Tools to Extend Nexus

Tags Nexus

Union College offers a wide variety of tools that you can use to extend Nexus' (the College's Learning Management System) functionality in order to enhance your course in the following areas:

If you are interested in any of these tools and would like to get started, book an appointment with a member of the Learning Design and Digital Innovation team or send an email to




Gradescope - grade assignments, quizzes and exams faster and more uniformly–give better feedback to students!

Grade more quickly and consistently

Use rubrics for point assignments and sets of standard responses to common errors

This tool can be used in conjunction with, or completely separate from, Nexus. Get started by watching this one hour training


Google Assignments - Create, analyze, and grade coursework

Quickly and securely create, analyze, and grade coursework using Google Docs through Nexus

Create and analyze assignments with individualized comment bank, rubrics, and originality reports


 Remark - Form scanner                                          

Scans and analyzes a variety of forms

Easy grading

Can be used for surveys as well as tests and quizzes

Panopto icon 

 Panopto - create interactive video quizzes and/or student video assignments                  

Instructors can create interactive video quizzes

Enable student video creation and submission through a Nexus course site (only the instructor can access the submitted videos).

Easy grading, as both interactive quizzes and video assignments integrate with Nexus gradebook

Polleverywhere icon 

Poll Everywhere - engage your students in class with live online polling, surveys, Q&As, quizzes, word clouds, and more.

Excellent formative assessment tool to help in class discussions and check where students are in their thinking in a low risk way.

Students can use their mobile devices or laptop computers to participate.

Instructors can get an account by contacting LDDIOnline support found here.

Audio + Digital Media Projects (tools for students)

Milanote icon


Milanote - notetaking, diagram, project plan, mindmapping, and more!

A digital environment to organize creative work

Milanote operates through “boards." Objects—text-notes, images, links with image previews, or file embeds—can easily be added anywhere on a virtual board. 

Contact to get your class set up with Milanote accounts for the term

Soundtrap icon


 Soundtrap - a cloud-based, audio-creating   platform

Empowers students and teachers to explore creative sound recording in all subjects

Create audio stories, musical compositions, and more 

Students can work collaboratively on a group project or individually.

Contact to get your class set up with Soundtrap accounts for the term

Image: Microsoft Sway logo 

 Sway -  Online presentations + content                           

Easily create beautiful, and engaging content displays

Intelligently formats content so the user can focus on creating the content, rather than organizing it

Consolidate research over time, especially when visuals are essential for learning

Easily aggregate a variety of media contents on the webpage

Contact to get your class set up with Sway accounts for the term

Image: Adobe Express logo Adobe Express - Create Infographics,  posters, short videos, +  web pages                         

Make thinking visible through social graphics, web stories, or animated videos from any browser on any device, including Chromebooks. Adobe Express was previously known as Adobe Spark.

The apps are also available on iOS and Android

Go HERE for information about logging into the Adobe Cloud services and getting the Express app.

Contact if you have questions or problems getting access.

Collaborative Annotation:


 Perusall - Document and assignment annotations                                                                                                                                               

Collaborative assignment and annotation tool

Allows students to engage with readings

Creates "confusion report" for instructor to highlight where students misunderstood, disagreed with each other about, or were most engaged with

Automatically grades annotations, making grading easy

Discussion and Blog tools:

Muse - Online publishing platform for blogs, websites

Easy to publish blogs

Make content public or private

Easy formatting


Kialo - Rational debate platform                                                                        

Helps keep arguments concise

Visual map of debate with size of arguments directly related to number of replies

Displays supporting and opposing points in a tree structure


Interactive Assignments:


 H5P - HTML5 Package                                                                                

Easy to create, share and reuse interactive content and applications online

Can create interactive videos, question sets, drag and drop questions, etc.

Learning Portfolio:

 Muse - Content creation and organization

Easy formatting

Easy publishing

Plagiarism Detection:


Checks all assignments for plagiarism from books and papers

Helps with grading


Google Assignments

Checks assignments for plagiarism through Google

Easy grading

Embedded Video:


 Panopto- Multimedia content management system

Can create and upload videos to My Folder library. Basic editing is available.

Can embed libraries or link videos in Nexus

Screencast or Lecture Capture:

Panopto icon 

 Panopto - Lecture capture, screen capture, flipped learning

Easily integrates with Nexus

Automatically uploaded with option to auto-publish

Easily record screen movements with audio, and/or record video with a webcam 


 Lightboard - Glass board to write on while recording

Helps emphasize points while recording

To use: contact User Servies staff via or this form.


Production Studio - Located in Schaffer Library, room 208

Can be used to record any type of lecture or lesson

Newly remodeled

To use: contact User Servies staff via or this form.


 Zoom - Web based video and screen share

Includes virtual dry erase board

Record lectures

Faculty  and stafff who want to keep Zoom cloud recordings longer than 120 days can set up the "Zoom to Ensemble workflow". When enabled, Zoom recordings will automatically get sent over to your Ensemble video library. Contact to have a member of the User Services team set this up for you.

Self-Directed Technology Tutorials:


 LinkedIn Learning - online library                                                                                          

Teaches latest software, creative, and business skills through video

Beginner to advanced courses

Can link to your LinkedIn account to provide automated content and course recommendations

Synchronous Remote Lecture, Meeting, or Office Hours:

Google Calendar icon

 Google Appointments - Calendar booking page for office hours, meetings, etc.

Create an appointment "booking page" that overlays with your personal Google Calendar for people to sign up to meet with you. 

For office hours, faculty can have one sign up link for they can paste within multiple Nexus course websites.

With the Zoom Google calendar Chrome extension, you can easily make these meetings virutal meetings!


 Zoom - Web based video and screen share

Can host online meetings, office hours, or project collaboration

All members of the Union College community are able to use and access this service

Faculty and stafff who need to keep Zoom cloud recordings longer than 120 days can set up the "Zoom to Panopto workflow". When enabled, Zoom recordings will automatically get sent over to your Panopto video library. Contact to have a member of the Client Services set this up for you.

Nexus Setup and Administration:


 Sharing Cart                                                                                                    

Nexus tool that helps copy course content

Can transfer activities between courses

Easy to use

Copies without user data



Nexus tool that displays topics in a grid format

Allows activities in tiles to be displayed as sub-tiles

User friendly



Nexus tool that allows users to easily track attendance

Allows teachers to take attendance during class

Allows students to view their own attendance record if the activity is not hidden


 General Nexus Support

ITS has in depth documentation and online support for getting started wiith Nexus, the College's Learning Management System (i.e., Moodle).

Thinking deeply about how to improve your teaching? Did you know The Our Shared Humanities initiative made it possible for the Schaffer Library to acquire an impressive collection of in Primo, focused on promoting Teaching Excellence through a student and human centered lens. These texts provide inspiration for small changes and instructional moves you can make is your teaching. Make sure you "check them out" today!


If you are having difficulty or you have unanswered questions, please contact the Help Desk through the ITS Service Catalog or call (518) 388-6400.


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Article ID: 95152
Fri 1/3/20 1:30 PM
Thu 11/2/23 5:17 PM