Education Program technical update, April 2014
Since the last update, development of the editor campaigns project has been continuing, and it's almost at the point that it will be useful to users running edit-a-thons and other non-course outreach events. (If you are planning such an event soon and would like to beta test it for tracking the contributions of newcomers, get it touch.) In the meantime, we've made a few small improvements and bug fixes to the Education Program extension:
- Default course end date
The default end date for courses is now approximately six months in the future, instead of immediately. This will prevent the common problem where a user creates a new course page but does change the default dates, resulting in a course that is immediately considered "ended" and thus cannot be enrolled in.
- Notifications when you get added to a course
Whenever a user gets added to a course by someone else, they will now receive a Notification.
- Disabling individual student profiles
The student profile special page (Special:Student/Username, not to be confused with Special:Students) is a page that lists the courses a student editor is enrolled in, and is also supposed to list the articles that user is working on. However, the list of articles can include incorrect data in cases where an instructor or volunteer assigned the articles to the student editor. These profiles are being removed from the extension altogether. This change should go into effect Thursday, May 1. (Logs are still available to find out which courses a user is enrolled in.)
- Article edit notifications for students coming soon
A nearly complete patch from Facebook Open Academy student Jeff Lloyd will add a new type of Notification: students will be alerted to edits made by others to the article(s) they are assigned (as well as the corresponding talk pages). Expect to see this feature within the next several weeks.
- Duplicate courses and API deletion
Bugs in the course page creation process (now fixed) led in some cases to duplicate listings for the same course at Special:Courses. This happens when the same course page had two (or more) different course ID numbers. It is possible to clean up such duplicate entries using by making calls to the API. I've documented this process and written a Python script for it.