Thing 5: Push notifications and personalisation – Five Things you can do with the VLE app

We’ve reached the end of the week and the end of our ‘Five Things you can do with the VLE app series’. If you’ve missed the other ‘Things’ we’ve covered this week, don’t worry – we’ll be leaving these posts up on our blog, and you can use the links at the bottom of this post to go back through Things 1 to 4. Completely new to these posts and didn’t even realise there was an app? Here’s some quick instructions on how to download it:

  1. Install “Blackboard Mobile Learn” from your iTunes or Google Play app stores.
  2. Open the app and search for University of York.
  3. Select University of York from the list that appears. Do not select York University (that’s in Canada).
  4. Log in using the username and password you normally use to access Yorkshare.

Thing 5: Notifications and personalisation

Technically, today’s ‘Thing’ is two things – but it means that everything fits into one week and you don’t miss out on learning about one of the app’s features. The ability to receive push notifications for new announcements is currently only available for iOS, but Android users can still check announcement updates using the ‘Dashboard’ in the app, as well as being alerted to new content when inside the app by small number icons that appear next to modules with new content or new announcements.

If you’re on an iPad or iPhone, you would need to make sure that push notifications for the app are switched on in your phone’s main settings and the app must be logged in and running in the background for these to work. If you don’t want to have the app permanently running in the background, you can still catch up with announcements from your courses by logging in to the app and selecting ‘Dashboard’ to check up on any announcements you might have missed.

iPhone screenshot of Dashboard feature in VLE app.

What your dashboard will look like in the VLE app. The most recent announcements will display first. Click image to enlarge.

If you’ve been using the app this week, you’ll have noticed that the way modules are displayed is very different to the desktop version of the VLE. You can personalise your list of modules by changing the colours, reordering them and hiding old modules by clicking on the ‘Edit’ button in the top right hand corner of your module list. While this will change things around in the app, it doesn’t reorder your modules when you log in to the desktop VLE, so be aware that there could be some differences between the two if you decide to personalise your module list in the app.

Screenshot of the module list in edit mode in the VLE app.

Change colours and hide old modules in edit mode. Click image to enlarge


That’s it!

We’ve reached the end of our ‘Five Things you can do with the VLE app’ series and for those who have been following us all week, we hope you’ve found out some useful information you didn’t know before and are considering using the app on a regular basis.  You can tweet us at @UoY_Yorkshare or add #yorkshareapp to your tweets so we can find them.

Next week, we’ll be asking you what you think of the app by running some polls on our blog and scanning the Twittersphere for both good and bad feedback and putting together a Storify of the tweets. We’ll keep our Five Things posts up on the blog, so spread the word to your friends and tutors about how the app might be useful.

Thank you to all of the people who have downloaded the app this week and sent us feedback. We’re always happy to hear from you!

Did you miss the other posts in this series? Click the link at the very bottom of this post to scroll back through Things 1 to 4.

Visit the dedicated page on our website for the Yorkshare Mobile App.

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