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Express Edit

Quickly check out published content to a work area for editing.

If there is a published collection or module that you would like to edit from your Personal Workspace or a shared Workgroup, you can now quickly check out a copy directly from the content page itself. At the top of each page of published content, there is now a Reuse / Edit dropdown link:

Reuse/Edit dropdown menu.

Reuse or edit

To check out an editable copy of a collection or module, select its "Reuse or edit" link. You will be prompted to log in if you have not already done so. Then,

  • If you do NOT have permission to edit the content, you will be prompted either to:
    • Derive a copy of the content. Deriving a copy allows you to adapt this content and then publish your new adapted version. More about derived copies.
    • Or check it out anyway. You might choose to check out the content, even though don't have permission to publish changes. You may ask to be a co-author later, derive a copy later, or just want to see how the content is constructed.
    Dialog box prompts you to derive a copy or check it out anyway.
  • If you have permission to edit the content, you will be prompted to select a work area to edit the content.

Selecting a work area

All modules and collections must be created in, or checked out in, a Personal Workspace or a Shared Workgroup in order to be edited and (re)published. Your Personal Workspace is completely private. A Shared Workgroup allows you to collaborate on the content with anyone invited to be a part of the Workgroup.

Dialog box to choose a Work Area to check out the content to.
Note: The Reuse / Edit feature on all content pages allows you to do this quickly for a single piece of content. If you wish to check out multiple items into a work area at the same time (i.e., do a batch checkout), you may find it more convenient to search for the content, select the checkbox next to each desired match, and then select the work area in which to add the content:
Add content to a Work Area from the search returns.

If you already have an edited copy of the collection or module checked out in your work area, and you accidentally try to add it again, the checkout will fail and the older existing copy will remain.

Choose whether to edit now

If you leave the field reading "Edit the content now" checked, you will automatically be redirected to the checked out copy of the content in the work area you selected. If you uncheck that field, the content will be checked out to that work area, and you will not be redirected anywhere, but instead remain at the page of the published content.

More about derived copies

Deriving a copy of a module or collection allows you to create a derivative work that is based on any published content. A derivative work starts with a copy of existing content, to which you make changes and then publish as your own, with proper attribution to the original authors.

Note: Any derivative work you create is based on a snapshot of the original at the time you created the work. If at a later time the original content is updated, your copy will not reflect those updates.

Derivative works are permitted under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which applies to all content in the repository. When you publish a derived copy, an attribution statement is automatically added to the new content that identifies the original work and its authors, which is legally required by the Creative Commons Attribution License.

Some of the uses for deriving copies:

  • Adaptations of others' work. You may wish to create a module or collection that is similar to an existing one, but with some changes. For example, you may find an existing module with excellent explanations that uses an example that won't make sense for your students. You can create a derived copy with a new example. Or perhaps you want to you a module in your collection, but the module contains errors. You contact the original author and suggest corrections. The original author does not respond to your suggestions, so you create a derived copy of the module, insert your changes, and publish the new module.
  • Adaptations of your own work. For example, say you are teaching two mathematics courses, but that each course uses a different calculator. You can write modules that show instructions for functions using one of the calculators, and then derive a copy of those modules to show the same functions using the other calculator.
  • Translations. Derived copies provide a mechanism whereby content can be translated from one language into another.

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