For Staff

Introduction to Trunk

  • Trunk is a new online environment designed to facilitate teaching, learning, and assessment at Tufts. Trunk enables the sharing of knowledge and new models of collaboration within and across disciplines, at Tufts and beyond. Trunk is powered by Sakai, an open source collaboration and learning environment that has been developed by the educational community. Sakai is used at over 350 schools around the world to support teaching, learning and scholarly activity both inside and outside the classroom. Trunk is the version of Sakai that has been configured and customized to meet Tufts University’s diverse needs.

    Screen shot of Trunk home page.

    Fig 1. Screen shot of Trunk home page (click to enlarge).

  • The video below gives a good introduction to the capabilities of the Trunk system:

    View larger version of the video.

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  • Trunk works on both Windows and Macintosh operating systems and runs reliably on most modern browsers. Issues have been reported with Safari and Chrome particularly using the rich content (wysiwig) editor.

    Trunk is best viewed in the following browsers:

    Windows:
    Firefox 2.0 and newer
    Internet Explorer 6 and newer
    Netscape 8.0 and newer

    Macintosh:
    Firefox 2.0 and newer
    Netscape 8.0 and newer

    Other:
    Firefox 2.0 and newer
    Netscape 8.0 and newer

    Other browsers may not be fully supported. Some functions in Trunk will not work well or will not work at all if you are using:

    • Safari – older verions
    • Macintosh Internet Explorer 5x
    • Camino 0.7 and newer
    • Netscape 7.0 or older
    • Opera
  • Getting Started

  • 1. Go to http://trunk.tufts.edu

    2. In the login box of the top right hand corner of the Trunk home page enter your Tufts Username and Password and then click the “Go” button.

    Screen shot of Trunk login screen.

    Fig 1. Screen shot of where to login on the Trunk home page (click to enlarge).

  • The Profile2 tool, located in My Workspace site, allows you to display information about yourself in Trunk, and  provides basic social networking capability. Information posted in your profile appears in the Trunk Roster tool. In Profile2, You can add a photo, search for users with common interests, post tweets to your Twitter account and even create status updates. Uploading a picture to your profile (that will appear in your course rosters as a result) is a helpful way for instructors to identify you.

    The Privacy settings in Profile2 allow you to decide who you share information with. Privacy options include, everyone, only my connections or only me.

    Fig. 1 – Screen shot showing what a profile looks like (click to enlarge image)

  • Navigating Inside Trunk

  • 1) Navigating to a Site
    When you first log into Trunk you will be in a site known as My Workspace.
    To navigate to a course or project site, select the link to the site from your Quicklinks or from the lists contained under the My Sites tab.

    Screen shot showing location of site navigation.

    Fig 1. Screen shot showing location of site navigation links (click to enlarge).

    2) Site Home page and tool home pages
    When you login to Trunk or click the link to go to a site, you will always arrive on the Home page of that site. You can tell you’re on the home page because the tool will be orange. To move to another tool, simply select it from the tools menu. Your screen will refresh and you will be on the home page of that tool. (eg Resources home, assignments home, calendar home).

    Screen shot showing location of "home" link.

    Fig 2. Screen shot showing location of site Home link. Click to enlarge

    3) Returning to a tool home page
    If you are working in a tool and wish to return to the home or top level page of that tool, you have two options. You may click the Reset button to the left of the tool title, which looks like two arrows going around in a circle. Alternatively, you can scroll to the bottom of the page and select the button labeled either Cancel of Back.

    Screen shot showing location of the tool reset button.

    Fig 3. Screen shot showing location of the tool reset button (click to enlarge).

    4) Avoid the Back Button
    Trunk does not work well with the back button of your browser. We recommend using the guidelines above for moving around in the Trunk interface.

  • The back button is unpredictable and may take you out of your current tool or site. Instead of using the back button, use the internal navigation features of Trunk. Most screens have a “Cancel,” “Clear,” or “Back” button at the bottom of the page, which should allow you to navigate back one page.

    Fig 1 – Screen shot showing the location of the Cancel button (click to enlarge image)

    You can also use the Reset and Home buttons. The Reset button will take you to the homepage of the tool you are using and the Home button will take you to the homepage of the site.

    Fig 2 – Screen shot showing the location of the reset button (click to enlarge image)

    Fig 3 – Screen shot showing the location of the "Home" button (click to enlarge image)

  • Using Project Sites for Collaboration

  • Project sites are designed to facilitate online collaboration. They are similar to organizational sites in Blackboard and can be used to support a wide variety of activities, from students working on class projects or clubs to scientists collaborating on grant proposals, faculty participating in a search or tenure committees, or administrators revising the undergraduate curriculum.

    Anyone at Tufts, faculty, students or staff may create project sites for their work. Project sites look almost identical to course sites in Trunk, but they differ in several important ways.

    • Project sites are not set-up automatically; they must be manually created.
    • Users must be manually added to project sites.
    • Project sites have a slightly different set of tools than course sites; they do not include Assignments, Tests & Quizzes and Gradebook2.
    • Project sites have a different set of roles; rather than instructors and students, project sites have organizers and participants.
  • Project sites can be created by anyone at Tufts. To create a project site, go the Site Setup tool in your My Workspace site, select New from the Tool bar, choose project site and follow the site setup wizard to create your site immediately.

  • The same set of tools that is available for course sites is available for project sites, except project sites cannot include the Assignments, Tests & Quizzes and Gradebook2 tools.

  • Once you’ve created your site, go to the Site Editor tool and select the Manage Access option. Check the box labeled: Can be joined by anyone with authorization to login. Select the role for people who join (recommended roles are guest or participant) and click Update to save your selections. This will allow your site to appear in a list of Joinable Sites found in the Membership tool of all users’ My Workspaces. You may reverse this process to remove your site from the list of joinable sites and manage your site membership manually.

    TA’s, guests, and auditors must be added to a course site manually. To add someone to your site, go to the Site Editor, click Add participants. Type in the person’s email address. If they have a Tufts email, use the top box. If they do not, use the bottom box and make sure to send the notification so that they can access Trunk.

    Screen shot showing step 1 and 2 of adding participants to your site.

    Fig 1. Screen shot showing step 1 and 2 of adding participants to your site (click to enlarge).

    Screen shot showing steps 3-6 of adding participants.

    Fig 2. Screen shot showing steps 3-6 of adding participants (click to enlarge).

    Screen shot showing steps 7-8 of adding participants.

    Fig 3 – Screen shot showing steps 7-8 of adding participants (click to enlarge).

    Screen shot showing steps 9-10 of adding participants.

    Fig 4. Screen shot showing steps 9-10 of adding participants (click to enlarge).

    Screen shot showing step 11 (and final step) of adding participants.

    Fig 5. Screen shot showing step 11 (and final step) of adding participants.

  • To join a public project site, first go to My Workspace and access the Membership tool in the MY SETTINGS box.  If you do not see the Membership menu bar, click the My Current Sites button in the menu bar near the top of the screen.  Once you have clicked Membership, click on the “Joinable Sites” tab and click “Join” below the sites you would like to join.

    Fig. 1 – Screen shot showing the location of the My Workspace tab (click to enlarge)

    Fig. 2 – Screen shot showing the location of the Membership tool (click to enlarge)

    Fig. 3 – Screen shot of the location of the Joinable Sites option (click to enlarge)

    Fig. 4 – Screen shot showing the location of the Join option (click to enlarge)

  • Yes! Trunk allows for students and teachers to create project sites. This will allow you to customize your own site to enable communication between fellow peers. Students are allowed to post, chat, upload documents, make comments, as well as message freely between project site users. Project sites can be made public or private and work in a very similar fashion to Google Docs.

  • Communication Tools

  • The Sign-up tool allows users to create and sign-up for office hours, meetings, review sessions and other events.   It can be used in both course and project sites.  All events/meetings can be set up as recurring events which creates several different meetings under the same title according to a given schedule.  There are three types of events/meetings within the Sign-up tool:

    Open meetings: a single time slot for an event or meeting, serving as an announcement.  No attendance list is kept, so participants who plan to attend are not required to sign up.

    Singe slot:  a single time slot is created, an attendance list is maintained, and the number of participants can be limited or unlimited.  Participants are required to sign up in order to appear on the attendance list.

    Multiple slots:  a single time slot can be divided into any number of time slots of equal length, under a single meeting name.  For example, a two hour meeting could have four half-hour time slots, three 40-minute slots, or eight 15-minute slots.  The time slots can also be defined at irregular times over different days.  For each slot a maximum number of participants is specified.  Participants are required to sign-up in order to appear on the attendance list.

  • To add an event or meeting to your course or project site:

    1. Navigate to the course or project site
    2. From the tools menu, click Sign-upTrunk displays the homepage for the Sign-up tool.
    3. In the Sign-up menu bar, click Add.
    4. In the Title field, name your event/meeting.
    5. In the Location field, enter the location for your event/meeting.
    6. In the Description field, you can enter any details you wish to share about your event/meeting.
    7. In the Start Time and End Time fields, enter the time of your event/meeting. 
    8. Use the drop down menu to select the Meeting Frequency if you wish to have a recurring meeting.  Selection of a meeting frequency other than “Once Only” will create a series of entries in the meetings table with the same name but different details, where any of the individual entries can be modified as necessary.
    9. In the Sign-up begins and Sign-up ends fields, enter the point at which the event/meeting will be opened for sign-up and the point at which sign-up for the event/meeting will no longer be available.
    10. Use the Available to field to determine who can sign-up for the event/meeting.  You can limit sign-up to members of a group, site or extend the sign-up offer to the membership of your other course or project sites.  If you choose to extend the sign-up offer to multiple sites, each site must also have the Sign-up tool turned on in order for its members to participate.
    11. When you select the Meeting Type relevant options will be displayed.
    12. Click Next to view a summary of your event/meeting, verify details, and complete the meeting settings.
    13. Check the appropriate boxes to manage the display of participant names, email notifications and announcing availability.
    14. Click Show other default settings to manage advanced settings regarding the wait list, participant comments and auto reminders.
    15. Click Publish to publish the event/meeting allowing participants to select their own time slot, or Click Assign Participants & Publish to assign participants to specific time slots.

     

     

     

  • Tool Overview

    The announcement tool provides an excellent method for posting important notices. The content of these announcements can be as varied as the instructor desires since the tool has the ability to integrate with many other tools within the Trunk environment. For example, an instructor may use the announcements tool to post a reminder for important deadlines or for impromptu changes like a cancellation of class due to snow. Some other tools have options which allow them to post announcements within a course as well.

    By default, Trunk will display course announcements on the course homepage. To display a list of announcements for all of your Trunk sites, you must first click on the My Workspace tab and then access the announcement tool in the Tools Menu on the left side of the page.

    In addition to plain text, the announcements tool is robust enough to allow instructors to post using a rich text editor, to insert photos within the body of a message, or to add files as an attachment.

    Posting an Announcement

    View Video | Download full PDF on Announcements tool

    1. Navigate to the course site.
    2. Tip: You can find a list of your course sites in the Quicklinks toolbar within Trunk

    3. From the Tools Menu on the left side of the page, locate the Announcements tool in the Communications group.
    4. The Announcements tool menu bar will display towards the top of the page. Click Add.
    5. A new window appears displaying the Add Announcement form. The items marked with a red asterisks are required.
    6. Type a name for the Announcement in the box labeled Announcement title.
    7. In the large box labeled Body, enter the text for the Announcement. Trunk provides a comprehensive list of tools in its Rich Text Editor that enable an announcement to be further formatted according to an instructor’s taste. If an announcement has been preformatted using Microsoft Word, the editor has a useful Paste from Word tool which can be utilized to preserve the format.
    8. Determine the Access level.
    9. The default setting Only members of this site can see this announcement limits the viewing of the announcement to only those Trunk community members who explicitly have access to the course.
    10. The publicly viewable setting grants access to all members of the Trunk community regardless if they can access the course.
    11. The Availability option is an important setting for determining the duration of the announcement.
      • The default setting, Show, displays the announcement immediately and permanently.
      • The Hide setting can be used to save the announcement as a draft for a later posting or to archive the announcement if it contains text that can be reused.
      • Specify Dates is a setting which can be used when the announcement has a known duration. Selecting this setting opens up hidden checkboxes which can be used to set a beginning and ending time for the announcement.
    12. The Attachments option can be used to attach a file to the announcement. The file can come from your desktop, a hosted website, or from the course’s Resources tool. The maximum size of the attachment is limited to 20 MB.
    13. The final option is to set an Email Notification for the Announcement. The default setting is None – No Notification. Use the drop down list to choose a different setting.
      • High – All participants: An email will be sent to each course member when the announcement is created.
      • Low – Only participants who have opted in: An email will be sent only to those course members whose preferences are set to receive low-priority announcements.
    14. To preview the announcement before publishing, click Preview. The Announcement Preview window is displayed summarizing the settings and the message of the posting. If changes need to be made, click Edit and update the announcement accordingly.
    15. Click Add Announcement when the announcement is ready to be published based on the chosen settings.
  • Tool Overview

    The Messages tool in Trunk is a simple way of communicating with students or other members of your site.The Messages tool enables you to:

    • Send messages inside Trunk to individual site members or groups of site members.
    • Receive messages from your site members.
    • Send a copy of a message to a recipient’s email address outside Trunk.
    • Store, organize and manage communications you’ve sent and received.

    Compose a Message

    View Video | Download full PDF on Trunk Messages tool

    To compose a message using the Messages tool:

    1. Navigate to the course site. The course tools display in the left Course Tools menu area.
    2. From the Course Tools menu, click Messages. The CLE displays the home page for the Messages tool. If you do not see the Messages menu bar, click the Reset button.
    3. Click Compose Message. The Compose a Message screen opens.
    4. Using your cursor, select message recipients by clicking on their role or name from the To menu. To select multiple recipients, hold down the shift key and click additional recipients.
    5. By default, messages are sent and received inside Trunk, and users view and manage these messages from the Messages tool. However, when you compose a message, you may choose to send a copy of that message to a student’s email address as well. To send a copy of your message to a student’s email account, check the box next to the:
      • Send a copy of this message to recipients’ email address(es) option.
      • The email address used will be the email on file with the university unless the user is not registered at Tufts.
    6. You may then select a priority level for your message by using the pull down menu. The options are Normal, Low and High. (what do these look like?)
    7. In the subject field, type a subject for your message.
    8. In the content field (rich text editor) compose your message. You may use the various content editing options to enhance the appearance of your message.
    9. Optional: Attachments. To add attachments, click Add Attachment and follow the instructions.
      • Your options here include browsing to locate a document on your computer, typing in a url for a website, or selecting a file stored in the Resources tool of your site.
    10. When you are satisfied with your message details, click Send.
  • Trunk EMail Archive Tool (PDF)
  • Creating and Managing Content

  • Download a PDF version of “Creating and Managing Content”
  • By default, any content you add to your My Workspace site is private. Should you wish to share content from your My Workspace site with someone on another site, you can. To do this, we suggest that you create a new folder titled public, click Edit Details for the folder and set the access options to publicly viewable. For content that’s previously been added, click Edit details next to the file. At the bottom of the Edit Details screen you should see a field titled Web Address (url) listed. This is the public url for the document. To share it with others outside My Workspace, simply cut and paste this url into another site, or send it to someone via email and they should be able to access the document. Note, you can also copy content over from your My Workspace to any of your course or project sites. Keep in mind that no one else will be able to directly access materials on your My Workspace unless you share it using one of these methods.

    Screen shot showing step 1 of making My Workspace files public.

    Fig 1. Screen shot showing step 1 of making My Workspace files public.

    Screen shot of steps 2-4 for making My Workspace files public.

    Fig. 2 Screen shot of steps 2-4 for making My Workspace files public (click to enlarge).

  • To hide documents or other resources, click “Edit Details” under the Actions menu of the resource. Scroll down to Availability and Access options. Select the radio button that reads Hide this item. Scroll to the bottom of your screen and click Update. Hidden items appear gray out to faculty and cannot be seen by users in the student role on course sites or participant role on project sites.

  • The Resources tool in Sakai creates a web-based file system for your course site. You can upload and download files of almost any type and organize them into folders. You can also move or copy them easily from folder to folder, and from one of your sites to any of the others. The full documentation of all of the features of the Resources tool is lengthy, but well worth reading. Here are summaries of the most basic features.

    Working With Lists and Folders

    In the Resources tool, all of the resources for the current site are stored in the root folder for the site. This folder carries the name of your site. For example, if your site is Psych 101 A, its resources are stored in a folder called Psych 101 A Resources.

    You may store several types of resources here: folders (stored as subfolders in the root folder), files, citation lists, URLs to web pages, HTML pages, simple text documents (that is, documents that contain unformatted text), and form items (that is, instances of forms used in ePortfolios). On the Resources home page, a specific symbol identifies each type of resource, and a copyright symbol © marks all copyrighted resources.

    You have several options for accessing the contents of folders and changing the display of items in the list:

    • To open an individual folder, click the small folder icon with a plus sign) next to the title ().
    • To collapse an individual folder, click the small folder icon with a minus sign next to the title ().
    • To expand all folders, click the “expand all” icon () at the top of the list.
    • To collapse all folders, click the “collapse all” icon ().
    • To sort the items by any column header, click the header you want to sort on. For basic information on sorting, see Working with Lists.

    I. Upload a File to Resources

    To add one or more resources, access the Resources tool and follow these steps:

    1. If the Resources home page is not displayed, click the Reset button.
    2. Click the Add button for the folder in which you want to store the resource.
    3. When the CLE displays the Add pulldown list, click to select the type of resource you want to add.
    4. Based on your selection, the steps to add a resource item vary. For instructions for adding each type of item, see the appropriate subsection.

    View Video | Download PDF

    II. Deleting a Resource

    Tip: This material explains how to use check boxes and the Remove link to delete resources. You may also perform this operation for a single resource by accessing the Actions pulldown list for the resource and choosing Remove.

    Note: You cannot delete a folder that contains files. You must delete the files first.

    You may delete resources from the Resources home page. To do so, access the Resources tool and follow these steps:

    1. If the Resources home page is not displayed, click the Reset button.
    2. Find the name of the resource you want to delete and check the box to the left of this name. Or to delete all resources, check the box to the left of the Title header.
      • Notice that the Copy, Remove, and Move options have become active above the header for the list of resources.
    3. Click Remove. The Resource tool displays a confirmation window.
    4. To remove this resource, click Remove. The CLE deletes it and redisplays the Resources home page. Or, to return to the Resources home page without deleting the resource, click Cancel.

    View Video | Download PDF

    III. Moving a Resource

    Tip: This material explains how to use check boxes and the Move link to move resources from one folder to another. You may also perform this operation for a single resource by accessing the Actions pulldown list for the resource and choosing Move.

    You may move one or more resources from one folder to another. To do so, access the Resources tool and follow these steps:

    1. If the Resources home page is not displayed, click the Reset button.
    2. Find the name of each resource you want to move to the same place and check the box to the left of each name. Or, to move all resources, check the box to the left of the Title header.
      • Notice that the Remove, Move, and Copy options have become active above the Title header.
    3. Click Move. The entire row for the selected file(s) is now highlighted, and a Paste icon () is displayed to the right of each folder and subfolder name.
    4. Click the Paste icon () by the name of the folder to which you want to move the item(s).

    The CLE moves the item(s) and redisplays the Resources home page.

    View Video | Download PDF

    IV. Copying a Resource

    Tip: This material explains how to use check boxes and the Copy link to move resources. You may also perform this operation for a single resource by accessing the Actions pulldown list for the resource and choosing Copy.

    Using the Resources tool, you may make a copy of any resource and paste it into a different folder. Copying a resource creates an identical item with the same title.

    To copy one or more resource, access the Resources tool and follow these steps:

    1. If the Resources home page is not displayed, click the Reset button.
    2. Find the name of the resource(s) you want to copy and check the box to the left of each name. Or, to copy all resources, check the box to the left of the Title header. Notice that the Remove, Move, and Copy options have become active above the Title header.
    3. Click the Copy link. The selected file is now highlighted and a Paste icon () is displayed to the right of each folder and subfolder name.
    4. Click the Paste icon () by the name of the folder to which you want to copy the item(s). The CLE copies the resource to that folder and redisplays the Resources home page.

    Note: If you paste the resource into the folder it was copied from, the CLE gives it the same name as the original folder followed by a number in parentheses, as in the file name Boer Wars (1).

    View Video | Download PDF

    V. Reordering Resources

    You may change the order of resources in any folder that contains more than one resource. To do so, access the Resources tool and follow these steps:

    1. If the Resources home page is not displayed, click the Reset button.
    2. Find the name of the folder whose contents you want to reorder.
    3. Click the Actions button for this folder and select Reorder from the pulldown list that is displayed. The CLE displays the Reordering screen.
    4. To change the order of the resources listed on the screen, choose either of these options:
      • Click the up and down arrow icons ( and ) to the left of the titles to move the items in either direction.
      • Select the number indicating the preferred position from the dropdown lists in the Position column.
      • The CLE reorders the list as you specify each change.
    5. To save the new order, click Save. Or to exit without saving the changes, click Cancel. In either case, the CLE displays the Resources home page.

    View Video | Download PDF

  • Additional Documentation

  • Sakai CLE User Guide (pdf)