Posted August 17th, 2020 at 10:24 am.

What is Perusall?

Perusall is a website that allows for collaborative annotation of readings. You and your students can highlight passages, bookmark it, ask and answer questions, post comments, and upvote them. You can upload your own readings to Perusall or choose a textbook (which your students might have to pay for). Perusall is designed to motivate students primarily through the content of the readings and their social interactions. Perusall incentives students to participate by automatically giving students an engagement score. It gives students feedback on the depth and breadth of annotation and it will automatically nudge students to master the subject.

We have integrated it with Moodle so you can set up your entire course with a few clicks. Perusall is free for you and for your students. Every BMC community member with Moodle access has a Perusall account. Both you and your students can access Perusall via Perusall Activity on Moodle.

Creating a Perusall Activity

Note: You must create an activity before setting up your Perusall course

A Perusall Activity is how you and your students will be able to sign in to your Perusall course. You can link to your course homepage or to a specific assignment in Perusall.

  1. Select Perusall from the Add an activity or resource menu on the Moodle course page in the topic box where you wish the Readings for that week to appear.
  2. Choose a unique Activity Name (eg. Week X Readings, All readings)
  3. Save and return to course
  4. If you want to create an activity per class day, repeat the process above, and use the same Activity Name as your Assignment Name in Perusall.

Setting Up Perusall

  1. Click your Perusall activity in Moodle (if you don’t have one, see the instructions above)
  2. Another window will open and you will be guided through the Perusall setup process
  3. In Perusall, make changes to your course:

Screenshot of Perusall home screen

    • You can customize the text on the Get Started tab
    • Manage your roster and explore student performance in the Students tab. You can see which students enrolled in the Perusall course (clicked the Perusall Activity you set up in Moodle).
    • Add your readings to the Library tab. You can upload documents or choose a textbook (which your students might have to pay to access).
    • Set up your reading assignments in the Assignments tab. After you are done uploading your readings, you can assign page ranges, multiple readings, deadlines, and add instructions for your students. Once students begin work, this tab will show real-time analytics about your class’ engagement in the assignments.

Visit the Perusall Help Page for Instructors for more features.

What do I tell my students?

Your students will interact with the Perusall activity just like any other in Moodle. Once they click on the provided Perusall Activity, they will be taken to your Perusall course page.

  1. Click Assignments to view assigned readings
    a. Highlight, comment, compile a list of excerpts, ask and answer questions

Your students can find more features and instructions on how to use Perusall by visiting the Perusall Help Page for Students

Filed under: General Assistance by Nathalia Santos

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