This article is for students, faculty and staff seeking information about combining course sections, and managing combined course sections in HuskyCT. HuskyCT course sites are created for each course section activated in the Student Administration System (PeopleSoft).  When instructors teach more than one section of the same course, or it’s cross-listed, it may be desirable to combine them into one HuskyCT course site. This article will provide faculty and staff with different methods for combining HuskyCT sections, and how to do so. 

Advantages to Combining Sections

Advantages to combining sections include:

  • Course content is published and maintained in one HuskyCT course site
  • Students in all combined sections access the same HuskyCT course materials
  • All students enrolled in the combined section appear in one Grade Center

Disadvantages to Combining Sections

Potential disadvantages to combining course sections include:

  • Students have visibility to all students enrolled in the combined section
  • Courses with a high number of enrolled students (>100) can be difficult to manage in Grade Center. 

Requesting Combined Courses

Course combine requests are processed by the HuskyCT team (ITS).

  • When a request is received, the team will create a new HuskyCT site to serve as the “parent” course.
  • Existing sections (included in the request) become “child” sections of the new “parent” site.
  • Once a section has been merged into a “parent”, the “child” section and all of its contents become unavailable.
Course content, grades, student-submitted assignments, discussion board posts, group work, tests, and surveys do not transfer to the parent. As such, it’s important that requests to combine courses are completed before adding content or allowing students to submit data.

Facilitating Course Requests

Instructors should use the online form, as doing so will address both activities in a single, comprehensive request. 

Accessing Combined Courses

Instructors

When course sections are merged, you will see both the parent and child sections, as shown below.

Combined section instructor display.

When accessing combined courses as an instructor, 

  • All activity should be administered from the parent section.  To reduce the possibility of publishing content to the wrong section, child sections are listed as unavailable.
  • Instructors have the option to hide the child sections from their view. For instructions on how to do so, review the article Hiding Child Sections on the My Courses Page.

Students

Students only see the section for which they are officially enrolled (i.e. one child section, matching the section they registered for in the Student Administration System).  To avoid confusion, you will not see the combined section listed under My HuskyCT Courses.

In the example pictured above, students registered in SEC001 would see the following:

Student display combined section.

When you click on your course link, you will automatically be taken to the parent section. 

Using Groups and Smart Views

The Group tool allows instructors to organize students into various groups (or teams). These groups can then be associated with specific assignments, assessments, blogs, journals, wikis, etc. Groups can also be created to facilitate communication (email) with a specific section of the course. Detailed information is available via Blackboard Help

Grade Center includes three default views: Full Grade Center, Assignments and Tests. Smart Views allow instructors to create additional views using custom filters. For example, an instructor could easily create a custom view of students for each child section.

Smart view child section.

For additional assistance with HuskyCT features and tools, visit CETL Educational Technologies in Rowe 422, call them at (860) 486-5052 or email them at edtech@uconn.edu.

For additional assistance with connectivity and login issues, course availability, enrollment and other HuskyCT course status questions,  visit the Technology Support Center in Babbidge Level 1, call them at (860) 486-4357, or email them at techsupport.uconn.edu