1 Technology at CSU-Pueblo

Your instructor may ask you to utilize different types of software and online platforms in order to complete the coursework. In this resource section, you can find basic information on how to utilize this software effectively throughout the course. Though this is not an exhaustive section, it may act as a starting place to troubleshoot any technological issues you may have. If you are having technological issues that your instructor cannot answer, please refer to the IT Help Desk, as they are here to help you. They can be found at LARC 129 Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm. You can also reach them during these times by telephone at 719-549-2002. Their email is HelpDesk@csupueblo.edu.


Starfish is CSU-Pueblo’s Student Early Alert and Tracking system. You can use Starfish to contact your Professors and Advisors, to ask questions, and to schedule any appointments. Your Professors can also contact you through Starfish to let you, your advisor, and your coaches know if you are having trouble in class. You may get alerts from Starfish about your performance if you have been missing classes or assignments or some other issue is happening in one of your courses. If this happens, your advisor should contact you and you should contact your instructor to see what you can do to improve your academic performance. Instructors can also give you “kudos” through this software. That means that they can indicate if you are doing a wonderful job.

You can access Starfish through your PAWS Account. If you do not know how to access PAWS, or if your password is not working, please contact the IT Help Desk for assistance.

To Make an Appointment Using Starfish:

  • Log into PAWS and select Starfish under Your Services.
  • At the top of the screen, click the dark blue title STARFISH.
  • Click on your name in the upper right hand corner.
  • Verify you are utilizing (GMT-07:00 Mountain Time). You will see this in the middle of the page.
  • Go to My Success Network.
  • Click on your Professor’s name.
  • Click on Schedule an Appointment. You may make an appointment from here.
  • The time slots available will be shown to you. Click “Sign Up” to schedule an appointment.


Blackboard is an online learning environment. You will have a blackboard site for your composition course, though how much you use it will be up to your individual instructor. On blackboard you may be able to find important documents like your syllabus, the departmental policies and procedures, and any additional policies that your instructor may put into place for their classroom. You may also be able to find your assignment sheets, dropboxes for homework, and other documents or workplaces that your instructor may create. Below you will find some basic instructions for using Blackboard, such as how to login, check your grades, and view instructor comments on work submitted through the online platform.

Logging into Blackboard:

  • Go to CSU-Pueblo’s website and click on Current Students.
  • Select Blackboard in the dark grey bar (third option).
  • To log into blackboard, you will use the same username and password as you do for your CSU-P email address. This should be your firstandsecondinitial.lastname, not your PID.
  • Click “Login.”

Checking Your Grades:

Please note that not all instructors will post grades on blackboard. If your instructor does post grades on blackboard, this is how you will check your grades.

  • To check your grades, click on the name of your composition course.
  • Select “Grade Center” in the left side menu. This will show you all grades that have been posted.

Reading Instructor Comments:

If your instructor asks you to submit work through a dropbox on Blackboard, there’s a chance that they will comment on that work on Blackboard. If your instructor does comment on papers submitted through the dropbox on blackboard, this is how you can locate and view these comments.

  • Click on the name of your composition course from your course list.
  • Select “Grade Center” in the left side menu. This will show you all grades that have been posted.
  • Click on the assignment that you are wanting to view. It should be dark blue if comments are available.

You should also be able to view instructor and peer comments on your blogs. This is very simple to do. Just go to your blog and click on the bottom of the entry where it says “Comments.” If there are any comments on your blog post, they will be there!

Posting a Blog or Journal Entry:

Your instructor may ask you to post either blogs or journal entries on blackboard. These are two different types of assignments, but they are posted in the same way. A blog post is a post that the rest of your class can see and comment on, while a journal can only be viewed by you and  your instructor. It is your responsibility to post all of your assignments in the correct place, as indicated by your instructor. If you post them somewhere else, do not expect to get credit for them. It is very likely that your instructor will not go hunting through blackboard to locate each of your individual posts, so if you are unsure of where you should post a document, please contact your instructor for more information.

  • First you must locate the appropriate blog or journal to post in. To do so, either verify with your instructor which blog or journal to post in, or check your assignment sheet.
  • Click on the title of this blog or journal.
  • Click on Create Blog Entry or Create Journal Entry.
  • Title your blog or journal entry and type the necessary content.
  • Click Post Entry at the bottom of the screen.

Uploading a Document to the Dropbox:

You may have to upload documents to a dropbox on blackboard in order to turn them in to be graded. To do so, complete the following steps:

  • Click on the dropbox.
  • In the middle of the screen, you will see a button that says “Browse My Computer.” Click this button.
  • Select the file you wish to upload from your computer. A word document, or .doc(x), works best.
  • Click the open button.
  • Click the blue Submit button on the right hand of the screen.

MLA Format: Assignment Submission

All homework and Writing Projects, unless otherwise specified, must use MLA format. Here’s how to set up a word file in MLA format:
  1. The margins should all be one inch.
  2. The font should be twelve point.
  3. The spacing should be double-spaced.
  4. Go to the “Paragraph” tab and set the “Spacing Before” and “Spacing After” to “0” as Word often adds additional spacing after you press the “enter” key which isn’t required.
  5. Insert a header with your last name and page number in the top right corner of your page. When you insert the page number, type in your last name to the left of the page number. Be sure your header is the same font type as your text.
  6. The heading should be four lines: Your name, the instructor’s name, the course, and the date.

Your instructor will probably provide you a sample paper for guidance as well. Do yourself and your instructor a favor and follow the guidelines provided.



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Writing and Rhetoric by Heather Hopkins Bowers; Anthony Ruggiero; and Jason Saphara is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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