Resources for Instructors and TAs

If you are an instructor for a class or a graduate student TA'ing for a class, there are a number of things you need to know about computing resources to make your class go smoothly.

Who provides instructional computing resources for your class

ACMS provides instructional computing resources for most classes. The first thing you should do is go to the ACMS web site (http://acms.ucsd.edu) and review the Faculty section. If your course will use any ACMS services (including using the workstations in the basement labs), you must fill out a CINFO (Course Information Request) form. This should be done well in advance of the beginning of the course. TAs, don't assume that the instructor of the course has done this. If you are given significant responsibility for ensuring the course runs smoothly, you should confirm that a CINFO form has been entered for the course. If you have any questions about ACMS managed services, please contact their group that works with instructors at acms-consult@ucsd.edu.

Although ACMS manages the computing resources for most courses, some specialized courses will have their computing resources managed by CSEHelp. These courses are mainly the courses held in the embedded systems lab or use other specialized hardware (such as GPUs).

Some instructors have a particular computing environment necessary for teaching their class and thus may provide their own computing environment if they so chose.

Learning management systems

One thing to consider for your course is whether you want to use a learning management system. A learning management system provides you with a web presence for your class. This includes an area to put your syllabus and other course materials, discussion forums and other forms of interactivity for the students. There are two learning management systems available. You may choose whichever one meets your needs best. TritonEd is available from ACMS.  Moodle is available from CSEHelp. If you wish to use TritonEd, please have the instructor visit tritoned.ucsd.edu to make their course available. As of Spring Quarter 2017, a CINFO form is no longer needed to request a TritonEd course site. If you wish to use Moodle, please contact CSEHelp.

Class web sites

Each quarter CSEHelp creates web space for simple HTML/PHP based web sites for all regular CSE classes.  If you prefer setting up your own simple web site as opposed to using a learning management system.  You may use this web space.

See setting up a class web web site for details.

These class web sites are linked to by the department web site.  If you would like to host your course materials in a different place, you can ask CSEHelp to point the department web site at your alternate location or you can place an index.html with a redirect in it in the course web space.

Mailing lists

If you need a mailing list for your class, you have several choices:

  1. Use the forums feature in a learning management system (Moodle or TritonEd).
  2. Send a request to support@eng.ucsd.edu to create a Google group for you.
  3. Create a mailing list on the campus mailing list server.  See http://blink.ucsd.edu/technology/email/services/lists/MM-admin.html for details.

Software for your students

If you are teaching a class that requires Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Visual Studio (or other MSDNAA software) or VMware, CSEHelp can provide those pieces of software to your students through the e-academy service. Just send CSEHelp a list of your students (name and PID or UCSD E-mail address) and your students will receive an E-mail message with information on how to obtain the software. You can send your complete student list, if everyone will need the software, or a list of just the students needing the software (i.e. people with Macintosh computers may need all three pieces of software if Microsoft Visual Studio is required for the class).

All other software needed for your class will be provided by the group maintaining the lab your are using (ACMS or CSEHelp). Or, the students will be required to purchase the software if it is not available through ACMS or CSEHelp.

Specialized labs/servers

If your class is using a specialized lab (such as the embedded systems lab) for your class or using a server that CSEHelp is managing for your class, please touch base with CSEHelp before the beginning of the quarter to ensure that everything is set up properly for your class.  Things are very busy during the first few weeks of the quarter.  If everything is not set up in advance, things may not be ready for your students for a few sessions.

Items that commonly need to be set up:

  • Software.  Do you need a new piece of software or a new version of some previously used software this quarter?  New software for workstations will be set up on one workstation for the instructor or TA to test.  Once it is working as desired, it will be rolled out to the rest of the workstations.
  • Hardware.  Do you have a new device you need use with the computer (such as a new embedded system or a new type of cell phone)?  You will need to loan one of the devices to CSEHelp along with the driver files or a pointer to where the drivers can be downloaded on the Internet.
  • Student accounts.  All students will get accounts on the class server and workstations when we know your class will be using the lab/server.  Student accounts are based on the list of students enrolled in your class and on the wait list for your class.  If you have any extension students or other students who are not listed for the class, you will need to specifically request accounts for them.
  • TA accounts.  Instructors or TAs must request accounts for the TAs.

Class rosters

The roster of students for your class can be obtained on Blink.  Only regular UCSD students are listed on the roster (i.e. concurrent enrollment students/extension students are not listed).  The class roster allows you to see the students enrolled in your class and the students on the wait list.  You may view the list of students, download the list of students, view photographs of the students and send E-mail to the students.  Follow these steps to access your class roster:

  • Go to http://blink.ucsd.edu in a web browser
  • In the Toolbox box, open up the Instruction tools section
  • Select Class Lists
  • Log on with your business systems credentials (Click New user? if you do not have a business systems account)
  • Enter the section number of your course (or other search criteria) and start a search