How-to: Using the Canadian HSS Commons as a helpful tool and resource for educators

The Canadian HSS Commons is a digital space for Canadian HSS researchers, stakeholders, and educators to access, share, repost, and develop scholarly works and projects. Here are functions on the platform that educators may find helpful for their teaching: creating a group for their class to post course outlines, syllabi, assignments, and materials supporting student learning; joining existing groups to exchange information with colleagues and other members; and using the repository as a learning source.

  • Create a group: As a teacher, you can create a group for your class by logging into your account. It then takes you to your “Dashboard." Click on “Groups” in your “Dashboard” and choose “Group ID” and a title for your new group. Groups provide members with digital spaces to store information and collaborate with other group members. Using a group, you can post a copy of your syllabus, course outlines, materials, assignments, or tutorials for your students. When students are members of a group, they can: (1) access the profile of and message each member; (2) receive the group’s announcements; (3) access its blog, forum, collections, or other pages; and (4) access courses offered within the group (if applicable). Depending on the group’s membership and permission settings, students can also access any projects owned by this group. Students can create a group for themselves if they have an account.
  • Join a group: You can join existing groups, too. These groups serve as an academic community in which you can discuss issues and learn from others. Once you are in a group, you can upload your documents and write blog posts, or share your opinions. Students can also join an existing group that matches their interests. Here are suggestions for joining a group:
    • First, you must sign up for an HSS Commons account. Then use the “Search” bar in the top-right corner to find a group you wish to join, or click on the “Group page under the “Community” item in the main menu and click “Browse available groups” to find a specific group. Click on the green “Join Group” button. This will send a member request to the manager of the group. If the manager approves your request, you will be able to access the group. For more information about creating a group, please visit Knowledge Base/Creating a group and Group guidelines and tips.
  • Use the repository as a learning source for students and colleagues: The repository is a great space for teachers and students to access and share publications and other resources. You will find a variety of useful materials and items that you can bring into your class. For more information, please visit ‘Course material and learning’.

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