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Student D2L Tutorials

Thank you for visiting National Louis University's Student Support website for its online campus, D2L Brightspace.  Here, you will find guides for the most commonly asked D2L questions. Learn how to navigate course content, submit an assignment, email your instructor and more. You’ll also find guides to NLU’s other technology tools such as the Panopto video capture platform and Turnitin. If you are new to NLU, we recommend beginning by viewing the guides in the Getting Started Menu below.

Student Orientations for D2L and Online Learning:

The following orientation videos and handouts are designed to not only introduce you to the NLU Online Campus (D2L), but also to help you succeed as an online student. Learn specific tips and strategies to get the most out of your online course. 

  • Required Technical Specifications
    The Required Technical Specifications document provides the minimum technology and computer literacy requirements for NLU students.

  • NLU Online Campus (Desire2Learn) Orientation
    The NLU Online Campus orientation shows you how to log into the system, set up your personal preferences, and navigate your online course content.

  • NLU Online Learning Orientation  
    The NLU Student Online Orientation provides strategies for how to succeed as an online learner. In addition, you will learn about many of the academic and technical resources NLU has available for students.

  • Student D2L Demo Course  (Username: demostudent, Password: demostudent)
    In this NLU Online Campus demonstration course, you will learn how to submit assignments, access course content, and attempt quizzes in a safe online practice environment. Dive in and gain the experience you need to be successful in any of your online or blended classes! Just click the link above to enter the Course and try out the NLU Online Campus. 

Personalize Your D2L Account

D2L Personal Settings includes three areas: your Profile, Notifications and Account Settings. Profile is an area where you can upload an image, and share information about yourself that others can see in the Classlist. Notifications is an area where you can set up alerts concerning course activities. Account Settings is an area you can customize as to how D2L is formatted for your view.


  • Profile

Video: Modify your Brightspace Profile (2:00)

  • Notifications

Video: Modify your Brightspace Notifications (1:43)

  • Account Settings

Video: Modify your Brightspace Account Settings (2:04)

If you need assistance with D2L, you can call the NLU Helpdesk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll free at 1-866-813-1177 or at extension x4357 if you are on campus.

Navigate the Course Home Page and Content

The Course Home Page is where you can access Announcements and Course Updates, Discussions, the Dropbox, Grades and more! Course content is where you go to view course materials, such as the syllabus, lecture notes, readings and more.


  • Navigate Course Content

Video: Course Content Overview (1:45)

  • Store & View Content with the Binder Mobile App

Video: ‌Binder Overview for Learners (2:17)

Link: Download the Binder AppNavigate the Course Homepage

If you need assistance with D2L, you can call the NLU Helpdesk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll free at 1-866-813-1177 or at extension x4357 if you are on campus.

Desire2Learn Tools

You might think of D2L as your digital classroom. Use D2L's tools submit your work, collaborate with your classmates, check your grades and more. The following tutorials on D2L Email, Assignments, Discussions, Quizzes, Groups and Grades will help you complete your work online through the Desire2Learn Learning Management System.


  • Email 

Video: Use D2L Email (5:08)
PDF Guide: Send and Receive Email

  • Assignments (formerly Dropbox)

Video: Submit Assignments and View Feedback (1:38)

If your Assignment folder has Turnitin set up,you can view a Turnitin Similarity Report for an Assignment submission. First, click on Assignments in the menu bar of your course. This takes you to a table listing all available Assignments. In the Assignment Submission Column click the number of your submissions. This will take you to a list of your submissions. Click a Similarity Report Icon to view your score. Need a little help working out what it all means? Check out Turnitin’s Interpreting the Similarity Report guidance page.

  • Discussions 

Video: Participate in Online Discussions (1:34)

  • Quizzes

Video: How to Take a Quiz (2:26)
Video: How to View Quiz Feedback

  • Groups

Video: Enroll in Brightspace Groups (1:33)

  • Grades

Video: How to View Your Grades Online (1:43)
PDF: View Your Grades

  • User/Class Progress

Video: How to View user/class progress (1:43)

If you need assistance with D2L, you can call the NLU Helpdesk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll free at 1-866-813-1177 or at extension x4357 if you are on campus.

Advanced and External Tools

The following three tools are considered to be a little more advanced than other tools in D2L. The materials posted here will help you use these tools to complete your assignments. 

  • Panopto Video Capture Tool

PDF: Student Panopto Reference Guide
Video: Panopto Quickstart for Students (1:47)
‌Link: Panopto Support Website

  • Brightspace Pulse App - Please note that most courses are not yet configured to make use of the Pulse app.

Video: Pulse Overview for Learners (3:00)

  • Brightspace Binder App

Video: Binder Overview for Learners (2:17)
Link: Download the Binder Mobile App: Apple / Android

  • D2L ePortfolio Tool

Video: Brightspace ePortfolio Tool Video Playlist
Video: NLU ePortfolio Tool Tutorial (11:05)
Link: Download the ePortfolio Mobile App: Apple / Android

If you need assistance with D2L, you can call the NLU Helpdesk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll free at 1-866-813-1177 or at extension x4357 if you are on campus.

Assistive Technology and Privacy Guides 

Here are some additional resources the first guide, "Assistive Technology Guide" will help you locate assistive technology resources. The Privacy Guide will assist you in locating the privacy policies, and provide tips for protecting your privacy and personal information. 

Guide to Assistive Technology

This guide provides links and resources for accessibility guides for many different technology resources at NLU, such as D2L, Course Smart, LiveText, and other frequently used online educational tools and media sites. 

PDF Guide: Assistive Technology Resources Guide

Student Privacy

This guide provides students with resources to assist you in safeguarding their privacy and accounts. 

PDF Guide: Student Privacy Guide

If you need assistance with D2L, you can call the NLU Helpdesk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll free at 1-866-813-1177 or at extension x4357 if you are on campus.

Below you will find answers to some of the questions most frequently asked by NLU Students. If you aren’t able to find the answer to your question here, or in the documentation above, please contact the NLU IT Helpdesk

Accessing your course

Q: D2L does not seem to work properly. What can I do?
A: First, run a browser check to determine whether or not your web browser is capable of running D2L. If it is not, consider upgrading your browser, or using another browser. D2L should work well on up-to-date versions of most modern web browser such as Chrome, Firefox, and Safari.

Q: Why can't I see my course? (Future, current, past)
A: It may be that your instructor has not yet opened, or has closed your course. NLU courses open 2 weeks before the 1st day of class. Before then you will not be able to see your course. If you are within 14 days of your courses start date, or currently taking the course and you still cannot see your course please contact the NLU IT Helpdesk

Q: How do I reset my password?
A: Please click the following link, click Reset Password, then follow the on-screen instructions.


Q: I am trying to upload a document to D2L, but it's not working. What am I doing wrong?
A: It could be the name of the file. Make sure it has the appropriate three letter file extension ("filename.PDF" or "filename.DOC", etc.) at the end of it. Also make sure the filename doesn't have characters like slashes ("/") ampersands ("&"), question marks, quotation marks or asterisks. When uploading files to the web, it is best to use only alphanumeric characters, underscores and dashes in the names. Thus, "lorenzo & vanzetti.DOC" and "lorenzo and vanzetti" will not work. "lorenzo_and_vanzetti.DOC" will.


Q: Why can’t I see my classmates’ discussion postings?
A: It may be that your instructor has chosen to use the “Must post first” option which means you will need to make a post before you are able to read and reply to others.

Q: I know I posted my discussion but now I can't find it.
A: Make sure you are not using a setting that lets you see only new posts, or hides your own posts. (This is the most likely explanation.) If your settings should allow you to see your posts, check to see whether you posted to a different discussion topic, or saved a draft rather than posting your thread.


Q: Why do I get an error when I try to send D2L mail to an outside address?
A: D2L is a closed email system. You are not able to send email to an external email address from within D2L. Only an email ending in email addresses will work. If you need to send an email to an external account please use a personal email account, or your student outlook email account which you can access through the “Student Email” tab in the portal.


Q: How can I see feedback on my quiz answers? My instructor said I should look at this but I don't know where to look!
A: Please view this tutorial on viewing quiz feedback

Q. I started a Quiz but I cannot submit it.
A: Save your answers, then close the quiz and contact your instructor. The instructor can submit your quiz attempt for you, or manually grade the quiz.


Q: Why can some of my classmates see the next week's module, dropbox, etc. and I can't?
A: It may be that your instructor is using selective release options to send different content to different students. Ask your instructor about this issue.

Q: How do I make a suggestion?
A: If you have a suggestion for improving your class let your instructor know by completing the IDEA course evaluation survey which can be found here:

Q: I have a Question. Where can I get an answer?
A: If the question is related to your courses content or structure, consider asking your instructor. Many courses have a dedicated discussion topic for questions. For more personal questions you can also email your instructor though the classlist tool. For technical inquiries you can contact the NLU IT Helpdesk.



    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
    Info » | Directions »

    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
    Info » | Directions »