Until recently, at Canisius College we used spaces within our learning management system (ANGEL, D2L) for offices, departments, programs, committees, and other groups on campus to confidentially share documentation or files with each other. These were course shells, repurposed to act as spaces available only to those enrolled or authorized to access them. But COLI (and ITS) staff occasionally hear from users a variety of comments that point to an essential truth: D2L spaces are built to manage courses, and can become clunky when trying to simply manage documentation for groups.
We now have two better solutions for group web spaces that are equally secure, and easier to use. If you are looking for a space that can serve as a set of web pages for documentation, but can also house files that any member of the group can upload, Confluence, our wiki, is a good choice. Our wiki self-paced training space is just one example of what can easily and quickly be done with Confluence.
If you really only need online storage space for files, but need that space to be exclusively available to your faculty or staff, we recommend Google Drive. Have a department member create a folder in their Google Drive, share it with other department members, and then each can upload files to this space for others to see. Google also has a lightweight office suite built in, so that files can be created natively in Google Drive and editable there by any group member. Additionally, Google Drive is fast becoming a business standard, so users will find it beneficial to use Google Drive in other professional activities as well. We have plenty of Google Drive training content at our wiki space
We run workshops for both Google Drive and Confluence but COLI staff would be happy to meet with offices or departments as a group to get them started with either (or both) options. Google Drive is probably a little simpler than the wiki, but if you decided after trying out Google Drive that you really wanted to use the wiki, it is quick to learn. Plus, documents already put into a Google Drive folder could simply be linked in the wiki, so your Google Drive investment is sound.
Schedule an appointment with a COLI staff member today to discuss these options!