Automatically customize course content using replace strings

A replacement string allows instructors to customize course content and communications in Brightspace Learning Environment by incorporating the intended learner's personalized information, such as their name, automatically. This feature can help instructors build better relationships with learners, increase engagement levels, and improve the overall learning experience.

Replace strings, sometimes referred to as display configuration variables, are configuration variable names enclosed in curly braces {} that are automatically replaced by the corresponding configuration variable values. For example, if you enter the text {OrgUnitID} into a document, when you view the document you will see the Organization Unit ID (ou #) of the course.

Replace strings are used in all tools that use HTML Editor. However, evaluation rules for the replace strings vary with the tool as follows:

  • For the Content tool, curly braces are stripped even if the string is not a valid configuration variable or a replace string that does not apply to the Content tool. Then, replace strings are evaluated only once when first entered. Thereafter, there is no record of a replacement string having been entered. For example, if you enter {OrgUnitID} into a Content topic in course 'A' and later copy that topic into course 'B', the ou # of course 'A' course will display in the topic in course 'B'.

For all other tools, any curly braces are NOT stripped if the string is not a valid configuration variable or a replace string that does not apply to the tool. Then the replace string is evaluated each time the document containing the replace string is viewed. For example, if you enter {OrgUnitID} into a Discussion topic in course 'A' and later copy that topic into course 'B', the ou # of course 'B' will display in the post in course 'B'.

  • Not all replace strings apply to all tools as described below.

Replace strings are particularly useful within the following:

  • Course Homepage Widgets
  • Custom Navigation Bar Links
  • Navigation Bars
  • Mail Templates
  • Grades when adding bulk feedback