early morning (approximately 3:00 am) and incrementally every hour. We backup the files daily in the early morning. These backups are to recover the entire system in case of a catastrophic failure.
If you delete some resources or activities from your course website, you are able to use the Recycle bin to restore them for up to 35 days, after which time that data will be permanently deleted.
The gradebook has a grade history report which can be used to retrieve grade data if grades are mistakenly overwritten. Beginning in Summer 2016, this data will only be preserved for 150 days.
Older course websites will be accessible to the instructor for at least five years, either on the primary GauchoSpace server or an archived server. After five years, we may purge older sites. You may backup your course website and download it to your computer for future use. We recommend that instructors always export a spreadsheet of the course grades at the end of each quarter for their personal records.
After two quarters have passed the GauchoSpace teams sets all course websites to be hidden from students. For instance, during Fall a student would see his/her Summer course websites but not their Spring course websites. An instructor may override this at any point in time by hiding or making a course site visible.
- Web Logs - recorded for diagnostic purposes and troubleshooting by the GauchoSpace team.
- Moodle/GauchoSpace Logs - Moodle automatically logs all activities, such as accessing a course site, submitting an assignment or downloading a file. This data includes timestamp and IP address and is accessible to the instructors and TAs in the course and the GauchoSpace administrators. Students can view access to their own activity in a course if the instructor enables that access.
- Student success tools - some tools, such as the Analytics Graphs Reports, Completion Progress Block, and Trending Now, use student activity logs in order to present analytic information to instructors in order to guide instruction for student success in courses
- Splunk Server Logs - used by the GauchoSpace team to monitor system and software performance and reliability.
- Google Analytics - The GauchoSpace team uses Google Analytics to track trends in usage of the system, locations, and types of devices and browsers used. This data helps us determine overall system use and performance metrics.
We use Google Analytics to measure website access, including historical trends. This data is anonymized and only accessed and utilized used by the GauchoSpace development and support staff.
We support Google Drive integration for file uploads, allowing an instructor or student to log into their Drive account in order to upload files to GauchoSpace. This requires using a UCSB Google Connect account.
We use Google's APIs for document conversion for assignment uploads, which allows any assignment submissions uploaded in other formats to be converted into PDFs in order to be graded using the assignment grader interface.
We support Google's Assignment activity which integrates with GauchoSpace via an LTI integration. This tool allows instructors to create and grade assignments using an online workflow centered around Google Docs.
Requests for GauchoSpace application enhancements or new features are submitted by faculty and students via the GauchoSpace help ticketing system. The evaluation process is overseen by the Director of Instructional Technologies and the Instructional Applications Operational Expert, with guidance from the LMS Developers and our graduate student Instructional Design Assistants. The following criteria are weighed when evaluating and prioritizing requests:
- potential campus impact
- development and support resources
- technical difficulty of implementation
- the Moodle roadmap
After evaluating a request, we will take action on it by either recording it internally as an option for potential UCSB customization and development, or else submitting a request with the Moodle community for potential implementation in the core LMS software. Moodle requests and bug trackers include features that encourage development, including voting, commenting and tracking. Requesters will be updated of any relevant development changes via our help ticketing system.
In some cases, instructors may wish to integrate third-party tools into their GauchoSpace course sites, such as homework applications provided by a textbook publisher. In many cases, instructors are able to add such tools to their own course sites using the "External Tool" activity. In cases that require administrator integration, we try to help accommodate the instructor or department, upon review. For these requests, please submit a help ticket or send an email to email@example.com.
- Instructors should consider relevant UCSB policy guidelines for the use of third-party tools and consult with their department if uncertain of the use of a particular application. Integration of third-party tools into GauchoSpace should not be considered endorsement nor recommendation of the application use. Applications requiring agreement to terms-of-service should be approved by the Contracts & Purchasing Unit of Procurement Services.
- Requests for integration should originate from an instructor or department, rather than the third-party software provider.
- Generally, we only support integrations that utilize the uniform learning technology interoperability (LTI) standard, not those that require installing custom code.
- GauchoSpace staff will provide support for the integration, but not the third-party application itself.