myWPI is WPI's rebranded version of the [Blackboard] system, allowing courses to post documents, assignments, and grades online in a secure manner. myWPI also enables discussion boards in which students and course staff can leave comments and questions for each other. While myWPI has been put to good and often creative uses by many professors, some students consider it to be buggy, overcomplicated and unnecessary. Additionally, professors and TAs often stumble upon bugs and misfeatures in the software that limits its utility somewhat, and sometimes resort to combining myWPI with a separate, external Web site, further complicating matters for the students (who must then look in both places to get the full picture of what is going on).
- Allows professors to host course documents, assignments, and links to other Web pages.
- Allows professors to separate students into groups and send communications to each group or the class as a whole.
- Allows professors to set up discussion boards for the class and for groups within the class, including the potential for anonymous posts.
- Allows professors to enter grades, which the students can then check in real time.
- Allows students to store files and submit them to the professor via the use of a "digital drop box".
Bugs and Misfeatures
- The digital drop box feature presents students with two buttons when they upload a file: Save and Submit. If the student clicks Save instead of Submit, the professor will never receive the file (and has no way to retrieve it). This is by far the most commonly encountered problem with myWPI, so much so that most professors explicitly warn students about it.
- The grades display does not drop zeroes, even from students who have long since dropped the course; therefore, the class averages for assignments are usually much lower than the actual average.
- Similarly, the grades display is not correctly weighted, even when the interface suggests that it is.
- If two course staff members attempt to edit grades of students at the same time, the later committed edit will overwrite all the records in the earlier one, even if the two staff members were assigning grades to totally different students.
- Apple users often have to login twice. The first time, they are redirected back to the login page with no error message.
- Microsoft Office catches myWPI has a misspelled word and suggests myopic, myopia, and myopias as potential correct spellings.