The upgrade of My Dundee has been changed to 20th December 2018 – 7th January 2019
This is a change from the previously communicated 14th to 21st December. During this period staff and students will continue to have access to their modules on My Dundee, though there will be significant restrictions on the services and functionality available. We have made this decision to minimise the impact on learning and teaching activities taking into consideration the feedback received from the community and technical challenges uncovered during our preparations.
This post was originally send to all staff on behalf of Professor Karl Leydecker, Vice-Principal Learning and Teaching.
What is happening?
Previously scheduled for the week after Semester 1 ends (15 – 21 December), the migration will now proceed according to the following timetable:
|5pm, Thursday, 20/12/2018||
My Dundee Taken Offline
The service will be taken offline at the end of the day on the Thursday. There will be no access to My Dundee until the interim provision is brought online by 5pm the next day (Friday).
|5pm, Friday 21/12/2018||
Interim Access Switched On
to a restricted version of My Dundee is brought online to cover the full migration period:• Reference-only access to module content (changes will not be transferred to the new system)• No access to connected services e.g. Turnitin(see below for more detail on this interim provision)
|26/12/2018 to 05/01/2019||Blackboard performs conversion and migration of our data to new SaaS provision. Interim provision remains in place.|
Config and Testing
UoD IT & CTIL will configure and test new service
Go-Live Day, Interim Access Ends
When ready, the interim provision will be removed, and the new service will be brought online a short time later.
|08/01/2019 to 11/01/2019||
Although the deadline for bringing the service online is the 7th and we will have rehearsed and tested every step of the way, users should be aware that there is a higher risk of service disruption following a major upgrade like this.
Why has this decision been made?
Four key factors led to this decision:
|1.||With previous periods of downtime, we have been able to provide alternative access to the Turnitin service. However, we have been informed by the vendor that this option is no longer supported. This unanticipated issue precludes the use of Turnitin for any purpose during any migration period, meaning no marking or submission of assignments through My Dundee during the migration.|
|2.||The dominant message received through the impact forms was that Schools need significant access to Turnitin for marking and for outstanding submissions during the week 15 th to 21st of December. It has been decided that the impact of removing this functionality would cause unacceptable disruption to Schools.|
|3.||Another requirement that has come from our initial rehearsal of the migration is that some significant work needs to be performed on the live system between now and the live migration. This work would require about a week of significant service degradation and possible disruption between now and the live migration. This work will be avoided with this change of schedule resulting in no service disruption for the rest of this semester.|
|4.||We have considered moving the migration to next summer however, to meet the University’s Cyber Essentials accreditation we must ensure our IT systems are kept up to date with security patches. As a result, if we were to move the migration to next summer, we would be forced to perform at least one upgrade in January and possibly further system patching over Sem 2, potentially resulting in unscheduled disruption and downtime.|
Put simply, the impact of removing access to Turnitin for marking and submission during the last week of the university opening would be too great and delaying the migration until the summer would result in forced downtime during semester 2.
While we understand that this new schedule will still incur some measure of disruption to learning and teaching activities, the Project Board judge
that this is the best possible solution to minimise that impact. We are also mindful that this upgrade will lead to a long-term programme of improvements for My Dundee including the removal of the need to schedule disruptive periods of downtime.
Interim provision over the migration period
During the migration there will be access to an interim provision of My Dundee. This provision will have the following restrictions and we ask
users to read these carefully.
Following the schedule summarised above, there will be a period of complete downtime from 5pm on the 20th December lasting until the interim provision is switched on by 5pm, 21st December. This interim provision will remain in place until the new system is ready to be brought online on the 7th January 2019, with a small period of downtime required to switch between the systems:
- Access to My Dundee and basic module content will continue. However, the system must be viewed as for review purposes only. Any changes made to modules during the interim period will not be transferred to the new system and will effectively be lost on the 7th January 2018. The interim provision should be used for reference only. For example:
- Students will be able to access content, information, links, historical activities etc. to support coursework and ongoing assignments.
- Staff will be able to access the same as students and access historical grades for work completed before interim provisions began.
- Access to connected services will be removed including, but not limited to:
- For marking, including via Turnitin’s website or on an iPad
- For submission
- Access to feedback
- Blackboard Assignments (Safe Assign)
- Collaborate (can still be accessed indirectly – contact CTIL for details)
- Questionmark OnDemand (Authoring will still be possible)
- Maple TA
Any activities requiring access to unavailable services will need to be rescheduled or an alternative provision put in place e.g. submission by email.
- The address of My Dundee will remain the same throughout the process.
- Extensive notices and comms will be posted to ensure that users stay fully informed throughout the migration.
- CTIL will be running drop-in sessions the week before the migration and the week after to support staff preparing for both the migration and for semester 2 (more details to follow).
New impact forms
Given the change of schedule we are re-issuing a Migration Impact Form. This form is for module leaders to report planned activities that:
- Cannot be rescheduled.
- Cannot be supported through an alternative method.
- Cannot be supported by the interim provision detailed above.
These impact forms are intended to identify exceptional cases – the schedule and interim provision are now set as detailed above.
CTIL will contact respondents directly.
What happens next?
Between now and the upgrade, CTIL and UoD IT will continue to test and rehearse the process to ensure things run smoothly. Further communication will be published through the staff/student newsletters, the My Dundee Blog and posted on the front page on My Dundee including the following:
- Details of support available for the full course of the migration.
- Specific guidance for staff.
- Specific guidance for students.
- Fortnightly project updates.
Please note that a reduced version of this message has been distributed to students.
Any questions about the revised schedule should be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.