How to Edit and Manage your Engineering Course Website

Course Website Folders

All Engineering courses being offered for a given term have a corresponding folder created on the courses.engr.illinois.edu server within 2 business days of when the course is added to the course catalog. The course directory can be accessed through the URL http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/XXX### where "XXX" is the course subject code and "###" is the course number. Previous semester courses can be accessed by adding the 2 letter semester (sp, su, fa) and 4 digit year to the URL. For example: cs173 Spring 2012 can be seen at http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/cs173/sp2012. 

Access to the course website folders

Access for course staff is granted through the class staff Active Directiry (AD) groups named subj-###-stf where "subj" is the course subject code (e.g. cs, ece, info, me) and "###" is the course number. These groups are not automatically populated with course staff, but can be populated by the "Class Administration" portal tool at http://my.engr.illinois.edu/ (you may substitute your departmental portal address in this URL as well – e.g. http://my.cs.illinois.edu/)

Creating content

There are a variety of ways to add content to a course website directory

  • Through a Windows share you can mount on your desktop system (\\courses.engr.illinois.edu\ or for Mac smb://courses.engr.illinois.edu)
  • Linux command line access by using an SSH client to connect to ssh.courses.engr.illinois.edu with your NetID and Active Directory password and navigating to /courses and the appropriate course directory
  • SFTP to sftp.courses.engr.illinois.edu:/courses/ with your NetID and your Active Directory password
  • Using the WebEdit portal at http://my.engr.illinois.edu/webedit (you may substitute your departmental portal address in this URL as well – e.g. http://my.ece.illinois.edu/webedit)

Course folder layout

The course folders contain semester specific folders such as sp2017, fa2018 etc. You can put your website files in the appropriate folder for your semester course, or you can put your files directly in the course folder. In either case, your website will be available at http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/XXX### for the current semester. If you are the only person who teaches the course, it might be convenient to put your files in the main folder. If the course is not taught by the same person each semester, it is best to put the website files in the semester specific folder, or move them there at the end of the semester.

Two additional folders are provided in the web folder for course staff to share materials with each other and with students.

  • The folder named "private" is restricted to course staff.
  • The folder named "secure" is restricted to course staff and students registered for the class.

Access is controlled through AD groups. The private folder can be accessed by members of the staff group as mentioned above. The securey folder can be accessed by students in the student course groups which are automatically populated with students registered for the class. Students have read-only access to the secure folder, and only via a web browser. Course staff have write access to both the private and secure folders.

Copying content from a previous semester

The WebEdit portal at http://my.engr.illinois.edu/webedit (you may substitute your departmental portal address in this URL as well – e.g. http://my.ece.illinois.edu/webedit) has a function to copy the content from a previous semester into the current semester. This function will not copy the contents of the "private" or "secure" directories of the previous semester.

Course website addresses

The content for each course can be viewed through at a URL from courses.engr.illinois.edu.
The URL for courses will automatically default to the current semester and will be in the form http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/XXX### where "XXX" is the course subject code and "###" is the course number. Previous semester courses can be accessed by adding the 2 letter semester (sp, su, fa) and 4 digit year to the URL. For example: cs173 Spring 2012 can be seen at http://courses.engr.illinois.edu/cs173/sp2012.

Removing or restricting content

For all terms of the course, the current course staff have the permission to remove or restrict the content of the course. If the current instructor wishes to remove or restrict content from previous semesters (e.g. quiz answers, homework hints, etc.), s/he may remove/restrict the content of data or delegate that task to a member of the course staff group. Previous instructors will not have rights to restrict content on the course websites, unless s/he is the current instructor for that course.

Private folder

The private folder under each term subdirectory of a course directory can only be read/modified by the current course staff group. This provides a mechanism to restrict content to only the course staff.

Secure folder

The secure folder under each term subdirectory of a course directory can only be modified by the current course staff group, and only read by the current student group for that course. This provides a mechanism to restrict content to the current students of the course. Sharing exam solutions, quiz statistics, homework hints, and similar course materials are appropriately stored in the secure folder.

Archived content

Course website materials for previous semesters will remain on the courses.engr.illinois.edu website. The most recent course staff (current course staff if that course is being offered in the current term) will have access to the content. Previous course staff will not have permissions to modify the content of the course website. Because access control will change from semester to semester, all current course instructors will be notified before the end of the term to remove any intellectual property or material that should not be shared with future course staff. This is particularly relevant for courses that have different instructors frequently.

Change Over of Course Directory Control

Before the end of every term, each current course instructor will be informed of a change to access control of the current course directory to the new instructors for that course. In the case where the instructor for a particular course does not change, this notice will be less important than the cases where the instructor of a particular course will be different the next time it is offered. It is possible that when the instructor for a particular course changes, the new instructor may be given access to the course directory to prepare website materials. Permission from the current instructor will be sought and recorded in these cases.

After the term for a particular course has ended, and before the next term in which that particular course is being offered begins, the course staff groups will be updated to remove all the former course staff, and the new instructor will be given access to the course directory. At that point, the course staff group members from the previous semester will no longer have access to the content in the course directory.

Get Help

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