Vision upgrade – 25th June 2016

Blackboard, the software which underpins our VISION Virtual Learning Environment, will be upgraded on Saturday 25th June between 1 am and 2 pm BST (you can check your local time at

Vision will be unavailable during this time.

Times at our campuses are

Campus Start Time End Time
UK 01:00 BST 14:00 BST
Dubai 04:00 GST 17:00 GST
Malaysia 08:00 MYT 21:00 MYT


Benefits of the upgrade will include: –

  • Accessibility updates
  • Bug fixes
  • Improved User Interface
  • Security updates

If you have any queries please contact

Vision Service Interruption – 5th March 01:00 – 05:00 GMT

Blackboard, our Managed Hosting Company,  have scheduled Datacenter Maintenance on Saturday 5th March 2016, 01:00 to 05:00 GMT.

Local time for our campuses are:

Campus Date Start Time End Time
UK Sat 5 March 01:00 GMT 05:00 GMT
Dubai Sat 5 March 05:00 GST 09:00 GST
Malaysia Sat 5 March 09:00 MYT 13:00 MYT


You may experience service interruption during this time and the service will be down at some point.

You can check your local time here.

Ignore at your peril – long document formatting essentials!

A couple of really useful videos to help you format your dissertation/thesis/report/essay.  They’re a bit longer than I normally suggest (which is probably why I’ve missed them before…) but get yourself a cuppa and take time to watch them.  They’ll save you loads of time in the long run!

The first one shows you how to format headings using Styles, add multi-level numbering and create a TOC.


This next one shows you how to add captions to figures and create a list of figures automatically.


Word for Long Documents in Vision

The Word for Long Documents workshop in Vision has been updated with these links and other new content.

If you’re not an expert Word document formatter – take a look!

In Vision, go to the Power Hour organisation, and choose Word: Word for long documents from the left hand menu.

Vision down for scheduled maintenance – Friday 16th October

Blackboard will be carrying out scheduled maintenance on Friday 16th October 2015.

Time: 7:00 pm – 11: 00 pm (GMT)

There will be no access to Vision during this time.

Cinema voucher winners drawn…

Graeme picks the winners…2015winners

We had a fantastic response to the Vision quiz for new Edinburgh campus students – with 770 attempts at the quiz from 593 students. There were 147 all correct entries. Well done to everyone that took part.

We’ll announce the winners once we’ve contacted them.

We hope you enjoyed taking part – and also that it helped you find out more about what IS can do to support you during your course.

Free download – Vision (VLE) App – Blackboard mobile

bb1Use Blackboard Mobile to access your courses from your mobile devices.

It’s free, easy to use – and gives you the best viewing experience on a range of devices.

You’ll find all the information you  need to download the app and get started at the Blackboard Mobile Resource Center.


Three £20 cinema vouchers up for grabs…

…in our competition for Edinburgh campus new students.

Complete the quiz in Skills for Success – get all the answers correct and you will be automatically entered into our prize draw.

Three lucky winners – drawn from all correct entries received by the 30th September – will receive a £20 cinema voucher.

  • Once you are fully enrolled you can log into Vision, the university Virtual Learning Environment. For a quick overview of the system see the Student Guide to Vision.

All new students are automatically enrolled on Skills for Success.

To enter the competition

  1. Log into Vision using your HWU UserID and password
  2. Click on Skills for Success
  3. Choose New students (Edinburgh campus) from the top of the menu on the left
  4. Complete the Getting to know Information Services quiz


You can try the quiz as often as you like – your highest score will count.

The competition closes on the 30th September 2015.

Good luck!

Skills for Success – new content released

Just in time to help you with your exam preparations – new content has been released in Skills for Success in Vision – Revision & Exam Success.

studyskillsIf you haven’t already visited Skills for Success it’s easy to self-enrol.

To self-enrol on Skills for Success – watch a screen cast at or follow the steps 1 – 5 below.

  1. Log in to Vision
  2. Select the Organisations tab
  3. Search for Skills for Success
  4. Click the drop-down arrow under the Organisation ID, next to VIIASS
  5. Click Enrol, then click Submit, and finally click OK

Skills for Success will be available in the My Organisations module.

As exam time approches you might find the following Power Hour sessions useful

  • The Exam Survival Guide
  • How to Manage Exam Stress

Student counselling are also offering drop-in sessions to where you can learn some techniques and get some tips to help you through the exam period.

See for details

Skills for Success

Skills for Success has been written to support undergraduate students at Heriot-Watt University and to help you develop key skills in information, IT and effective study.

The course contains 3 sections:


Skills for Success is available to all staff and students at Heriot-Watt University. It is not programme specific – and students on all campuses, studying full time, part time or by distance learning may find the content useful.

The material can help you:

  • Find high quality academic sources for your assignments – and use them appropriately in your coursework and assignments.
  • Use desktop software to prepare and present your work.
  • Develop good study and organisation skills.

You don’t need to work though the material from beginning to end – you can dip in and out as you wish and visit and revisit as often as you like.

We hope you find it useful – please feel free to provide feedback using the Feedback link, or by adding a comment to the map (in Where are you?)

To access Skills for Success you must self-enrol:

You can watch a screen cast at or follow the steps 1 – 5 below.

  1. Log in to Vision
  2. Select the Organisations tabsfs
  3. Search for Skills for Success
  4. Click the drop-down arrow under the Organisation ID,
    next to VIIASS
  5. Click Enrol, then click Submit, and finally click OK

Skills for Success will be available in the My Organisations module.



Information – Anywhere, Anytime!

HWU’s online services are readily available from your smart phone or mobile device.

Our website  is mobile-reponsive, so use your mobile’s browser to bookmark , or other pages that you often use.

Setting up Student and Staff Email, Contacts and Calendar will let you keep you in touch, wherever you are.

To work in the VISION Virtual Learning Environment or access your Library Services, whenever you need to, download the free Blackboard Mobile Learn or LibAnywhere apps from the i-Tunes App or Google Play Stores.

  • Recent Posts

  • Follow HWU_IS on Twitter

  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Subscribe

  • Tags

    #12ReadsofXmas books Click and Collect discovery eBooks Edinburgh campus Feedback hardware helpdesk IDcards IT library Library building opening hours Phishing Printing Resources searching Security Software studyspace Study space Update VISION wifi
%d bloggers like this: