DEIT July Workshops

Important Reminder: Blackboard will be entirely unavailable on July 24 and 25 for a system upgrade.

Register for workshops:

(View in calendar format)

Blackboard SaaS (new features coming July 26)

  • Monday, July 2 | 7 pm | Online
  • Monday, July 23 | 7 pm | Online
  • Saturday, July 28 |10 am | In person – Dooling 40

Flex Class Demo

  • Saturday, July 14 | 10 am |In person – Dooling 40
  • Wednesday, July 18 | 6 pm |In person – Dooling 40

New Student Orientation

  • Thursday, July 5 | 7 pm | Online


  • Wednesday, July 25 | 7 pm | Online

Web Conferencing Tools (Zoom and Bb Collaborate)

  • Wednesday, July 11 | 7 pm | Online

Questions? Contact DEIT at 610-282-1100 x2290 or

R.I.P. Mary Kathryn Surdoval, Mother of Dr. Patricia Riola

It is with deepest regrets that the Mathematics and Computer Science Department announces the passing of Mary Kathryn Surdoval, mother of Dr. Patricia Riola, Director of MSIS Graduate Program.

Mary Kathryn, 89, of Macungie, passed away June 28.  Please keep Pat and her family in your prayers during this difficult time.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 7, 2018 at St. Thomas More Roman Catholic Church, 1040 Flexer Avenue, Allentown, PA.  Family and friends may pay their respects from 9:30 – 10:30 a.m. Saturday in the church narthex.  Interment will follow the Mass at Resurrection Cemetery, Wescosville, PA.

The Heintzelman Funeral Home in Schnecksville is in charge of arrangements.  Online expressions of sympathy may be recorded at

May the Lord welcome Pat’s mother into his loving arms, and send the Spirit of consolation to Pat and her family during the days and weeks ahead. 

Condolences may be sent to Pat via campus mail.


The Philadelphia Inquirer says Twelfth Night is “full of hilarity”

PA Shakespeare Festival Twelfth Night

Wit, music, romance and revelry are the food of love at this comedic feast of lovers and fools. Viola and her twin brother are shipwrecked in the magical land of Illyria, each believing the other drowned. Disguised as a young man, and entering the service of the lovesick Duke Orsino, Viola woos the wistful lady Olivia for her new master and finds herself in a most unusual and hilarious love triangle. Merry deceptions and mistaken identities abound in this lilting comedy until true love finds its way. Ages 7+

Critics are raving for PSF’s production of William Shakespeare’s comedy Twelfth Night…don’t miss your chance to see this comedic feast of lovers and fools! DSU faculty and staff can purchase tickets starting at $27, a discount of more than 50% off.


Annual Testing of Campus Fire Alarm System In Progress

Johnson Controls, the University’s fire alarm system and suppression vendor, is currently on campus conducting the annual testing of all campus fire alarm systems, as required by the National Fire Protection Association. They will remain on campus until all testing has been completed. This includes both the academic/administrative buildings as well as all residence halls. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause you and ask for your patience during the tests. A schedule of inspections is developed on a daily basis based on the scheduled activities in each building.

Questions? Contact the Emergency Services Department at extension 1779 or

Fiscal 2018 Year-End Tasks For All Offices

  • All cash and checks are to be brought to the Treasurer’s Office on Friday, June 29th by 11:30 AM.
  • Any uncashed checks to vendors being held for any reason should be brought to the Treasurer’s Office immediately for proper cancellation and/or possible reissue.
  • An item must be physically received or the service must have been performed on or before June 30th in order for the item to be considered an expenditure in 2018.
  • All invoices, check requisitions and travel requisitions related to the 2018 budget need to be in the Treasurer’s Office by July 13, 2018.
  • June credit card statements need to be submitted to our office by July 13, 2018. The credit card statements will be reviewed for accounting in the proper period.
  • Please email me with any significant expenditure related to the 2018 budget year for which you may not receive an invoice as of July 13, 2018. Include the following in the email: dollar amount of the expenditure, account number to be charged, purchase order or confirmation notice supporting the amount, proof of receipt or tracking documents, description of the expenditure, and transaction date.
  • Any noted invoices and expenditure requisitions that do not meet the guidelines above will automatically be counted against your 2019 budget.

Thank you for your attention to these matters.

If you have any questions, please contact Deanne Fenstermacher at

Instructor Roundtable and Dinner June 13 – Register Now

Last chance to register for the June 13 Instructor Roundtable and Dinner at The event will take place at Trexler Library on the Center Valley campus, with check-in (and drinks) beginning at 5:30. Dinner is at 6, with activities thereafter.

This event is free of charge for DeSales instructors and staff.


  • Buffet dinner, beer/wine/soft drinks
  • Meet DSU President Rev. James J. Greenfield, OSFS
  • Roundtable discussions with peers on a variety of topics
  • Tech demos of the One Button Studio (self-service recording studio) and the new Flex class format
  • Student panel discussion – see DeSales through our students’ eyes
  • Testing using Blackboard – learn the finer points
  • Prizes!

Can’t make it in person? The session with Fr. Greenfield and the Student Panel Discussion will be live streamed at (no registration required).

Questions? Contact DEIT at 610-282-1100 x2290 or

Update: Redesign 2018

Right now several professional web writers are hard at work crafting copy for our new site —approximately 500 pages that do their best to describe all of that which is distinctly DeSales.

We’re working with folks from our many programs, majors and departments to make sure this critical marketing tool has the finest, freshest content possible. If your area hasn’t heard from us yet, you surely will in the next two months!

You can learn about the different stages of the entire redesign process at

Web writing is very different from academic and publications writing. Here’s a quick-start guide to the new DeSales website content strategy:

Writing for the Web: Why is it so Important we get This Right?

  • Well-written content contributes to a positive overall user experience.
  • People read the web differently than print, so we must write differently.
  • On average, users only read an estimated 20% of text on a page.
  • Reading from a screen is generally slower than reading in print—even slower if the content uses complex language.
  • Web users scan to find information they are looking for.
  • Action-oriented users rely on concise, descriptive headings to find information quickly.
  • When users find the content they are looking for, they are ready to be shown their next step.

Web Writing Best Practices
Quality content has a purpose. Clarity also leads to better rankings in search results. The more accurately the content is written, the easier it will be for search engines to make sense of it.

  • Audience-Centered: Content should be relevant and appropriate for the intended audience.
  • Clarity: Content should make sense and not include “fluff” or unnecessary information.
  • Scannability: Page content should be organized so users can quickly scan.
  • Readability: Content should not exceed a 10th grade reading level.
  • Brevity: Content should fit within recommended guidelines for length.
  • Links: Content should be findable and include logical paths to additional content.
  • Calls to Action: Most content should offer a clear next step. If there is not a clear call to action for a page, at a minimum, every page should have a purpose.
  • Accessibility: Content should be accessible for all audiences.
  • SEO: Follow SEO guidelines to ensure content is findable.

Readability & Plain Language
The information on our site should be easy to understand without our audience having to exert too much effort.

  • Use a 10th grade reading level as the gauge for readability – yes, even for a college website!
  • Write in plain, conversational language. Readability is key. Ex: “You’ll learn” vs. “You will learn”
  • Long sentences and advanced vocabulary slow readers down. Plain language communicates information more efficiently.
  • Avoid internal jargon and acronyms that may not be familiar to all audiences. When unavoidable, define unfamiliar terminology.

Follow these commonly accepted length guidelines:

  • Sentence: Should be no more than 15-20 words.
  • Paragraph: Can be as little as 1 sentence, but should be no more than five. Shorter paragraphs are easier to read, usually around 40-70 words.
  • Page: Should contain a word count of 300-700. Ideal maximum length: 500 words.
  • Headings: Should not exceed 8-10 words.

Exceptions: Pages where the user requires informational content. This might be organized in tabs or expandable content components.


HelpDesk phone system outages Saturday night, 6/8

Due to required maintenance of the HelpDesk system, we are expecting 2 phone outages on Saturday night:
  • 10pm on 6/8 for approximately 30 min
  • 2am on 6/9  for approximately 60 min
HelpDesk voicemail will be actively monitored and available during the outages. Calls will be returned once phone services have been restored.
HelpDesk LiveChat will remain available.