Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Subscribing to Outlook (Exchange) Calendars in Google Calendar or Other Programs

You can subscribe to your EIPS Exchange calendar (the one that you access through Outlook) in other programs such as Google Calendar.

To start, log in to webmail and click on the Calendar tab.

Right-click on your calendar and choose permissions...

In the drop-down menu next to Public Calendar choose Full details

Click SAVE

Again, right-click on your calendar and choose permissions...

Right-click on Subscribe to Calendar

and choose Copy shortcut

Paste that link into Notepad or some other program and you should see that it looks something like

If your link doesn't have an "s" in "https" at the beginning, you'll need to add it in.

You now have a link you can paste in to your other calendar program. For Google Calendar, follow the instructions here:

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Troubleshooting "Safety in Schools"


Go to Tools/Internet Options

Click the security tab

Select Trusted sites and then click the Sites button.

Type in and click the Add button

Now, ensure that the "Require server verification..." check box is not checked.  Then click the close button.

Now close the browser, reopen the browser and try taking the course again.


Andrew Kelly

Sales Executive

Safety in Schools Foundation of Canada


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

EIPS Moodle: Signing Up and Enrolling in a Course

If you need to enroll in a course on the EIPS Moodle site (, click Login at the top right of the page.

Then on the right side of the screen, click the Create new account button.

Fill in the information. Be sure to pick an appropriate username, and use your school email address. Then click the Create my new account button.

The system will then send you a confirmation, so go check your school email.

Click the link in the email you were sent.

This will bring you back to the Moodle site, logged in as your new account. Click on the Courses button. Make sure you remember the username and password that you put in, or else you will have to use the "Forgotten your username or password?" feature to have Moodle email you your password.

Find the course(s) that you need.

For example, under the CTS CTF heading you will find Workplace Safety Systems (HCS3000). Click on a course name to enter.

If you would like to join the course, click the Enrol me button. If an enrolment key is required, you will get it from your teacher or administrator.

You are now able to participate in the online portion of your course. Remember to log out at the end of your session by clicking Logout at the top right.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Apple TV Cables and iPad Cases: Online Shopping

Some of the items we've previously recommended are no longer available, so here's an updated list of recommendations for connecting an Apple TV to a projector.

To connect an Apple TV to a projector, you usually need an HDMI to VGA converter. Your best bet is probably this one from DealExtreme.

I'd also recommend a VGA switch so you don't have to keep swapping the VGA cable between your computer and the Apple TV. Some options are this from Amazon, this from DealExtreme, or this from Monoprice. You'll also need a couple of extra VGA cables, which can be found around your school or from one of these online retailers.
If you are using a VGA splitter to have the same image appear on a monitor and the projector, you can put the VGA switch before that splitter to have the Apple TV image appear on both, or you can put the switch after the splitter to have the Apple TV image appear just on the projector.

You may also want to to be able to have both the Apple TV and a computer hooked up to the same set of speakers. If your speakers don't have two inputs, you can get a headphone splitter such as this one from DealExtreme or this nicer one from Monoprice. You'll also need a male-male 1/8" (3.5mm) cable.

If you're just looking to convert the HDMI video signal to VGA, your cheapest option is probably this one from DealExtreme or this one from Amazon.

If you're using an HDMI to VGA device that doesn't convert the digital audio to analog audio for speakers, you'll need an optical audio to analog audio converter such as item 6884 from Monoprice (or this one from DealExtreme). If you're plugging in regular computer speakers to one of those you'll probably also need something like item 5612 or this from DX.

For iPad cases, my favorite is the Monoprice TPU skin, available in red or smoke. It's also available for the iPad mini in black or clear.

In general, my favorite sites for cables, electronics, and such are Monoprice, DealExtreme, Element14, and of course Amazon.
  • Monoprice has high quality items, great organization, good prices, and pretty quick shipping. Unfortunately the shipping is not cheap, and if you order more than about four pounds worth, you will likely get charged import duty at the Canadian border.
  • DealExtreme has very cheap prices, and free shipping, but unfortunately the shipping is slow and there are a lot of products to sift through to find ones that might be good for your purposes.
  • Element14 has great products that are well organized, but again there are a lot to look through. Unfortunately it's designed more as an electronics components site, so they may not have the cables or electronics that you're looking for. Shipping is very quick and inexpensive, though, and prices are good.
If you just need HDMI cables or cheap headphones, though, I'd recommend stopping by your local Dollarama or XS Cargo.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Creating a Leaderboard using Google Docs

If you're trying gamification and you'd like to have a live leaderboard for a class or an event, the easiest (free) way I've found to do it with a spreadsheet in Google Drive.

Basically this involves creating a form that participants (or facilitators) submit to claim points and setting up a pivot table in the spreadsheet for adding up the points. The pivot table can be made public, embedded in a web page, and/or put up on a screen as a leaderboard.

The first step is to create a form in your Google Drive. The first question should be the participant's name, either as a text question (where they have to spell it the same way each time) or Choose from a list if you don't have too many participants. The other question(s) should be Multiple choice, Choose from a list, or maybe Check boxes for claiming which "challenges" they have completed. The easiest way is to have just a single multiple choice question.

What follows are a couple of examples.

Once your form is set up, you'll need to set up the spreadsheet to add up the points as participants click submit. Submit the form once yourself to see what the output will look like, then in the columns to the right you will need to input formulas for calculating points. In the example below the formula in cell D2 is =if(C2="Beginner", 1, 0) and the formula in F2 is =if(C2="Intermediate", 5, 0) . Cell G1 is =sum(D2:F2) of course.

Once you have formulas for the all of the necessary columns in row 2 (the row containing the first submitted form data), you'll need to create a script that copies those formulas to each new row as the form is submitted. I've written about this before. In our example, we'd open the script editor and create a new script like this:

function addFormula() {
  var sheet = SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet();
  var startRow = 2;
  var startColumn = 4;
  var numberRows = 1;
  var numberColumns = 4;
  var lastRow = sheet.getLastRow();
  var sourceRange = sheet.getRange(startRow, startColumn, numberRows, numberColumns);
  var destinationRange = sheet.getRange(lastRow, startColumn, numberRows, numberColumns);

Then set the Current project's triggers to be addFormula when the spreadsheet event On form submit occurs. Your spreadsheet should now calculate points for each row, each row will be data from a form submission.

The last step is to create a Pivot table report... in your spreadsheet (under the Data menu). The range in our example is 'Form Responses'!B:G since (from the Form Responses sheet) we want participant names (column B) as well as the calculated values (columns D to G). In the Report Editor you should add the name field under Rows, and the totals under Values, as in this example.

You can now Share and/or Publish to the web... your pivot table, since it's now a leaderboard that will automatically update as participants submit the form. You'll also want to delete any unused rows in the Form Responses sheet so that you don't have an extra blank line in your leaderboard.

Let me know if that works for you, of if there's anything I should clarify.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Social Media Unblocked

Now that the category “social media” is no longer blocked on the EIPS network, staff and students need to be even more cognizant of digital citizenship. On Staff Connect you will find Administrative Procedure 142 which contains procedures and guidelines for the use of social media. The Administrative Procedure and the Guidelines documents can also be found at

Administrative Procedure 142 highlights issues related to FOIP (Freedom of Information and Privacy), copyright, training and guidelines by Instructional Services, IT risk assessment by Tech Services, school Administrator involvement in social media used for educational purposes, respecting terms and conditions of the sites, and other standards for school use of social media with students and parents.

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please feel free to contact Instructional Services.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Subscribing to our Podcast

I've had a few people ask how they can get notified when new episodes of our podcast are available. There are a few different ways.

If you use Twitter, follow @eipstech where we'll automatically post every time a new episode is ready.

If you'd like to get an email whenever we post a new episode, go to and click the Subscribe button. You'll be asked to log in (or create an account), you can use a personal Gmail account or your school Google Apps account. Subscribing to our YouTube channel means that you can get an email notification when we post new videos.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Automatically Adding Column Data to Google Form Submissions with a Script

I've often come across the issue of wanting to manipulate data that has been submitted with a Google Spreadsheets Form. For example, automatically marking and totaling formative quizzes where students submit their answers in a Google Form.

Unfortunately when a user submits a form, a new row with those data is inserted on the spreadsheet. This means any formulas that you've manually added to the Spreadsheet will be above or below that row.

To solve this issue, I wrote a Script that copies (to that inserted row) the contents of the columns you've added in the first row.

function addFormula() {
  var sheet = SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet();
  var startRow = 2;
  var startColumn = 8;
  var numberRows = 1;
  var numberColumns = 15;
  var lastRow = sheet.getLastRow();
  var sourceRange = sheet.getRange(startRow, startColumn, numberRows, numberColumns);
  var destinationRange = sheet.getRange(lastRow, startColumn, numberRows, numberColumns);

The meanings of the variables are:
sheet is a shortcut so we don't have to keep typing SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet()
startRow is the row number that's the source of your formula that you want to copy
startColumn is the column number where your source formula starts
numberRows should usually be 1, it's the number of rows that you would like to copy each time
numberColumns is the number of columns that contain your source formula
lastRow is a shortcut so we don't have to type sheet.getLastRow() when we want to use it
sourceRange collects together the information to tell copyTo where to get the data
destinationRange collects together the the information to tell copyTo where to put it

If you prefer, this could also be done in a single line without all of the variable declarations:

function addFormula() {SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet().getRange(2, 8, 1, 15).copyTo(SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet().getRange(SpreadsheetApp.getActiveSheet().getLastRow(), 8, 1, 15))};

To add this script to your spreadsheet of data from a Google Form

  1. open the spreadsheet and under the Tools menu choose Script editor...
  2. under "Create script for" click Spreadsheet
  3. delete everything in the pane and replace it with the script from this blog post
  4. if necessary, change the numbers for the variables to what they should be for your spreadsheet
  5. under the File menu click Save
  6. under the Resources menu click Current script's triggers...
  7. if you haven't already named your project, do so now in the box that comes up
  8. click No triggers set up. Click here to add one now.
  9. in the third drop-down list, select On form submit
  10. click the Save button

And you're done. The script will run whenever a user submits the form, and it will copy the formulas that you've set up on the first line of submitted data. Leave a comment below if this works for you or if you have any questions.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Making Moodle Quizzes in Microsoft Word

The quiz creator in Moodle is not particularly easy to use. If you're more comfortable in Microsoft Word, Vyatcheslav Yatskovsky has created a Word template for Moodle quiz creation.

1. Download the file and extract the contents.

2. Open the file in Microsoft Word. You should be able to just double-click it.

3. You'll now have a blank document, but with an "Add-Ins" tab for question types.

4. There's also a security warning that "Macros have been disabled." Re-enable them by clicking on Options... and choosing Enable this content.

5. You can now add questions using the buttons in the Add-Ins tab.

6. Press the Enter key at the end of the line where you type your question to record the possible answers. The first answer is the correct one, you'll have the chance to change the order when you import into Moodle.

7. Once you've created your questions, click the CleanUp button to check for errors. Correct any errors that it tells you about. If there are no errors, it will tell you "Now everything is OK".

8. Click the Export button to make an XML file that is ready to be uploaded to Moodle. Make sure you select "Word XML Document (*.xml)" from the Save as type drop-down list.

The Developer also recommends that "you to save your quizzes into the same folder where .dot is located because the macro needs the /xml-question folder to proceed with the export. You can still edit the quiz without the distribution files at all but it is the export operation that relies on them."

9. You now have an XML file with your questions that you can import into Moodle. You can either import questions into the Question bank for a course (under course settings on the left) or directly into a quiz (under quiz settings when you are editing a quiz).

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

How to Enable an AirPlay Password

If you're finding that students, or other staff, are interrupting your presentations when you're using AirPlay from your iPad, you might want to temporarily set a password. It's easy to set up, and it's easy to disable the password when you've finished.

1. Using the Apple TV remote, open the Settings app. It's at the top right in the current interface.

2. Go to the AirPlay menu.

3. Choose Set Password.

4. Input your chosen password, then select Submit on the right.

Now when someone tries to AirPlay from their iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch, they will be asked for that password.

When you no longer need it to be password protected, go back to the AirPlay menu and choose Clear Password.