Brightspace: Daylight

On April 23, 2018, we will update Brightspace with a new user interface called Daylight. The update will be completed before spring session courses begin.

A new responsive design

The Daylight interface has a new look based on responsive design. This means that it adapts to different screen sizes to provide an improved user experience on laptops, tablets, and smartphones, providing improved accessibility. The new interface will have crisper fonts and icons, brighter colours used for emphasis, more whitespace, and simpler formatting. These changes are designed to make the experience more consistent and visually appealing for students. You and your students will find it much easier to stay connected and access the system from anywhere.

No functional changes

You’ll notice a new look and feel for Brightspace starting April 23, but your common workflows and the way you use Brightspace tools will not change. Courses will automatically display the new look when Daylight is turned on, but the core functionality will remain intact.

Key interface changes include:

  • Simplified navigation design that is responsive for smaller devices 
  • Wider page layout for your content so that it’s the focal point of the page 
  • New fonts, icons, colours and simpler formatting of widgets provide a consistent experience 
  • Responsive homepage layout that works best with two columns 
  • New ‘My Courses’ widget featuring rich photography in a responsive, tile-based layout
  • New image library with over 3,000 images that you can choose from for new course tiles 

What's next

Faculty and instructors can continue to develop courses for Spring 2018. Brightspace tools will automatically adjust to the new layout in April, and courses will automatically adapt the new interface when it goes live, so you don't need to take any action to accommodate this update.

Top 5 questions

1. Will Brightspace/D2L be available during the upgrade?

Yes. There will be no downtime or outage for this upgrade. On April 23rd at 9 a.m. we'll flip the switch to turn on the Daylight experience for everyone.

2. How will the move to Daylight affect my current and/or past courses?

Your current and past courses will automatically take on the new Daylight Experience look. This upgrade is a cosmetic update to the icons/text and interface of D2L to make the product more responsive on mobile devices.

3. Will I have to relearn how to use D2L?

No. For Instructors, all of the functionality, buttons, and process of creating items such as Quizzes, Discussions, Assignments, Grades, Etc. will remain the same. The way you add files/content and the tools that appear on your course navbar will also remain the same.

Students will browse content, submit assignments, complete quizzes and partake in discussions using the same methods as before. The move to Daylight is more of a cosmetic update to the icons/text and interface to make the product more responsive on mobile devices.

4. Do I have to upgrade to the Daylight Experience?

Yes, the upgrade to Daylight is system wide. Every course will be automatically upgraded.
With the August 2018 release from D2L, Daylight will be the only look and feel for Brightspace. Starting in March of 2018, the pre-Daylight style will enter maintenance mode at D2L with security and P1-level bug fixes only.

5. Where can I find more information on the upgrade to Daylight?

Software and Application Support (SAS) in Atrium 107 is your support space for all things Brightspace, including Daylight. We'll have a Daylight demonstration running in the space with drop-in demos available, videos on display, and additional handouts ready to go.

Faculty may also choose to request access to the D2L test server, to explore Daylight at your own pace, with your own content. 

All of our PDF and video guides are now being updated to the Daylight look and feel. As we were waiting on this update, we will now be increasing the number of video resources over the summer to support Brightspace users. For instructors, we will be offering numerous information sessions on Daylight starting in March.