Information for community administrators and project supervisors

This page includes information needed by community administrators and project supervisors. Another help page presents general information on Communities and Projects.

Managing communities

Communities group projects based on various criteria. Most CommonSpaces communities refer to existing real-world communities, such as the students and the teachers of a university or the members of a professional association.

Besides aggregating projects, a community can have members of its own. In certain cases the Administrator of the community can add members to it choosing them from the set of the CommonSpaces registered users. In other cases it is the user that applies for membership.

In the case of a CommonSpaces community referring to an existing real-world community, when the Administrator adds a member or accepts the application of a user, s/he so certifies that the user is member of the associated real-world community; in general, it makes no sense for other people to apply if they do not belong to it.

The community administrator can coopt other administrators, by granting the Administrator role to other members of the community. The senior administrator (the one with most seniority in the role) can also revoke said role to others. Currently, the maximum number of administrators for a community is 3.

Managing projects

The project home

For the project members, the project home works as a dashboard, putting together controls (links and buttons) needed to collaborate and to communicate with other members.

The project dashboard of the supervisor includes additional controls to

  • edit and translate the project title and description
  • create sub-projects
  • upload a small image as the project logo and a bigger image as the project banner
  • accept applications for membership
  • appoint an additional supervisor
  • create the project forum
  • create the project chat room.

Project types

Main project types are:

  • LP creation projects; they are "regular" projects, allowing to create and edit Learning Paths (LPs), besides cataloguing Open Educational Resources (OERs)
  • Mentoring projects; they are described in the Help page on Mentoring
  • Support projects; they are reserved, almost private projects.

Also OER cataloguing projects exist; but they are now superseded by LP creation projects.

On support projects

Visibility and access

Support projects are reserved and half-private projects:

  • you can't find them using livesearch or the dedicated search form for projects
  • support projects are not listed under the name of the parent community (All communities menu)
  • most information concerning a support project is hidden to non-members.

However, all people can navigate to support projects in some way:

  • through a direct link from any document
  • clicking on a link in the catalog card of an OER that was catalogued inside the project
  • clicking on a link in the view page of a LP that was created inside the project.

Moreover, a member of a support project can access its home

  • from his/her user dashboard
  • clicking on a link in the home of its parent community - or its parent project in the case of a sub-project -, if the user is also a member of the latter.

A project member can classify an OER, create a LP and classify an external Repository.

A user that isn't member of a support project but is member of its parent community or project, can:

  • access a partial view of the support project using a link in the home of the parent community or project
  • apply for membership, but an informative message discourages from doing that without an express invitation to join the associated working group.

In any case, an authenticated user can apply for membership after accessing the project's home through a direct link.

Adding a project member or a project supervisor

The supervisor of un-published project (daft state) can contextually add member (after selecting a user) and grant him/her the supervisor role.

The supervisor of an open project (open state)

  • can add a member on his/her initiative
  • can grant the supervisor role to a member
  • the senior supervisor of a project can revoke the supervisor role of another member.

Managing chat rooms

September 2018 - This section, on chat rooms, is outdated. This functionality is now experimentally replaced by Knockplop meetings, hosted by the infrastructure of the Up2U project.

Project chat rooms are permanent chat room whose members are the project members. The room is hosted by an Openfire server that has been set up specifically for CommonSpaces.

Creating the chat room and keeping its settings in sync with the chat server

Each project can have its chat room, but the project Supervisors have control on its instantiation.

A project Supervisor has some simple action to perform in order to make the project chatroom available to the project members; if you are a project Supervisor, you can:

  • create the chat room, by clicking on the Chatroom-create button in the project page; you can have to wait some time before the action ends, since it involves a turnaround between the CommonS Platform and the chat server, Openfire; after the page refreshes, it will include a button Chatroom-add missing accounts
  • when you click on the add missing accounts button, a room member account will be created for each project member if not existing already; also in this case you could have to wait some time before the action ends.

NOTE - when new members join the project, they don't become immediately members of the chat room: the project Supervisor needs to issue again the add missing accounts command to allow new members to participate in the chat room.