Tech Tip of the Week: iSchool Syllabus Project

Class registration is quickly approaching! Are you still deciding what iSchool classes to take next semester? It can be difficult to choose, especially when there are so many classes that sound interesting. To aid in your registration decision-making, the iSchool has compiled a Box folder of syllabi from previous semesters which can be accessed by all iSchool students.

Tech Tip of the Week: iSchool Student Tools on Wiki

Students of the iSchool are privy to lots of tools. So many tools in fact, that it can be difficult to remember what’s where and what it’s good for. If your bookmarks tab is full of iSchool pages, you might condense a few of them by saving the iSchool Student Tools page on the iSchool Wiki. The linked page takes you through a lot of the basics, like Canvas, Zoom, and 2FA, as well as a few useful links you may not have looked into before. This week, we encourage you to check out this repository of student-facing resources.

As always, if you have questions, the iSchool Help Desk can be contacted by phone at (217) 244-4903 or (800) 377-1892, via email at, or chat at Our contact info is also on course Canvas pages.

The iSchool Wiki banner.

Tech Tip of the Week: Canvas Mobile Apps

Whether you are an instructor or a student, there may be times that you need to check Canvas away from your computer. You could use a browser on your phone but you know that many functions are not mobile compatible and those that are can still be difficult to navigate. Fortunately, you can download the Canvas Student App or Canvas Teacher App instead. From participating in discussions to seeing or posting grades, the Canvas mobile apps allow users to access their courses easily while on the go.

Tech Tip of the Week: Installing Printers and Using Papercut

Have you ever needed to print something and not known where to do it? Never fear! The iSchool has some printers that you can use!

We recommend the use of public printers Optimus, located conveniently right next to the Help Desk on the second floor or Chip who resides next to room 12 on the first floor, both located in 501 E. Daniel St. In the new building, we recommend using Luna, located next to the Help Desk on the 4th floor. To learn more about the public printers and where they live, check out this Wiki page. We will do a second Tech Tip in the future regarding printers to use in the new building once everything is set up there!

Printing Cost and Quota:
iSchool Masters and CAS students have $21 a semester for printing costs. You must be currently enrolled in an iSchool course to use this budget. School Faculty, Staff, and PhD students are not charged for printing, although it is tracked. Both black and white and color printing costs $0.07/page. Color printing is available on Optimus, located on the 2nd floor near the Help Desk. Check your printing balance on the Illinois Papercut page.  Unused printing quotas do not carry over. Additional printing quota can be purchased on the IlliniCash website. 
Undergraduate iSchool students have access to printers across campus, including the ones in the iSchool. Undergraduate printing cost is $.10/page on monochrome printers and $.40/page on color printers. Color printers charge $.40/page even if monochrome documents are printed.

Printer Installation for your computer:
Though we do have self-service kiosks for both Chip and Optimus where you can log in and print from, there is also the option for you to download the printers on to your computer, so when you are in the building you will be able to print. Instructions for how to install the printers on Mac are here and PC here! Always feel free to drop by the Help Desk if you need assistance with installing printers or have any other questions!

Canvas Tech Tip of the Week: Adding a Profile Picture to Canvas

You may have noticed that your profile picture on Canvas is blank, or is the same image as your iCard photo. If you would like to change your Canvas profile photo, follow along this week’s Tech Tip below.

First, have a picture you’d like to use on the device you are using, or be ready to take a picture with a camera.

Log in to your Canvas account, either on a computer, or on a smart device via the Canvas App. Select the profile icon in the left hand bar of Canvas.

It should be at the top of the pillar of icons.

Screenshot with highlights on profile icon in Canvas.
Screenshot with highlight and arrow, directing users to the Profile icon.

Select “Profile” in the menu that appears.

Screenshot with highlight and arrow, directing users to “Profile” button

You should now see a page with your name, a place for your profile picture, and places for other personal information which you may manage separately. You can edit your profile picture by clicking on it. If you have not already placed an image there, Canvas will default to your iCard portrait photo, if you took one.

Screenshot with arrows and highlights on profile picture icon and “Edit Profile” button

Once you have clicked on the circle icon to edit it, you will have the option to “Upload a Picture” from your computers files, or “Take a Picture” using any attached web camera. Select “choose a picture” at the bottom.

Note: You may use any image file type, such as .png or .jpg, or even .gif animated images (although the animation will not carry through to your icon).

Screenshot of menu upon clicking profile picture circle

Upon choosing an image to use, you may then crop the picture using the circular overlay to focus on the picture as you please. Click and drag the cropping circle to focus your profile picture to your taste.

A square image fits the cropping window better.

Hit “Save” at the bottom and you’re good to go.

Note: Immediately after saving the new image as your profile pic, the icon in the profile settings page you’ve been working from may turn white. Try refreshing the page or clicking back to it, allowing the new image to load properly. You may want to double check your new profile picture before moving on, to ensure the cropping and resolution are to your taste.

Additional Resources: For more in-depth directions, see the official Instructure Guide for changing your profile picture on Canvas. The above link from the UIUC Systems Knowledge Base in turn links to the official Canvas Instructure Guide.

Tech Tip of the Week: Loanable Technology

Did you know that you can borrow equipment as well as books from the University Library? Both the Grainger IDEA Lab and the Media Commons have loanable technologies, including game consoles and virtual reality headsets. 
The iSchool Help Desk has some loanable technologies like Windows or Mac laptops, dongles, and more!
At the iSchool Help Desk, equipment may be borrowed by faculty, staff, and graduate students of the iSchool, whereas the University Library can lend to our undergraduate friends as well! The iSchool Help Desk has a first come first serve basis, so when we are running low on equipment, you can contact us ahead of coming to verify that the Help Desk has what you are looking for. 


Tech Tip of the Week: iSchool Wiki Zoom Resources

Welcome back, iSchoolers! Getting back into the swing of Zoom classes and meetings can be overwhelming, but the Help Desk has you covered with all the Zoom documentation you could need. The iSchool wiki has a dedicated page for Zoom resources and documentation, including tips on how to sign in to Zoom using SSO, navigating breakout rooms, and adding Zoom meetings to your Outlook calendar. Check out our Zoom documentation on the wiki here

And as always you can ask the Help Desk if you have any questions or concerns about Zoom! We are currently working in the iSchool building on the 2nd floor, and you can also reach us at 217-244-4903 or 800-377-1892,, and on our TechChat.

Tech Tip of the Week: Fall Technology Workshops

The iSchool Help Desk is planning to host several workshops throughout the semester to provide iSchool students with opportunities to build their tech skills. But before we schedule them, we would like to hear from you about what you would like to see! 

To access previous workshops hosted by the Help Desk, visit the iSchool Technology Training page on Canvas. You can watch recordings and review course materials, as well as get ideas about what else you’d like to learn.

Tech Tip: Confirming a Submission in Canvas

Here are some notes taken directly from Instructure’s Canvas guides. The source is listed below if you would like to view the content directly and more in-depth.


Celebration Animation:
One of the easiest ways to tell if your submission has gone through properly, is to enable the Canvas celebration animation in your profile settings. You can find these settings by logging into Canvas, selecting your profile photo, then the settings item. Scrolling down on the subsequent settings page will reveal the “User settings” under the heading, “Feature Options.” Within the “User settings” there is the option to enable and disable celebration animation. Enabling the celebration animation will allow a burst of digital confetti to display upon submission of an assignment.

The Profile Settings page of Canvas in which you can enable and disable the Celebration Animation in addition to other User Features.
Hovering the cursor over the “State” icon will allow you to select either “enable” or “disable”
There will also be a record of your submission, which should appear in the upper right corner upon submission or refresh.

View Submission:
After you have submitted your work, you will see information in the Sidebar about your submission. For file uploads, the sidebar provides a link to your submission to download if necessary. This should populate immediately, or upon refreshing the page and remain there indefinitely.

If you choose, you may resubmit another version of your assignment using the New Attempt button. You will only be able to view the details of your most recent submission in the Sidebar, but your instructor will be able to see all of your submissions.

*When you resubmit an assignment, you can only access and view your most recent submission. However, instructors can view all of your submissions.

Graded Submissions:
Once the instructor has graded your submission, the Grades link in Course Navigation displays a grading indicator.
You can also see details about your assignment and links to additional feedback in your Grades page.

Canvas Tech Tip: Account Notification Settings, Course Notification Settings

In Canvas, there are opportunities to customize features to your own taste. Today’s Tech Tip will focus on notifications in Canvas. There are two options; the first being your general account Canvas Settings which you can find beneath your profile photo, and the second being Course-specific Notification Settings which you can access on individual course pages.

In the general settings, as shown in the first two images, you can disable/enable notification timeouts, such that when notifications do appear in Canvas, they will remain until they are dismissed. Enabling Notification Timeouts will allow notifications to dismiss themselves a short moment.

Fig. 1 On the side of the Canvas Home Page, you can find your account settings beneath your profile photo
Fig. 2 The Profile Notification Setting, “Disable Alert Notification Timeouts”

In these next two images, on an individual course page, you can customize notifications frequency and device destination (phone, email, canvas homepage, etc.)

Fig. 3 Within this sample course, selecting the bell icon with “View Course Notifications” will allow you to select course-specific settings.
Fig. 4 Some of the Course Notifications Settings. There are more to explore on the Course Notification Settings page. Note the options available for email.

And that’s all for Canvas notification Settings. There are of course other Canvas settings which we hope to explore further in future Tech Tips.

As always, if you have technical questions about Canvas, contact us at the Help Desk at (217) 244-4903 or (800) 377-1892,, or via chat at You can also find us on the 4th Floor of 614 E Daniel just to your left as you exit the elevators. Our desk hours are typically 9-5 on Weekdays.