Information Technology Services Newsletter.  Stay In the Loop!

In the Loop
Information Technology Services Newsletter
Microsoft IT Academy
Information Technology Services is pleased to announce the launch of the Microsoft IT Academy program to equip  faculty and staff with real-world technology skills needed to thrive in today’s economy. University of Toronto joins more than 15,000 Microsoft IT Academies around the world.

The Microsoft IT Academy program is a comprehensive program that supports ongoing technology education for faculty and staff spanning computer basics to high-level programming, along with information and communications technology management using Microsoft technologies. The program’s resources include access to online learning content, Official Microsoft Course titles course materials and curriculum and instructor tools.
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New NGSIS Website & Blog

Following McLuhan’s guidance that the medium is the message we set out to create a web space that has a more modern look and feel, provides useful and engaging content and would allow visitors to dig into the depths and complexity of this program if they desired.

Through the new NGSIS website and blog, we aim to provide transparency to the whats, whys, hows and whens of the NGSIS program and its various projects.

The website offers layers of information intended to meet you at your level of interest and time available. At a glance you will find all in-progress projects with their completion percentages on our project list page. Further, you may wish to review a just the facts summary of each project or, for the ambitious, dive deeper into the narrative stories behind each project to learn more about why certain projects were initiated, the problem we were trying to solve and how we came to achieve these results. We have devoted time and energy into these stories because we think it’s important to share some of the lessons we’ve learned along the way and to share context for how certain solutions have come to be.

The blog is an opportunity for us to share aspects of the program in a more conversational manner. We will have regular updates on program activities, a regular series of post contributors and invite guests to provide their take on NGSIS related matters. If you’re interested, subscribe to our blog to receive updates when a new post is up.

If you have any comments feel free to leave them or if you have an idea to suggest to NGSIS by all means let us know!

Explore NGSIS
CIO Updates:

New Reports 

The Office of the CIO has published the following reports and updates:

Faculty and Staff eCommunications Consultation:

Faculty and Staff eCommunications Advisory Committee Final Report 

Administrative Response to the Faculty and Staff eCommunications Advisory Committee Final Report 

Information Risk and Risk Management Report for Faculty and Staff e-Communications Outsourcing Project 

Draft Cyber Risk Mitigation Policy: 

Following extensive community feedback and consultation, a new version of the Draft Cyber Risk Mitigation Policy is now published for discussion. 

Curious about ACORN?

One of the next major initiatives due for release via the
NGSIS program is

The purpose of ACORN is to provide a more convenient, personalized
and guided experience for students using
U of T’s online services.


Shellshock Vulnerability

For the official statement on the Bourne Again Shell (bash) vulnerability please go to the ITS Website. 

Click here for the advisory.

From HSE:

Health and Safety Awareness Program

A friendly reminder from the Office of the Environmental Health and Safety to all faculty and staff to complete the Health and Safety Awareness Program.  For more details, please click here


SecurID Card is being replaced with eToken by 
October 31st, 2014

Please be advised the SecurID card is being replaced with a new product called the ‘eToken’ as per earlier announcements about the new project.

There are a number of staff whose SecurID cards will expire on October 31st, 2014.   The affected staff should be receiving their eTokens before the SecurID expiry date, if they haven’t received them already.  

Departments will provide information on how to use the eToken. Staff can also get information by clicking here.

Designing with Users in Mind

Over the past two years we have been refining our approach to designing and developing online student services in NGSIS. On the design side of things, the outcome of this process is a structured User Centred Design (UCD) methodology which places the needs and goals of our end users first and foremost in our approach. We have found this methodology to be an effective and efficient way to solve challenging problems and provide maximum benefit through our NGSIS projects.

Our UCD design approach will be the topic of an ongoing series of posts through this blog and recently Mike and I were interviewed by Elizabeth O’Gorek for U of T’s In The Loop newsletter to discuss this very issue. Read the full article if you’re interested and stay tuned for more on this in the coming weeks.

We are pleased to announce that Marden Paul will chair TechKnowFile 2015.  
A call for the planning committee will be released in mid-October.  
Stay tuned for more details!
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