MyHLS Course Web Sites

MyHLS is a web-based course management system that allows faculty to create course websites through a template driven interface. Each course site is populated with enrollments based on Registrar data. A MyHLS page provides each student, faculty and staff member a personalized page that displays information that pertains directly to them including a list of course sites with which they are affiliated. iCommons tutorials can be found at on the iCommons Help Page.

Getting Started

Using Tools


Getting Started

Logging into MyHLS

To log in to MyHLS, you will need your HUID and PIN. If you don't have a pin already, you can get one at:

With your HUID and PIN you can access your course websites at:


If you cannot login:

  • Make sure you have a HUID and PIN. If not, you can get one at:
  • If you already have a HUID and PIN, make sure it works for other PIN applications. Harvard Students should make sure to enter only the first 8 digits of their HUID and PIN.
  • Double check that you have caps lock turned off.
  • Clear your browser's cache and try again. Refer to your browser's help application for assistance.

If you are a cross-registered student or an auditor who uses an XID in place of an HUID, follow these steps:

  • Make sure you are using the e-mail address provided when you obtained your account as the XID login.
  • Make sure you have changed the Login Type dropdown menu from "Harvard University ID" number to "XID Login."
  • You should have received an e-mail that allowed you to set up your own password via a secure website at the time you set up your HLS account and obtained your "XID". If you forgot your password and you had your XID originally created via the HLS Student Help Desk, please contact the Student Help Desk to have it reset. Please note, if you originally had your XID created at another Harvard school, please contact that school's help desk or "XID help" at
  • Additional Information for XID holders: After you activate your XID account, you may go to the XID website at at any time in order to manage your XID account profile and/or change your XID password. If you have any problems activating your account or logging in using your new XID after activating your account, please send an email to XID Help at:


Should you have problems accessing your site, read the following flow from left to right to determine who might be able to help you. If your situation is not represented below, contact the HLS Student Help Desk.

HLS StudentOfficially registered in a course, whose course does not appear in your MY Courses list:Verify with your instructor that they are augmenting the course with a MyHLS course website, then contact the HLS Registrar.
Officially registered in a course, who can't log in:Contact the Student Help Desk
Auditing, but not officially registered in a course, who needs access to MyHLS and course website:Obtain a note of permission from the faculty member or their assistant and then visit the Student Help Desk in Hauser Hall 030 to gain access to the course website:
Cross-registered Student,
Officially registered in a course, who can't log in:Contact the Student Help Desk.
Not officially registered yet, who can't log in:Contact the HLS Registrar's office to register.
Non-HLS Student,Auditing and not officially registered in a course, who needs access to MyHLS and course website:Obtain a note of permission from the faculty member or their assistant and visit the Student Help Desk with a picture ID.

If all of the above does not work, contact the Student Help Desk. Be sure to include your full name, HUID or XID, the course title, OS and browser being used and the complete text of any error messages that came up.

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Using Tools

The Discussion Tool

The Discussion Tool facilitates an asynchronous discussion in which students can exchange ideas and course materials, and ask questions of each other and the teaching staff. Course instructors have customized their use of the Discussions Tool to meet instructional goals, therefore discussion environments may differ for each course or not appear at all.

If your course website is using a Discussion Board, please see the online documentation for instructions on how to use the tool.

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The Sign-Up List Tool

If you see Sign-Up List in your course website menu, your instructors have posted an online calendar through which you may coordinate meeting times with your teaching staff.

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The Profiles Tool

If your course instructor has activated the Profiles Tool in your course website, you can build a biography to share with other enrolled students and course teaching staff. Likewise, you may also view other student profiles. Please note: Once you create a profile, it appears in all of your enrolled courses in which the Profiles Tool is active. You may edit your profile from any course website that has activated the Profiles Tool. Please see the online documentation for instructions on how to use the tool.

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The Digital Dropbox Tool

A drop box folder allows course enrollees to upload files to the course website. Dropboxes will only display your files. Not every course website will have a drop box folder; course teaching staff decide whether to add a drop box to the course site.

See the online documentation for instructions on how to use the tool.

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The Student Emailer Tool

Using the Student Emailer Tool, you can e-mail students and teaching staff from the course website. This tool is only available after enrollment data gets published to the course website and if your course instructor elects to add it to the course website.

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Finding Other Course Sites

You can find other available course sites by logging into MyHLS, clicking on the "Courses" tab, locating the the Search For a Course box on the right-side of the page, and then clicking on the MyHLS Courses Search page link. You can search for courses by Course ID, Course Title, or Instructor.

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Unable to See One or More of my Courses Listed on my MyHLS Page

You may not see all the courses you are registered for on your MyHLS page. The MyHLS page lists only courses for which a faculty member has elected to use MyHLS to augment a regular course. In other words, you will not see a link to a course site on your MyHLS page if the MyHLS website for that course does not exist, even if you are enrolled for that class.

  • Check with your faculty member or her assistant if you are not sure your class utilizes a MyHLS website.
  • Verify your official course enrollment information by checking Helios.
  • If you have verified with the faculty member instructing the class that your course should have an available MyHLS website and you still do not see it when you log into MyHLS, send an e-mail to the Student Help Desk with your name, Harvard ID, the course title, and faculty name for which you are looking.

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Unable to Play Recordings on my Course Web Site

Are you using Real One Player? Download from ITS software library.

Try to access webcasts outside of MyHLS toolkit. Use this link to see if you can access other webcasts:

Try right clicking on the recording and saving it to the desktop. Double click on the recording from the desktop and see if it plays there.

If still having problems, please send the following:

  • type/version of OS
  • type/version of browser
  • type/version of RealOne player
  • class title, professor and date of recording
  • Name/HUID of student
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Unable to Open a Document on my Course Web Site

Check if you have cookies enabled.

If you are off-campus, check if you are behind a firewall.

Do you have the specific application of the file type you are trying to open? If not, free Microsoft viewers are usually available on the web. Follow this link to download:

If you still have problems after installing plugins/viewers, send the following information:

  • class title & professor
  • file title & location in MyHLS course site
  • type/version of OS
  • type/version of application using to open file
  • Name/HUID of student
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Unable to Receive Mail

The e-mail address that is on file with the University is the one used with the course management system. If you are able to see the course website on your MyHLS "My Courses" box, check if you are receiving e-mails successfully from other course websites. If you don't see the course listed in your "My Courses" box please see I can't log into MyHLS above.

If problems persists, then please send

  • Name/HUID of student
  • correct e-mail address
  • course id e-mail is coming from (if known)

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 Viewing Posts in Discussion Boards

You can see new posts by clicking on the forum itself. You can also set preferences that allow you to receive a real time notification when a post has been made or to receive a daily digest that collects all the posts in one email and sends them once per day.

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Postings Recorded Around Holidays

Students may request to have classes recorded on certain major religious holidays through the Registrar's Office. Please note that 72 hours notice is required to ensure proper staffing and availability of equipment. Requests made less than 72 hours prior to event start time will be accommodated on a case-by-case basis, and service and/or equipment cannot be guaranteed.

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Last modified: December 28, 2011

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