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Frequently asked questions

Looks like you may be looking for answers. I'm betting that our fine team of web gnomes can assist.

CTQ Web Gnomes will answer your FAQs

Below, you'll find a listing of topics that are related to the Collaboratory.

Chances are quite high that you can find an answer in the corresponding section, however, if you're still in need of assistance, you can submit a support request and we'll jump right in to solve your issue.

Enjoy your Collaboratory experience! Thanks for all that you do.

 

Joining the Collaboratory

Collaboratory, Geo Labs, Content Labs? Tell me more.

Discussions

Dashboard

Inbox

Inserting Images

Attaching Files

Groups and Labs

Password

Profile and Notification Settings

Resources

Blogs

Missing Links

 

Joining the Collaboratory

How do I know which role to select?

Multiple categories may apply to you. (Retired Teacher and Engaged Citizen, for example.) Choose the one that fits you best and that you want others to see on your profile.

I'm having trouble with the Join form.

You must fill out every field in the form, so make sure you have done that. Also, check to see that your Username is FirstnameLastname (no spaces) and that your Password includes at least six characters. If you're still having trouble, fill out this quick feedback form and we'll be happy to assist.

Who can join the Collaboratory? 

Anyone who values teachers as leaders (and who is over the age of 18). The Labs within the Collaboratory are reserved for teachers, preservice teachers, and retired teachers. 

What if I decide I no longer want to be part of the Collaboratory?

You can make this choice at any time by visiting the settings tab on your Dashboard. Your user account will be deleted from the system.

 

Collaboratory, Geo Labs, Content Labs? Tell me more.

Who can see what I post in the Collaboratory?

Only logged-in Collaboratory members can read what you post there. In Content and Geo Labs, only members of that Lab can see what you post. Nothing you write can be found via open internet searches. All Collaboratory members have agreed to abide by our community norms.

What's the difference between the Collaboratory and the Content and Geo Labs?

The Collaboratory is open to all who value teachers as leaders. Everyone who is part of CTQ's virtual community is a Collaboratory member. The Collaboratory is a great place for teachers to make connections with administrators, parents, policymakers, and others who seek to transform our schools. 

The Content Labs are private spaces for teachers, preservice teachers, and retired teachers to focus on discussion and collaboration around a particular topic or set of topics. In these private spaces, practitioners can test and develop their ideas before sharing with the broader Collaboratory. 

Geo Labs offer teachers in targeted states the opportunity to collaborate to change policy and practice on the local level: CTQ-Colorado, CTQ-Florida, CTQ-Illinois, and CTQ-Washington. These are private spaces open only to teachers who are members of the Lab.

Teacherpreneurs is a Lab open to all members of the Collaboratory. We invite you to join this Lab to discuss the hybrid model of teacher leader, the teacherpreneur, made famous in a recent publication by our CEO and COO, Teacherpreneurs: Innovative Teachers Who Lead But Don't Leave.

How do I join a Content Lab or Geo Lab?

First things first: fill out your Profile. Next: go to the public page for that Lab (you can find all the Labs listed on the Collaboratory page, midway down) and click join.

Why isn't there a Geo Lab for my state?

More Geo Labs will be formed as resources and partnerships evolve in additional states (and nations).

How do I know what Labs I belong to?

The Groups tab on your Dashboard indicates Labs you belong tor.

 

Discussions

How do I find discussions?

Your Dashboard is a great place to begin. On the default view (activity feed) your dashboard shows recent activity. You can see more activity by clicking on the link at the bottom of the page.

Prefer to see discussions only? Select the Groups tab on your dashboard, then select the Collaboratory or a Lab.

I want to post a new discussion.

Great! From your Dashboard or a Groups page, click on New Post at left.

How do I know who will see my discussion post?

You will make the choice by selecting from the groups listed at the bottom of the post.

How do I decide whether to post to the Collaboratory or one or more Labs?

It's up to you. The Collaboratory is where you can discuss a wide range of topics with all members of our community. So teachers—as well as administrators, university educators, and others—will be able to see and reply to your discussion post. The Content and Geo Labs are teacher-only spaces for more focused inquiry on particular topics or locale-specific issues. Note: you can select for a discussion to appear to both the Collaboratory and one or more Labs to which you belong.

What does the "save" button mean?

You can "save" a discussion, resource, or blog post, and it will be collected in the Saved Items tab on your dashboard. (Don't worry, you can also "unsave" things.)

When I "like" a discussion post or reply, who will know it?

Those who have selected you as a Connection will see this if the post or reply is in a group they belong to. This is NOT connected to Facebook.

Who will see my replies to a discussion?

Near the top of a discussion post, you will see the groups that the author has designated for the post. Members of those groups will see replies.

 

Dashboard

How can I change what's in my activity feed?

Your Dashboard compiles all of the latest activity from the Collaboratory and any Labs to which you belong. If you have subscribed to any resources or blogs, newly added items will appear in your feed as well. You can change your feed by joining a Lab or by leaving a Lab (which you can do in Settings) or by subscribing or unsubscribing to a resource or blog.

What are Opportunities?

Opportunities share ways that you can learn and lead. Some appear to all Collaboratory members, while others are customized to appear to select teachers (e.g., all principals in a certain state, or all NBCTs, or all science teachers). Filling out your profile helps us tailor opportunities for you.

What are Connections?

When you "connect" with another member, you can get a sense of what they've been discussing and learning on the site. (You cannot see their private inbox messages or any activities that occur in a Lab to which you do not belong.)

How do I Connect with a member?

Click on their name to go to their profile, then select "Connect" near the top.

When I select a new Connection, is the person notified?

No. However, your profile will show your connections.

Why are certain Connections "suggested" for me?

A special algorithm recommends Connections based on data about you and your activity. (Just like Amazon recommends certain items for you to purchase!)

 

Inbox

What is my Inbox?

Collaboratory members can send private messages to your Inbox. Only you can see these messages. Click on the Inbox tab from your Dashboard to access them.

How do I send a message?

From your Inbox: Click on Write New Message. Click Save to send your message.

From elsewhere: Click on the member's name to go to his or her profile. In the green toolbar at top, click on Send a Message. Click Save to send your message.

How will I know if I have new messages?

You will be notified of new Inbox messages from your Dashboard page. If you have unread messages, you will see a number next to the Inbox tab.

Inserting Images

I'm having trouble inserting images in a post or message.

  1. Click on the image icon. (It looks like a tiny photo of mountains and sun.)
  2. You'll see an Image Properties pop-up window. On the first tab, Image Info, click on the Browse Server button.
  3. A big window will open. At the top lefthand corner, select the Upload icon and choose your image.
  4. Select a size and click Upload.
  5. Now you'll see your image's name highlighted in blue in the large window. Click on the Insert file  (with the green check mark).
  6. Back to the small window! Click on Insert File.

Attaching Files

How can I attach a file (Word, PDF, etc.) to my blog post, discussion post, comment, or inbox message?

  1. Highlight the text that you would like to link to the attachment.
  2. Click the link icon.
  3. A link pop-up window will open. Click Browse Server.
  4. A big window will open. At the top lefthand corner, select the Upload icon and choose your file.
  5. Click Upload.
  6. Now you'll see your document's name highlighted in blue in the large window. Click on Insert File at top left (with the green check mark).
  7. Back to the small window! Select the Target tab. Select New Window (_blank) from the options.
  8. Select OK.

Groups and Labs

What is a group? Why's it called a Lab?

We love how "Lab" sounds - a place for innovation and experimentation. All community members are a part of at least one group Lab—the CTQ Collaboratory. Teachers (current, retired, or pre-service) are also invited to join other Labs based on their geographic location or specific topical areas such as Common Core, Innovative Leadership and Classroom Practice. Interested in joining a Lab? Check out that section of the FAQs.

We invite all interested Collaboartory Members to join the Teacherpreneurs Lab to discuss the hybrid concept of the teacherpreneur made famous in a publication from our CEO and COO, Teacherpreneurs: Innovative Teachers Who Lead But Don't Leave

Where can I see all the groups I belong to?

From your Dashboard page, select the Groups tab. You'll see a list of your groups.

Where can I see what’s happening in all of my groups?

You can see all recent activity your Dashboard if you select the top "activity feed" tab. If you want to see activity in just one group, select one from the Groups tab.

How do I start a new discussion in one of my groups?

From your Dashboard or a Group Page: select New Post. At the bottom of the page, you'll see a way to indicate which groups should see it.

 

Password

I forgot my username and/or password.

No worries—you have a lot of important things going on! You can request to reset your password. The email will also include your username. 

I want to change my password. 

You can change your password by navigating to your "My Profile" drop down menu in the upper right hand corner of the Collaboratory (you must be logged in to see this). Visit "Edit Profile" and under "Account Details" you are able to change your password.

 

Profile and Notification Settings

Why do you want to know so much about me?

Who you are and what you do is interesting to us! When you provide us with details, we can be better matchmakers. And sharing data also helps us paint a picture of our community for funders—important for CTQ as a nonprofit.

Why should I add a picture?

Because we want to see your beautiful face, of course! It is not required, but we hope you’ll add an image. Being able to "see" one another makes the Collaboratory a welcoming community.

My picture makes the top of my head look "chopped off" in my profile. How can I fix it?

The circular frame automatically positions itself over the center of whatever image you upload. Try using a basic photo editor to crop the image so that your face is at the center of the photo.

Will you share my information?

We will not share your demographic information (mailing address, phone number, etc.) with any outside organization or other members of the Collaboratory. Only information you select as viewable by others can be seen by other members of the Collaboratory.

What if I want to delete or deactivate my profile?

Well, we may be a bit sad, but we're certainly able to accomodate that request! Drop us web gnomes a note and be sure to include your username and email you use to log in to the Collaboratory. Please do note that if you choose to do this, and later decide that you want to re-join, you'll need to re-register (and your old username may not be available). 

What types of emails or notifications will you send me?

Great question! All Collaboratory Members can elect how frequently they receive notifications from the Collaboratory, including which bloggers they'd like to follow. Your default setting is to receive a daily digest, sent at 2 p.m. ET. Think that's too much (or too little, because you want to stay as up-to-date as possible)? You can change your settings by navigating to your "My Profile" drop down menu in the upper right hand corner of the Collaboratory (you must be logged in to see this).

You'll also receive an email anytime someone sends you a private message on the Collaboratory. You can read and respond to private messages on the Collaboratory - but we added the email feature so that you won't miss a new message from a fellow Member.

We'd also love to send you our monthly newsletter, generally sent the first Tuesday of every month. It's chock full of great information. You can opt out of that e-newsletter at any time.

Resources

Why are there so few items in resources? I know CTQ has more stuff than this.

Correct! We still have thousands of resources to upload—but the process is time-consuming. We're adding more each day!

 

Blogs

Who are the bloggers?

Several teacher leaders blog for CTQ on a regular basis, and we occasionally share guest posts. CTQ founder and partner Barnett Berry also blogs here.

How do I create a blog?

The Collaboratory does not offer blog space for individuals at this time. However, you are welcome to link to your own blog on your profile.

 

How do I report a broken URL or missing link?

If you find a broken URL or missing link, please report that resource by submitting a feedback form. Be sure to include the resource name and all pertinent details.