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Finding Content

Our advanced search tool allows users to sort search returns by a number of metrics, expand or collapse details in the search results, and even view usage statistics for modules and collections. The search interface can be accessed in a number of different ways.

You can search the content repository for a specific module or a collection using the Search button and text box in the upper right corner of the web pages. Type in a name, keyword, collection title, module title, text string, or object ID in the Search text box and click Search. The next page will display a list of all modules and collections that match your entry. You can sort and filter these results by various criteria. To view a module or collection, click its title.


Figure 1: Search bar.

Or you can use the search bar on the Browse interface under the Content tab. This page allows you to search for modules or collections by title, author name, or subject area.


Figure 2: Search bar and interface.


Select the Content tab (above the You are here Breadcrumb bar) to display the browsing interface screen. You can use the Browse feature to display a listing of all content by subject, title, author name, keyword, popularity, language or revision date.

Browsing interface.

Figure 3: Browsing interface.

  1. Browse by selecting the appropriate item under the Browse All Content heading on the tab. (The last filter criterion, "All Collections", will display a listing of only collections instead of searching individual modules.)
  2. Refine your results. The refinement differs depending on what you chose to browse by in Step 1.
  3. View a module or collection by clicking on its title.

Browsing interface.

Figure 4: Browsing interface and refinement.

Sorting Criteria

Results are returned in the detail view shown below. Besides in search or browse returns, you might see a detail view of content like this through lens pages, author profiles, and elsewhere. The search interface allows you to choose multiple views of the content listings, sort them by various criteria, and even quickly checkout or derive a copy of content to one of your Work Areas.

A typical detail view is shown below. In this view, viewers have access not only to the names and authors of modules and collections matching their search criteria, but they can also examine a selection of the metadata associated with each item, such as the it's keywords and revision history which they can sort by.

Search results with sort options.

Figure 5: Detailed search returns.

Sort by

You can choose a new sorting criteria from the Sort by dropdown at the top of the listing. You can sort by:

  • Relevance - to what you searched by
  • Popularity - based on the number of times the content has been visited in ratio to the total number of page hits of all content.
  • Language - as specified by the author.
  • Revision date - to sort the most recently updated content to the top of the list.
  • Title - to list the content alphabetically
  • Type - to group collections together at the top, and modules together at the bottom.

Search results with sort options.

Figure 6: Search returns with "Sort by" list shown.


On the left side above the content listing, you should see View: Detail | Compact | Statistics. Clicking on one of these changes the view. Often, the default view is "Detail". To hide this more detailed information, users can click on the "Compact" link under the "View" heading in the search return box, which only shows the title and author on the left, and your current sorting criterion on the right.

Finally, module and collection usage statistics can be found by clicking on the Statistics link. The statistics view gives you a bit more information behind the "Popularity" ranking. It includes the total number of times the content has been viewed, the average number of views/day, how high the content is ranked (a rank of "1" means that content is the most-viewed content in the repository), and the rank percentile (a percentile of 98.72% means that 98.72% of the content in the repository is ranked lower than the this content). These statistics can either cover the module or collection's entire history (the "All Time" link under the "Statistics" heading) or the most recent week of activity (the "Recent" option)

Additionally, these statistics can be downloaded as a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet to a user's local machine using the Download Spreadsheet link found under the "Statistics" heading.

Search results with sort options.

Figure 7: "Statistics" views of search returns.

Discovering Content

If you are looking for quality content on a certain subject, or tailored for a certain audience, there are other ways to find what you are looking for.

Through content

You can use the Related Material portlet to find content similar to the content you are viewing. Included in the portlet are:

  • "Similar content": a list of similar content generated by the system. Click a title to display that content. Browsing the content listed here is a great way to find similar learning materials on a related subject.
  • "Collections using this material": lists any other collections that contain the current module. (This header only appears if you are viewing a module which is included in at least one collection.) You can click on the names of the listed collections to be taken to the start page of that collection.

Related Material portlet.

Figure 8: 'Related Material' portlet.

Through lenses

If the content you are viewing is included in any public lenses, you can use the "Lenses" portlet to find lenses which include this content. Those lenses are likely to have similar content of high quality. You can always browse our list of public Lenses to find lenses related to the subject you are searching.

Hover over the name of a lens to see more information about it, including who created it, and the comment (if any) they wrote in their lens about the content. Clicking on the name of a lens will take you to the lens page with the full list of content that has been included in the lens.

Lenses portlet.

Figure 2: Expand tags in the "Lenses" portlet.

Clicking on the tag icon next to any of the lens names in the Lenses portlet will expand the portlet to show all the tags the lens creator has associated with this piece of content.

Click one of these tags to filter the content selected by the lens to show only content within that lens associated with that tag.

Through tags

If the content you are viewing is included in any public lenses, then you will also see a Tags portlet on the left side of the page. This portlet lists a combination of all of the tags associated with this content from all the lenses it is included in. Click on a tag to search the repository for other content included in lenses that is associated with this tag.

Tags portlet.

Figure 9: Tags portlet.

Through member profiles

If you enjoyed one module or collection, you might enjoy more content by that author. Click the author's name to go to the author's profile, where you will find links to all of their modules, collections, and lenses, as well as links to the profiles of any coauthors whom they authored content with.

View of author profile.

Figure 10: Author profile, with link to author's statistics.

In this figure, a link (view statistics) is circled in red. Click this to go directly to the popularity statistics of this author's content. Rank them by popularity to find the content by this author most visited.

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