Instructor Information

This page contains information pertaining to the instructor/maintainer role in OWL.

For further technical assistance with OWL, please see the Getting Help page for help and support options: external link:


OWL Display Layout

  1. My Workspace is your private repository within OWL. When you first log in, it is your default Active Site. Your current active site is highlighted in white.
  2. Tabs across the top of the display represent sites to which you have access. To change which tabs display, see the "Preferences" section under My Workspace Tools.
  3. If you have access to several sites, additional sites that you are added to will be grouped under "More Sites." You can also add a New Site through this menu.
  4. As you select different tabs (sites, courses, projects), the left-hand menu will change according to the tools available in that site. Instructor_DisplayLayout-a.png

Please see the Instructor Quick-start Guide for more information about the display layout.

OWL Tools

Please see the OWL Tools documentation page for more information on specific tools. Continue to read below for information on Tools when setting up a course or a project site.

Setting up Sites

Creating a course site

Before the students can see your OWL site, the instructor must create the course site. This site will act as a space for the students and instructor to communicate and engage in online learning.

You can create course sites in OWL based on enrollment information from the Office of the Registrar. Students are automatically added to your site upon creation to the course roster. If you do not yet have access to your courses, please contact your faculty.

If this is your first time setting up a course site, please follow the Creating Your Course Site - Introduction to familiarize yourself with OWL and quickly set up your course site.

  1. Open your Account Menu by clicking on the profile icon on the top right. Click on +Add New Site to open the "Worksite Setup" page.Instructor_Setup01-a.png
  2. Select "Course Site," then select the academic term corresponding to your course. Click Continue.Instructor_Setup02-a.png
  3. The enrollment information for the courses you have access to will appear as course rosters.
    • a. Select one of your course rosters from the list. Do not select more than one course roster! Selecting multiple courses rosters will combine them into one course site. Combining multiple sections in one site can be useful if you are teaching a course with multiple labs or tutorial sections, or if you are teaching a cross-listed course.
    • b. OWL will automatically detect if a site already exists; if this is the case, it will alert you with a message. If you would still like to proceed with a new site, click select anyway.
    • c. (Optional) You can also choose to use the Official Description provided by the course calendar.Instructor_Setup03-a.png
  4. Click Continue to proceed to the "Course Information" page.
    • (Optional) You can set up the language, the site description displayed in the homepage, the contact information, and other miscellaneous information.
    • By default, your name appears in the "Site Contact Name" field. This information is required.
  5. Click Continue to proceed to the "Course Site Tools" menu.
    • Select the tools you want on the left menu. On the right, you will see the tools you have enabled with the option to remove them.
    • For more information on individual tools, please visit the OWL Tools page. Instructor_Setup04-a.png
    • Click Continue to proceed.
  6. You can control accessibility to your site through the "Course Site Access" page.
    • A published site can be accessed by anyone enrolled, including students. An unpublished site can only be accessed by maintainers, such as the Instructor, Secondary Instructor(s), and Grade Administrator(s).
    • Select "Leave Unpublished" if you will be adding content and making more changes to your site; otherwise, you may publish as soon as the site is created.Instructor_Setup05-a.png
    • See Manage Access for more information on the additional settings.
  7. Click Continue when finished. You will be asked to confirm your settings for your site setup. Review these carefully and click Create Site when satisfied.

Creating a development/project site

In addition to course sites, OWL also allows users to create project sites in which they can collaborate with peers, develop a future course, or simply test OWL's features. To set up a project site follow the steps below:

  1. Log into OWL by going to external link:
    • Once logged in, you should be on the My Workspace page
  2. Select Worksite setup from the left side of the screen
  3. Click the New link near the top of the screen
  4. Select "project site" and click Continue
  5. Enter a title and some quick text about the site (you can edit this later) and click Continue
  6. Select any tools you want to include in the course (again you can edit these later).
  7. Select whether to Publish your site or leave as draft, and set the access settings.
  8. Set Public Listing to "Do not display in Site Browser" and Membership Control to "Limit to official…" and click Continue
  9. Review your selections
  10. Click Create Site

Enabling LaTeX Math Display

OWL supports the use of LaTeX Math functions that allow for easy commands to display mathematical equations. By default, LaTeX Math display is turned off; You need to enable it manually through Site Info and then specify which tools will use it in the Edit Tools menu.

What is LaTeX? How do I work with it?

LaTeX is a typesetting programming language that provides a standard format to documents, particularly used for technical and scientific papers.

To learn more about LaTeX and how to work with it, please consult the official [latex-project|external link:] website.

Please note that only the "equation" environments are possible in OWL: no other document types of LaTeX will work.

Enabling LaTeX Math

You can add LaTeX to your OWL site after the site creation process. If you have not yet created your course site, please read the documentation above.

Once your site is created,

  1. Go to your site and click on Site Info in the lefthand menu.
  2. On the top menu, click on Edit Site Information and check the LaTeX option box. Click Continue, then click Finish on the next page. Instructor_latex-a.png
  3. To actually use LaTeX, you need to enable LaTeX for each individual tool(s) that will use it. On the top menu, click on Edit Tools and check the "LaTeX" box next to the specified tools you would like to enable LaTeX Math for. Instructor_latexTools-a.png

Known Issues with LaTeX Math Display in OWL

Managing Content

Importing Content from Existing Site

Once you've set up your course or project site, it is possible to then import content from an already existing course or project site into the newly created site.

Getting Started

Before importing content to a new site, it is first necessary to enable all the tools used in the old site; setting up these tools effectively creates empty vessels into which new content is imported. If, for example, you used the Resources, Lessons, Gradebook, and Forums tools in your old site, you must first enable those tools in the new site before you can import the old content contained within them. For more information on setting up tools, please see the Edit Tools section in the Site Info documentation.

Importing Content

Once you've set up an empty instance of each tool used in the site from which you are importing content, continue with the following steps:

  1. Navigate to the Site Info tool and click on Import from Site from the menu bar at the top.
  2. On the "Import Data" page, select one of the following:
    1. I would like to replace my data: Use this option if you want the imported data to overwrite the existing data. This method only allows you to select one site from which to import data.
    2. I would like to merge my data: Use this option if you want the imported data to merge with the existing data. This method allows you to select multiple sites from which to import data.
    3. I would like to merge my user(s): Use this option if you want to import the participant roster from another site. This method does not import roster-provided users.
  3. Check the box next to the site that contains the material you wish to import. Click Continue.It is possible to import content from multiple courses at once
  4. Under the name of the site(s) you selected, check the box next to each tool that contains source material you wish to import. Click Finish. If a box is greyed out, it means the corresponding tool is not enabled in that site.Please be patient as the content is imported; this may take a few minutes.

General Notes

Transferring & Downloading Content

For detailed instructions on how to transfer and import old course content, see the Transferring and Downloading Content documentation page.


Submitting Course Grades

How to submit course grades from OWL:

  1. Log into OWL (external link: and navigate to your course site
  2. Choose GRADEBOOK (or MARKBOOK) from the left-hand side toolbar
  3. Ensure all necessary Gradebook items under the Gradebook Items Summary section of the page have been graded and are set to be Included in Course Grade
  4. Click Course Grades from the top
  5. Select the specific course section in the View drop-down menu under the Grading Table heading (i.e. BSKTWEAV 1020B 001 SU16)
  6. Review the list of students and course grades for accuracy
  7. Click Submit

Note: For courses with multiple sections or that are cross-listed, the courses grades will need to be submitted one section at a time (i.e. BSKTWEAV 1025B 001 SU16 then BSKTWEAV 1025B 002 SU16)


What happens when I hit submit?

Once you submit your final course grades, the grades are submitted for approval by the section's Grade Admin. An email notification will be sent to your Grade Admin, who will then review and approve the grades. Once approved, OWL securely transfers the grades to the Office of the Registrar.

Can I resubmit course grades?

If you have made any grade adjustments after you have submitted course grades, you are still able to re-submit course grades by repeating the process above. Your Grade Admin will then re-approve the latest course grades.

My course grades have decimal points? How can I round them?

Course grades in OWL will retain the decimal point, but once you submit your course grades to the Office of the Registrar, the grades are automatically rounded up or down to a whole number.

How can I get a PDF or printed version of my course grades?

Once you submit your course grades, you will be able to click on the View Report (PDF) link to download and print a copy of your submitted course grades.

Approving Course Grades

Approving course grades in OWL:

  1. Log into OWL (external link: and navigate to the appropriate course site (if you can't find the course site that you're looking for, please see the FAQ section below)
  2. Choose GRADEBOOK (or MARKBOOK) from the left side toolbar
  3. Choose Course Grades from the top of the Gradebook page
  4. Select the specific course section (e.g. BSKTWEAV 1020B 001 SU16) from the View drop-down menu under the Grading Table heading
  5. Click the View Report (PDF) link to review the course grades for accuracy
  6. Click Approve when you are satisfied

Note: For courses with multiple sections or that are cross-listed, the courses grades will need to be submitted one section at a time (e.g. BSKTWEAV 1025B 001 SU16, then BSKTWEAV 1025B 002 SU16).


How will I know when course grades are ready to be approved?

When course grades have been submitted for approval by an instructor, you should receive an email with a subject line starting with "OWL Course Grade Submission Notice" followed by the course title. The email will contain the username of the instructor who submitted the course grades for approval, a link to the site, and instructions for approving the course grades similar to the steps listed above.

How do I get to a course in OWL?

Once you've logged into OWL (external link:, the course sites that you are enrolled in are located across the top of the page and under the "More Sites" site drawer. In the site drawer, sites are organized by term and type. You can use the search box to filter the list using any part of the site's title. If you received an "OWL Course Grade Submission Notice" email for the course, you can click on the link in the email, which will take you directly to the course site in OWL.

Please note that you will need to be added by the Department Chair as a Grade Admin in the Staff/Faculty Extranet (external link: Changes in the Extranet may take up to 24 hours before the sections appear in OWL. For more information please visit the following link (external link:

I am setup as a Grade Admin in Extranet, but I can't find the course site that I'm looking for?

Sometimes the OWL course site hasn't been created yet by the instructor. As the Grade Admin, you can create the course site, so you can submit final course grades from it. For assistance creating a course site, please follow the steps found in OWL Documentation (see Instructor, then scroll down to "Creating a course site").

If you are still missing or cannot locate a course site, please email for assistance.

Changes in Extranet may take up to 24 hours before the sections appear in OWL.