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Sample Semester Start Email to Students


Below is an example of what you can send your students to help them get started in Desire2Learn. The instructor isn’t responsible for training students on how to use Desire2Learn: all you need to do is point them to the help videos.

You must always assume that someone in your course might be new to Ursuline or new to Desire2Learn. Because of this, it is important that you direct them to the resources available.

The email below is a sample email you can use as a model. Feel free to use the language provided or to adapt it for your own course. Note that the paragraph in italics is the paragraph about accessing the D2L training resources for students. Pick and choose the sections of the model email that apply to your course so you can help students hit the ground running for the new semester.

Also, the message suggests you email your students the syllabus and ask them to read it before the first day. While not all students might follow these instructions, many will, and this can save you time on the first day of class. Also, you could consider creating a syllabus quiz to test their reading.

This email has been updated for Spring 2015.


Dear Students,

Welcome to Instructional Technology. My name is Ms. Teresa Potter and I will be your instructor. I am still working on solidifying course website, so the course isn’t open in Desire2Learn yet. It will be available by Monday morning at 8 am.

We will be using Desire2Learn to facilitate our course. In addition to our face-to-face meetings, this online home will allow me to connect you with resources about our content, to facilitate interaction and communication between class meetings, and to help support the assessment in this course.

To access Desire2Learn go to Log in using the same username and password you use for your Ursuline email and for MyUrsuline.

Once you have logged in to Desire2Learn you will see a box on the homepage that says Getting Started with Desire2Learn Resources for Students. In this box there is a link to the Student Desire2Learn Resource Portal. Please visit this portal and follow the instructions to find the training videos. Please watch the videos on Desire2Learn navigation, accessing course content, participating in discussions, and submitting to dropboxes. There are also practice activities you can try if you would like. This way you can try the tools before you need to complete them for a grade. 

Since the D2L classroom isn’t ready yet I have attached our syllabus. Please familiarize yourself with the course description, required resources, the calendar, and our course policies.

Next Monday, January 12th, we will meet from 11:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. in Mullen 140.

Please also make sure you have your book for the first class.

See you next Monday.

Ms. Potter

Students: How to connect your Ursuline Email to download Office for free

The following process will allow Ursuline students to download the latest version of Microsoft Office for free as well as access other features. Faculty and staff, you do not need to complete this process. This is a new feature that was recently added for students that came with the original Faculty/Staff accounts.

  1. Visit the Office 365 Pro sign up page to get started.
  2. Enter your full Ursuline email address, including the
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  3. You will see a message that says You already have an account. This is because you do have an Office 365 account, but isn’t connected to Office 365 Pro yet. Click Continue to start this connection.
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  4. You will be brought to the Office 365 login screen. Log in using your Ursuline email address (including the and your password. Click Sign In.
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  5. You will now see a message that says No need to sign up. Again, this is because you are already signed up. Click Ok, got it to continue.
    office 365 5It might also say Almost There and then ask you to click start. For either of these two messages, click OK, got it or choose Start.
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  6. Your account is now connected. You can either download Office now by clicking Install Now, or you can come back at a later time and download Office.
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