If Blackboard and Facebook had a baby, it would probably look a lot like In Your Class, an academic social networking site for CUNY students. In Your Class was started by four CCNY students – Arber Ruci, Ari Xhelo, Fani Maksakuli and Sergey Agroskin – in 2009. After several years of development and multiple versions of the site, In Your Class is now being piloted by four CUNY colleges.
In Your Class is currently in beta, which means that the site is incomplete, and still must be tested for problems. For the Fall 2012 semester, the testers are students at Kingsborough Community College, Lehman College, School of Professional Studies, and City College. Students from these four campuses can log into the site using their CUNY Portal usernames and passwords.
Through their CUNY portal logins, students are automatically connected to the classes they are currently taking. Each class has an individual page where professors and students can interact through a discussion board, messaging, and document sharing. Unlike Blackboard, the professor does not control availability of their class pages, so students can access a page whether their professor is involved or not.
In Your Class also allows its users to go beyond the space of their individual classrooms. Each college has a directory of students and professors, a school wall, and a bulletin board, which contains listings for apartments, internships, textbooks, and the like. Users can also create and join groups for their various activities and interests. Students are not limited to their own campuses – users can switch between different CUNY colleges to view their walls and groups.
At City College, over 3,000 students are currently registered for In Your Class, and the number is growing. The site is sure to expand as well, improving as users provide its creators with feedback and suggestions.