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Quick Start Guide for Rabb/GPS Students


All GPS courses have a consistent course structure in LATTE. We call this our "shell," and it means that when you enter a GPS online course, you will consistently be able to retrieve material of interest in the same location.

GPS and Brandeis University regularly review and update the standard shell to ensure that is it functional and accessible for all students.

Why did GPS switch from the buttons format to the collapsible sections format? Unfortunately the buttons are not accessible for students who use screenreaders to navigate their courses. The new Collapsible Sections format allows Brandeis to be accessible and inclusive to our students.

Top Section

Each course will display the name of the course and your instructor's contact information. Below that are the Course Information area and Communications Center.

Course Information

  • Course Announcements: Instructors use this forum to communicate general news and announcements to everyone in the course. This is a way for instructors to reach all students with important information and includes an archive of postings. You are automatically subscribed to this forum to ensure that you will receive a copy of the postings via email.
  • Course Syllabus: A syllabus is both a document about the course content, goals, and elements and a guide for students to the kind of teaching and learning they can expect in the class. Some courses may include a PDF syllabus but many are using a Google Doc version instead for easier sharing and viewing.

Communications Center

  • Private Forum with Professor: Many instructors will enable a Private Forum which you can use to communicate one-on-one with your instructor. As a private forum, no other students in the course can view your posts or the instructor's replies to you. If you are subscribed to the forum, you will receive emails alerting you to responses to your posts.
  • Ask the Class: Use the Ask the Class forum to pose questions to your classmates and browse past questions. Often, you'll have a question that others in the class either know the answer to, or others would benefit from seeing the answer to your question (because they have the same question, too!). Your instructor will periodically check this forum to answer any questions that are not addressed by students.

Course Overview & Resources

The top section of each course is a static resource section that you can return to at any point in the course. Your instructor will include a brief message providing an overview of themselves and the course. This section also includes links to find support, information about any books or tools you may need to purchase, and the grading rubrics used for your assignments and discussions. 

Find Help

This section includes links and information to contact the Online Course Support Center where support staff are available 24/7 to address any questions or problems you're having with LATTE. It also includes links to the library services for Rabb/GPS students. All of this information is also included in the sidebar blocks in each course as well as in the navigation sidebar in this guide.

Course Materials and Tools

Your instructor will include information and links (as appropriate) to any textbooks and tools required for this course. GPS instructors try to include free, open access, or library materials whenever possible to save costs for you. If there are no textbooks or external tools for a course, you won't see this area.

Grading Rubrics

Most of your instructors will list their rubrics for discussions and assignments in this area so you can refer to them without needing to navigate to the week when the assignment is due. Each rubric is available within each assignment but you can view all of them together here.

Weekly Sections

Your materials and activities for each week are located within a collapsible section. You can keep any sections that you don't need collapsed to reduce the amount of scrolling. Each section is organized in similar ways to help you locate what you need.

Tip: You can click on either the arrow or the text with the dates to expand and collapse each section.

Week Topic

At the top of each section, you'll see a brief overview for the week. This should help you know what to expect from the week and may include what you should focus on. Your instructor will also include a few learning objectives for the week so you can track for yourself how well you're mastering the content.

Read and Review

 All readings and videos for the week will be listed here. Any materials that are available digitally will include links. Many instructors will include an estimate for how long you should expect to spend on that week's materials.

Complete Assignments

If you have an assignment due that week, you will see a Complete Assignments area in that week's section. Your instructor will include a brief overview of the assignment on the course page. The full description and grading criteria will be available in an attached document or in the assignment activity itself.

Participation Feedback or Reflection and Participation Feedback

Your instructor will include one of these two areas at the bottom of each section. Regardless of which one you see, this area will include an activity where your instructor will post their feedback and grade for your weekly participation in the discussion forums. 

If you see the End-of-Week Reflection and Participation Feedback area, your instructor will have a short prompt for you to reflect on what you've learned that week and highlight any questions you still have about the material that wasn't answered through the discussions or assignments.

Right-Side Blocks

Along the right side of the course, you will see a series of blocks. These blocks contain resources to support you in both your course and GPS. The standard blocks are displayed horizontally below for convenience, they will display vertically in your courses. Your instructor may choose to add additional blocks at their discretion.

LATTE Helpdesk and Library Resources: Contains a link to contact the dedicated LATTE support services (email, chat, and phone) for GPS students and links to commonly accessed library resources. 

Accessibility: The accessibility block allows you to customize LATTE pages to meet your accessibility requirements.

LATTE Course Tools: Contains links for you to view your Grades on course assignments and to browse syllabi for other GPS courses.

GPS Resources: Contains links to common resources needed as a GPS student. This guide is located in this block for easy access any time you need a refresher on using LATTE. We encourage you to follow us on the social media channels linked in this block to stay updated on the exciting things happening at GPS!

Tip: LATTE courses are fully responsive to your screen size and will adjust the layout accordingly. If you're on a small screen like a tablet or mobile phone, the blocks will relocate to the bottom of the page so the most important content (your coursework) is accessible with less scrolling. Blocks are not available at all if you're using the mobile app.

Left-Side Menu

The menu on the left side of your course page can be expanded or collapsed based on your personal needs and preferences. You may prefer to keep the menu collapsed to maximize the space on the rest of the screen for the course materials. Or you may prefer to keep it expanded because you like the navigation features that it offers. To expand or collapse the menu, click the button in the upper left corner of any course page. 

clicking the menu scales the content on the page