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What does Brightspace offer?

Brightspace offers a wide range of features, in an attractive, modern, and engaging user interface. Here are some of its strengths:

  • Intuitive drag-and-drop authoring for creating engaging content including audio and video.
  • Powerful course templates that make it easy to get going and support a consistent course experience for students across courses.
  • A rich mobile learning experience with responsive, accessible web pages and the Brightspace Pulse app which helps students stay in touch and connected with notifications, upcoming tasks, grades and course content which can be downloaded for offline access later.
  • Assessment, feedback and grading features that support both flexible grading schemes and Mastery views for learning outcomes.
  • Student progress monitoring and analytics, with Intelligent Agents that help you target communications to students based on site activity or attainment.
  • Seamless integration with Microsoft Teams allows you to use the best of both platforms by including Teams meetings in Brightspace courses, and Brightspace in Teams sites, with membership synchronized between platforms.
  • Brightspace is a cloud service hosted on Amazon Web Services, with a consistent 99.99% global uptime, so it’s available 24x7 when you need it.


What are the implementation timelines for Brightspace?

  • January 2022 to June 2022: Setup and implementation of Brightspace. Discussion of migration timeframes with Faculties. Information and training sessions start, with early access to Brightspace when available on request.
  • July 2022 to December 2022: Selected second semester courses may opt to use Brightspace, subject to migration plans agreed with Faculties.
  • 2023: Most UCT courses use Brightspace. Some courses may continue to use Vula if needed. Brightspace familiarity is included in Orientation week.
  • 2024: All UCT courses are expected to have moved to Brightspace. Vula is available for continued access to prior year courses and non-course uses.
  • 2025: Vula no longer available, or available only in read-only form as an archive.

Keen to get going? Submit an expression of interest for early access to Brightspace in 2022.


How will courses move from Vula to Brightspace?

CILT will provide active support for moving courses from Vula to Brightspace, including:

  • migration of course content (e.g., Lessons pages) and assessments (e.g., Assignments and Quizzes)
  • the development of course site templates for departments, programmes, and Faculties, to help provide students with a consistent high-quality experience across their courses
  • advice and direct assistance to restructure or re-design course sites where needed.

We will work closely with course convenors and lecturers to minimize the amount of manual work involved, allowing you to focus on the decisions which only you can take about how to best present your course in the new environment, and take advantage of the new capabilities in Brightspace.


What training and support will be available for Brightspace for students and staff?

CILT will be running a set of webinars and hands-on workshops about Brightspace starting in February 2022, accompanied by guides and resources about migrating from Vula to Brightspace and the differences between the platforms. Student orientation will be planned to support the migration schedule.

To explore on your own, visit the Brightspace Support FAQs, Tutorials and Documentation and the Resource Library, or ask peers from other universities in the Brightspace Community.



Contact the CILT Helpdesk at help@vula.uct.ac.za or call 021-650-5500 during working hours.