System Administrators: Getting Started On Schoology
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This guide provides the resources for System Administrators to successfully work with their Schoology representative, and establish a working framework to implement Schoology. Our recommended framework includes a review of user accounts, provisioning methods, and authentication and login methods.
The information below is focused on the resources you'll need while setting up your school's Enterprise Schoology account.
Setting Up the Framework
Roles and Permissions
Schoology is based on roles and permissions. Every Schoology user is associated with a specific role. The System Administrator can customize the permissions associated with each role and set the privacy thresholds for courses, groups, and user profiles.
Overview of User Accounts
To create and manage individual user information, navigate to the Manage Users area of your Schoology account.
Click on the tabs along the top of the screen to modify different fields of user information.
There are a few key points about the relationship between your data and user login:
- Without SSO, users can log in using either a username or an email address.
- If you are planning to use SSO with either LDAP or Google Apps, keep in mind that in order to pass user credentials, each user must have one field that is consistent between Schoology and your authentication source:
- If you're using LDAP/Remote Authentication: Schoology Username or Unique ID must match LDAP
- If you're using Google: Schoology Username or account Email Address must match Google credentials
Unique IDs are used to update user accounts with new information. Your Student Information System (SIS), Customer Relationship Manager (CRM), or Content Management System (CMS) probably also has a unique User ID (e.g., a student ID), which you can use to populate Unique IDs in Schoology. Unique IDs must be unique throughout your entire Schoology system, across both instructors and students. Unique IDs cannot be updated through an import after the account has been created. Pay special attention when deciding how this field should be mapped.
Migrating Existing Free Instructor Accounts
If you have instructors who are actively using the free version of Schoology or who have materials they’d like to save from an existing free account please review these options:
- Instructors can merge free accounts into the Enterprise account from their account settings.
- You can activate Claim Domain in the Integration tab to prevent instructors from creating free accounts with their school email address and to pull in existing users with this domain during the import process.
Your Schoology representative can merge free schools into your Enterprise account. However, this method can often introduce data cleansing challenges for the System Administrator. Be sure to discuss your reasons for merging schools with your Schoology representative. They may be able to recommend a more efficient option.
Data Provisioning Methods
Data Population Option 1: Imports
In each import screen, you must enter some data while other data is optional. Columns listed with an asterisk (*) are required. Columns listed with two asterisks (**) indicate that you must include either one or the other (or both) fields. For example, while uploading users, you’re required to include a Username and/or an Email Address for each user. Available fields are listed at the top of each import tab. YourSchoology representative can also supply you with sample CSV templates.
Each import is a three-step process.
- Select file: Initially upload the file and select import settings.
- Match columns: Prepare data for import by mapping column names.
- Preview/confirm: Carefully review the data as it will appear in Schoology.
You will bring your data into Schoology in the following order:
- Course Enrollments
- Group Enrollments (Optional)
Navigate to the Import page.
You can provision your users using a CSV or XLS import file. This file is commonly generated from your Student Information System (SIS), Customer Relations Manager (CRM), or Content Management System (CMS). You can import approximately 10,000 rows of data per import.
The following fields are required in your Import file:
- First Name
- Last Name
- Username and/or Email
- User Unique ID
- School Building
- First Name (Preferred)
- Middle Name
- Name Prefix
- Position/Job title
- Graduation Year
When importing users you must assign users in batches to roles and buildings by adding building ID and role ID columns to your import file.
Schoology will not allow you to create an account for an existing user who has the selected email.
You may also choose to update users’ existing records (matching the users’ Unique ID). You may send an activation email to the users upon import. Do not use this option if your users log in through LDAP or SSO.
After you import your file you’ll have the opportunity to match columns in your file with columns in Schoology. Finally, you will preview the data mapping. Make sure to look this over carefully before confirming the upload.
Import: Courses and Sections
Before importing courses, set up grading period(s) using Grade Settings in School Management.
Set the start and end dates of the grading periods to establish the length of courses. Grading periods will dictate aggregates for instructors’ Gradebook. It is permitted to overlap grading periods however, this is not recommended.
After setting up grading periods, import course information using a CSV or XLS file. To import course information, navigate to the Courses tab in the Import area.
Importing Courses and Sections
Course Sections are the individual instances of a class in a course, such as “periods” or “blocks.” For example, English Literature would be the Course Name, and Period 1 would be the Section Name. Section Codes must be unique within a particular course and grading period. Use Section School Codes if the unique identifier for your section is completely unique across all courses, grading periods, and buildings.
The following fields are required in your Courses/Sections Import file:
- Course Name
- Course Code
- Section Name
- Section Code or Section School Code
Updating Course Details
If you have already imported your courses and simply need to update records, be sure to select the Update Existing Records option at the bottom of the screen. If a mistake is made and courses need to be deleted in bulk, you must contact your Schoology representative or the Schoology Support Team.
Import: Course Enrollments
After you have imported Users and Courses, you are ready to import Course Enrollments. This process associates instructors and students with their classes. To enroll your users into a course, navigate to the Course Enrollment tab.
The Admin of a course is the instructor. Members are the students in the course. You can have more than one Admin per course.
- Course Code
- Section Code or Section School Code
- User Unique ID
- Enrollment Type
- Grading Period
When importing enrollments, select to match either a Section Code or a Section School Code. Refer to the previous section on Course Imports for more information.
If you use Section IDs instead of Course Codes, you do not need to select a Grading period because Section IDs are unique throughout the Enterprise account and are already associated with Grading Periods.
Clear Existing Enrollments Before Import
This setting is useful if you need to remove students from a course. Checking this box will delete all current enrollments for every course listed in the import file. Deletion happens before the import is performed but after you have matched columns and confirmed the import (i.e., you will have a chance to cancel the operation). If students are re-enrolled, their grades will be retained. Enrollments aren’t duplicated if the Clear Existing Enrollments box is left unchecked.
Import: Group Enrollments (Optional)
You may import users into groups. This step is optional as most groups (Faculty Groups, Student Clubs, Student Projects) are not represented in your Student Information System.
Data Population Option 2: Auto-Import
If your school or organization uses an SFTP server or automated imports with other systems, you can enable Schoology to automatically import data from your SIS on a scheduled basis.
How Do Auto-Imports Work?
Your school or organization runs an automated export of data to an SFTP server. From that point, Schoology will automatically pull in the data from the SFTP server to Schoology and update all the necessary information, including users, courses, course enrollments, and parent associations.
What is Required for Auto-Imports?
You must be able to:
- Export files from your SIS as a CSV file with specific columns included in the files
- Manually or automatically upload the files to an SFTP server.
Your Schoology representative will provide you with the necessary templates.
How do I set up my Auto-Import?
After the Kickoff Call, we will schedule a follow-up call to set up the Auto-Import process.
You can choose to first populate your data through the Manual Imports process specified in Option 1. This may help to discover data integrity issues prior to transitioning to automated imports.
The timeline to set up the Auto-Import process will vary depending on the amount of data cleanup required for implementation.
Data Population Option 3: Third-Party SIS Integration
It is possible to sync some student information systems with Schoology to provision schools, terms, users, courses, and enrollments from your SIS into your district's Schoology account.
This option may be a good one for you if your school uses any of the following Student Information Systems:
- Infinite Campus
- SIS Connect (Progressbook, Focus, Synergy)
After the Kickoff Call, we will schedule a follow-up webinar to begin your SIS integration. The implementation is divided into three main parts, plus one optional step:
- Configure the SIS app to connect to your live system (during the webinar).
- Use the Data Preparation Tool in the app to clean up user data.
- Synchronize users.
- In the case of PowerSchool, we can install and configure the PowerSchool Teacher app (Optional).
The timeline for SIS integration will vary depending on the amount of data cleanup necessary for implementation.
Data Population Option 4: Registration with Course Access Codes
Distributing Course Access Codes
Instead of importing users into your system, you can give them access codes to register for their Schoology accounts and courses.
To allow instructors to register by access code, navigate to your Schoology System Settings.
Instructors can also distribute access codes to students to individually register their accounts.
If you choose this method, you will not be able to set up SSO or use data imports to update your user data. Speak with your Schoology representative if you would like to discuss these considerations.
Manually Create Courses
Set up your school’s grading period(s) before instructors create courses. Navigate to the Grade Settings tab in your Schoology System Settings.
You must set the start and end dates of the grading periods to establish the length of your courses. Grading periods will dictate aggregates for your instructors’ Gradebook.
Manually creating courses in your Schoology system is a three-step process. Your faculty can create their own courses as needed.
If you choose this method, we recommend that your users include a course code and section code. This will make it easier to import, export, and manage your courses in the future.
Manually Enroll Users
Students can join courses by entering an access code, or instructors can manually add students with the Add Members button.
Data Population Option 5: Advanced API Provisioning
Instead of manually setting up your system using imports, you can also use our API to programmatically add users and courses from your SIS.
First, request your API key at . Review the API Documentation for more information.
API User Creation
- Refer to User API documentation for user provisioning information.
API Course Creation
- Review the Course API and Course Section API
- Note: You must create the courses before you can create the course sections.
API Course Enrollment
- To enroll users in courses, review the Course Enrollment API documentation.
Login Methods: Authentication and Single Sign-On Options
You can set up Single Sign-On (SSO) between your organization’s directory and Schoology. With this configuration, you can manage user credentials from a centralized location.
Login Option 1: LDAP
This option allows you to connect Schoology directly to your internal LDAP server for SSO. Users can log in to Schoology from your custom domain using their LDAP credentials.
Navigate to your Authentication tab and choose Cloud/On-Premise Directory, then select LDAP.
- You can match Schoology users to LDAP accounts with Usernames or Unique IDs. One of these fields must be present in the LDAP database.
- Make sure to configure the school firewall to accept connections to your LDAP server from our IP addresses.
- Once you have populated user data in Schoology and LDAP and saved the LDAP settings, click Save and then click the Custom Domain tab.
- Set the log-in screen for that directory as your Landing Page in Schoology. When users navigate to your custom domain, they will be redirected to your directory login page. If the user’s credentials are accepted by the directory system, they will be redirected and logged into their Schoology account.
Login Option 2: Cloud Directories: Google Apps for Education and Microsoft Office365
This option allows your users to log in to Schoology using their Google Apps for Education or Microsoft Office365 credentials.
Google Apps for Education
- When users navigate to your custom domain, they will be redirected to a Google login page. If the user’s credentials are accepted by Google’s login system, they will be redirected and logged into their Schoology account.
Navigate to your Integrations tab under System Settings. In the Authentication tab, select Cloud/On-Premise Directory.
- You can match Schoology users to Google accounts with Usernames, Email Addresses, or Unique IDs. One of these fields must be present in the LDAP database.
- Once you have populated user data in Schoology saved the Google settings, click Save, and then click the Custom Domain tab.
- Set the log-in screen for Google as your Landing Page in Schoology.
Microsoft Office 365
- When users navigate to your custom domain, they will be redirected to an Office 365 login page. If the user’s credentials are accepted by the Office365 login system, they will be redirected and logged into their Schoology account.
Navigate to your Integrations tab under System Settings. In the Authentication tab, select Cloud/On-Premise Directory.
- You can match Schoology users to Office 365 accounts with Usernames, Email Addresses, or Unique IDs. One of these fields must be present in the LDAP database.
- Once you have populated user data in Schoology and Office 365, click Save and select the Custom Domain tab
- Set the Landing Page to the Office 365 log-in screen URL.
Login Option 3: Schoology Remote Authentication (LDAP)
This option allows your users to log in to Schoology from an outside area (e.g., your web portal or third-party portal solution).
When users navigate to a custom Remote Authentication URL that’s been set up and hosted by your organization, they will be prompted to enter their LDAP credentials. If the user’s credentials are accepted by the remote script, they will be redirected and logged into their Schoology account.
Navigate to your Integration > Authentication tab and select Remote Authentication.
- You can match Schoology users to LDAP accounts with Usernames, Email Addresses, or Unique IDs. One of these fields must be present in the LDAP database.
- You must set up a custom script that will run on your Remote Authentication URL which may require developer resources from your technology team
- Once you have populated user data in Schoology and LDAP, setup your custom script and saved the settings in the Remote Auth tab, click Save, and click Custom Domain
- Set the Landing Page to the log-in screen for your directory (such as your portal log-in page)
Additional Information and Resources
We recommend performing the following tasks for optimal performance:
- Review the System Requirements.
- Run a speed test during school or workday.
- Add *.schoology.com to your network's Allowed list.
- Check your firewall settings for blocks against common URLs.
- Additionally, if your school has firewall blocks against Google Ad Services, it will cause Schoology to be very slow. This is because Schoology has Google Ad tags incorporated into our site so that you, as a current Schoology user, do not see Schoology advertisements elsewhere on the internet. These tags do not track any personally identifiable information or any other sensitive data. Remove any blocks against Google Ads Services for optimal performance.
- Ensure outgoing traffic rules for ports 80, 443, 8080, 8443, and 1935:
- Ports 80 and 443 are used for standard Schoology web traffic.
- Ports 8080 and 8443 are used to load SCORM content from Schoology.
- Port 1935 is used for recording audio files.
- If your SIS requires you to explicitly allow a Schoology-specific IP address as part of your firewall rule to integrate your on-premise SIS with Schoology, please add the following IP addresses to the rule.
Schoology IP Addresses
Allowed List Requirements for Assessments
If you are using Course Assessments or the Assessment Management Platform (AMP), these addresses must be added to your network's Allowed list in order to view images and audio/video files uploaded to questions:
Email Authentication Best Practices
Schoology sends emails securely using authentication protocols SPF, DKIM, and DMARC. These technologies allow your email server to validate the emails we are sending with confidence. They are the same technologies that allow your server to filter out emails coming from a hacker pretending to be Schoology.
Most email servers already support these, but it is always best to verify this with your email service provider. Some commonly used providers have been referenced below. If you do not see yours listed, check with your service provider.
Help prevent email spoofing with SPF records
Enhance security for outgoing email (DKIM)
Enhance security for forged spam (DMARC)
Microsoft Office 365
Set up SPF in Office 365 to help prevent spoofing
Use DKIM to validate outbound email sent from your custom domain in Office 365
Use DMARC to validate email in Office 365
Create an SPF policy
Create a DKIM TXT record
Create a DMARC policy
Sender Policy Framework (SPF) Configuration
DKIM - DomainKeys Identified Mail
During implementation, your Schoology representative will train and support you in navigating and using the System Administration tools. This includes setting up roles, permissions, privacy, and ongoing support protocol. Admin training is included as part of every Schoology Enterprise implementation.
If additional training sessions have been purchased, a Schoology Professional Development Specialist will conduct "Train the Trainer" sessions at your school to support you in training a small group of Schoology power users and project leaders. This group will be given opportunities to review key Schoology features in-depth, discuss best practices, and utilize support and training materials.
Schoology offers several support options for your organization’s support staff and instructors.
- The PowerSchool Support Center is available to your users to access guides, ask questions, and get updates.
- The Help Center offers step-by-step instructions and video tutorials for system administrators, instructors, parents, and students.
- Community Support is helpful for finding answers to frequently asked questions, posting new ideas, and suggesting feature requests. As part of your support management practices, you may choose to recommend this area of support for instructors and staff at your school.
- Click Latest News to visit the Schoology Blog for helpful tips and tricks from our team and community.
- Dedicated Support Contacts: see below
As an Enterprise client, you have access to dedicated support. You may choose up to three (3) dedicated Support Contacts from your school/district, whose role it is to relay any questions, concerns, or ideas to the Schoology Support Team. This helps identify common questions among instructors and streamlines their resolution with our support staff.