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1.3. Navigating Brightspace

Brightspace Update

The look and feel of D2L’s interface has changed as of May 2018. Daylight is the project name for a visual overhaul of D2L’s Brightspace product suite. Functionality is largely the same, but navigation, widgets, banners, and images may look very different. Daylight is less cluttered and designed to be visually appealing to learners. It is also designed to be mobile friendly and fully accessible.


The Navigation Bar (NavBar) consists of a single row of menu choices that replaces previous menus. Additionally, navigation in D2L is responsive to screen size with the move to Daylight. Full-sized monitors will display the entire menu, but items will collapse into the More menu on the right side of the window when opened in smaller displays. Smartphones and small tablets will convert to a flyout menu from the left side.

Daylight menu showing all major options except those collapsed into the More dropdown menu. Course Admins is shown here in the More menu.

Watch a demonstration of screen scaling from a monitor to a smartphone.

Animated image showing the menu choices from full screen on a desktop monitor down to a small tablet or smartphone. As the screen shrinks, menu choices collapse into the More menu. Very small screens off a flyout menu.

Course Home Page

The course home page has changed the way courses are presented. Courses automatically appear as image tiles in the widget. If a user has more than 12 courses, the user can easily pin courses to the top of the widget or search all courses.

My Courses shown as tiled images for each couse. There is a pin symbol to choose or a View All Courses button that leads to a search box for long lists.

Same Tools--Different Name

Three tools have been renamed. Each was formerly located in a sub-menu of the NavBar.

Old menu choices highlighted--announcements, quizzes and assignments.

Announcements Tool

The News tool is now Announcements.

Announcements tool shown as the former News tool.

Assignments Tool

Assignments tool shown as the former Dropbox tool.

Quizzes Tool

Quizzes tool shown as the former Assessments tool


D2L is constantly making updates to its products, but the move to Daylight is a new visual design. The operation looks different, but the functionality is largely the same as before. We think you will get to speed quickly and appreciate some of the changes.

Optional Video

If you prefer, this is a 2-minute video that mirrors the written content of this tutorial.

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