Enhancing Student Learning and Engagement Through Moodle

The Five College Blended Learning Program is hosting a workshop on enhancing student learning and engagement through Moodle.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

4:30-6 p.m.

Main location:
Amherst College, Webster 102

Satellite locations with video conferencing:
Hampshire College, FPH Faculty Lounge
Smith College, Seelye Hall B4

Register Now »

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17. March 2015 by Applications and Web Services
Categories: Events, Moodle Tips, Professional Development, Workshops | Comments Off

Text Formatting Changes on TheHub

For the last 8 years or so, TheHub has allowed formatted text on evaluations.  This includes BOLD, italics, underlining and many others.  We realize the need for formatting to properly cite works as well as the ability for superscripts or subscripts to be used in math, chemistry or other sciences.

However, one of the problems we have with evaluations on TheHub is lack of consistency in fonts, colors, line spacing, etc.  This is exacerbated considering that many like to write their evaluations offline using Word or other editor, and then cut/paste the formatted text into TheHub.  By doing so, this introduces a lot of variability in fonts, line spacing and more – which TheHub has been preserving.

Starting March 30, 2015, TheHub will begin to strip this formatting out.  Some examples of why this is important:

A course description with incredibly small font from MS Word:

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 2.38.15 PM

A self-evaluation with large vertical line spacing:

Screen Shot 2015-03-13 at 3.13.16 PM


In summary, by eliminating all formatting except for:

  • bold
  • italic
  • underline
  • superscripts/subscripts

we will improve the consistency of evaluations for students, faculty and staff who need to read these on a regular basis.

13. March 2015 by Jeff Butera
Categories: TheHub, Uncategorized | Tags: | Comments Off

Getting Rid of Adware on Your Mac

We’ve seen a few instances this week of Mac’s with annoying ads and rogue search engines overtaking browsers. If your Mac is running 10.7 or later, we’ve got a tool to help you out.

Mac users haven’t had to think a whole lot about protecting their computers from malware, and we don’t generally recommend installing antivirus software. That’s because the threats are few and far between, they’re generally addressed by Apple within a brief timeframe, and the downside of antivirus software is that it slows down your computer. This approach does mean that you may occasionally have to run manual scans on your computer–any time you notice unusual computer behavior that could be due to malware.

The issues we’ve been seeing lately are confined to browsers: excessive ads or warning messages may pop up, or the default search engine may have been switched and now returns only ads. There is no indication that these infections do anything beyond the obvious: no key logging or opening up your computer for more sinister uses.

If you think that your browser might have been infected and you are running OS X 10.7 or later, download AdwareMedic and then have it scan your computer. If you’re using an older version of the system and think you might be affected, contact the help desk or submit an IT Ticket. (To find out what version of the system you’re running select “About This Mac” from the Apple menu.)

For a little extra security, we also recommend occasionally running a full malware scan on your computer. Our recommend scanner, ClamXav, runs on 10.6 and later. One note about using it: before scanning, use ClamXav/Preferences/Quarantine to set up a quarantine folder–otherwise you will have to run the scan a second time to actually remove any infection.

11. March 2015 by Kate, School Support Specialist
Categories: TechTips | Tags: , , | Comments Off

Gmail Scam

We’ve seen a few people get taken in by a Gmail phishing scheme this week. If you get an email from a Gmail user with a link to a document, think twice before clicking and entering your username and password.

This latest scam is pretty straightforward, but it appears to be catching quite a few people. If you get the email and have a Gmail account, contacts in your address book will be harvested and everyone in it will receive a message from you with a link to a similar page. We don’t know what else is done with the username and password, but it’s never good to have a password compromised.

As always, prevention is the best medicine. Think before you click, and if you have any doubts confirm with the sender before accessing a link. Never enter your username and password on an unknown web page.

You’ll know if you’ve fallen for this scam because you’ll hear back from some people in your address book, and you may have some bounced messages that you don’t remember sending. If you’ve been scammed, change your Gmail password right away. If you use a similar password for other accounts it’s best to change those passwords as well. Finally, sending out a message to all of your Gmail address book contacts advising them to ignore the scam message

05. March 2015 by Kate, School Support Specialist
Categories: Security, TechTips | Tags: , , , | Comments Off

Getting It Done! Wednesday, February 25, 12-1 p.m., FPH 102

Join Asha Kinney from IT and Alana Kumbier from the Library for some practical tips on how to keep up with your work and lower your stress level at the same time. They will share a strategy based on the book “Getting Things Done” for staying organized and avoiding wasted time and energy. They’ll also demo some great online tools for staying organized like Trello and Google Calendar. Free lunch!

Wednesday, February 25
12-1 p.m.
FPH 102

23. February 2015 by Asha Kinney
Categories: Events, Workshops | Tags: | Comments Off

Disabling the Click-to-Create Feature in Zimbra

In the old version of Zimbra a double-click would bring up the “QuickAdd Appointment” dialog, but the new web version brings it up any time you single-click on an empty calendar space. To stop it from doing this you have to turn off the QuickAdd feature:

  1. Open up Zimbra in your web browser and click on the “Preferences” tab.
  2. Select “Calendar” from the pane on the left.
  3. In the “Creating Appointments” section, uncheck “Use the QuickAdd dialog when creating new appointments.”
  4. Save your changes by clicking the “Save” button at the top left.

Once you’ve made this change you will be presented with the larger appointment window when you double-click or drag out an appointment.

19. February 2015 by Kate, School Support Specialist
Categories: TechTips | Tags: | Comments Off

Email All Together Now

If you access your email from multiple devices or programs, you might find that you have several different folders containing sent mail. Here’s how to combine them.

Email programs keep a copy of the messages that you send and store them in a sent mail folder. Unfortunately there’s no industry standard for the name of this folder, so sent mail often gets split between multiple folders. If you’ve been at Hampshire for several years you may have a folder called “sent-mail” as well as “Sent” or “Sent Messages.” It’s handy to set up your email on every device you use to save sent mail to the same folder.

One note: most people on campus store their email up on the server using a protocol called “IMAP.” If instead you “POP” your email in Thunderbird you won’t be able to combine your sent folder. To check whether you’re POP or IMAP, in Thunderbird select “Tools→Account Settings,” select “Server Settings” and check the “Server Type.” If you only use Webmail to access your mail then you don’t have to worry about this.

Finding your Sent Mail Folders
The first step is to find out where your various email programs are storing sent mail. What’s tricky is that many mail programs, including Thunderbird and Webmail, show the name “Sent” for wherever they are storing sent mail, even if the actual folder has a completely different name. To see what the folder’s real name is you have to go behind the scenes.

  • In Webmail, select “Settings,” and then “Special Folders.”
  • In Thunderbird, select “Tools→Account Settings,” and then select “Copies and Folders.” Your sent mail folder is listed in the top section on the right.
  • On an iPhone or iPad, go to “Settings,” and then “Mail, Contacts, Calendars.” Select your Hampshire account, and then select it again. Scroll down and select “Advanced,” and look in the “Mailbox Behaviors” section. To combine mail folders you will have to choose a folder in the “On the Server” section.
  • If you use another app for email, K-9 on Android, for instance, you can usually find this information using a web search for the name of the program and “sent mail folder.”

Some mail programs do not allow you to specify the sent mail folder.

Choosing your Sent Mail Folder
It doesn’t really matter which folder you decide to use for sent mail, unless one of the programs you use doesn’t let you specify; in that case, use whatever folder it uses.

Once you decide which mail folder you’re going to use, go back to each mail program and select that folder as your sent message folder.

Moving Messages into Your Unified Sent Mail Folder
Now that all your future sent messages are going to one sent folder, you may want to consider moving old sent messages into that one folder as well. This is only worth it if you refer to your sent messages frequently. To move them, use either Webmail or Thunderbird. Select all the messages you want to move, and then drag them or right-click on them to move them to the unified sent mail folder.

12. February 2015 by Kate, School Support Specialist
Categories: TechTips | Tags: , | Comments Off

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