Another important upgrade that came to Blackboard in May is the Content Collection. With it, instructors can keep their course files in one central location, and easily update a file across multiple courses. To learn more about the Content Collection, check out these articles in Experts, register for the Blackboard Green Belt Boot Camp in July, or sign up for an upcoming “Building and Managing Course Content” course. Registration for the Boot Camp or Building and Managing Course Content is through My Learning Connection. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
For users looking to earn their Blackboard Black Belts quickly, Computer Services will be offering a Green Belt Bootcamp on Wednesday, July 8th and a Black Belt Bootcamp on Wednesday, July 15th. Both sessions are from 9:00am – 12:00pm.
In the Green Belt Bootcamp, users will learn how to build and manage their course content, use built in tools and Blackboard Collaborate to enhance communication, and also how to assess learners with Blackboard’s robust assessment tools. In the Black Belt Bootcamp, you’ll learn how to design engaging content, create individual and group learning paths, and how to monitor student activity and master the Grade Center.
Registration is available through My Learning Connection. If you have any questions about the Blackboard Boot Camps, please don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
Grading just got even more convenient with the Bb Grader app, available free of charge to teachers with an iPad running iOS 7.0 or later. With Bb Grader, you can use your iPad to review, provide feedback, and grade Blackboard Learn assignments from the convenience of your mobile tablet. To download the app, simply visit the App Store and search for “Bb Grader”.
• Inline viewing of student submissions
• Support for audio-based and video-based feedback
• Seamless integration with Blackboard Learn
For more information on the Bb Grader app, visit this site, and check out this video to see the app in action!
Before the recent Blackboard update, in order to get a reasonable approximation of what your course looked like to a student, you had to turn Edit Mode “Off”. With the addition of Student Preview you’re able to not only see your course from the student’s perspective, but also submit assignments and take tests as a “demo student”. You can also exit the Student Preview and review your own submissions, but don’t grade yourself too stringently.
The Student View Tool will allow the instructor to:
- See course content exactly how the student sees it.
- Check assignments and assessments to make sure they are configured correctly.
- Take a test/submit assignments to verify functionality.
- View availability of content.
- Verify or troubleshoot issues students may have in a course.
One of the new features in the recent Blackboard Learn update is SafeAssign integration into the normal Assignment function.
You’ll now have an option in the Submission Details section of an Assignment to add the SafeAssign plagiarism check. This is a significant improvement that allows instructors to use the Inline Grading feature, as well as multiple attempts, on assignments that have been selected for plagiarism review.
For more information on how to utilize the SafeAssign feature in Assignments, visit this article in Experts. If you have questions about SafeAssign or Assignment features in Blackboard Learn, please don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
Blackboard will be unavailable on May 22nd and 23rd for an update. When it comes back online, you’ll find some very useful new features including:
- Tabs for Content Collection and Services on the homepage.
- SafeAssign integrated into Assignments.
- Access to the Blackboard Grader App for iPad.
- A true student view that allows you to experience the course exactly how a student would.
To help you make the most of Blackboard and these new features, Computer Services is offering in-person training sessions throughout the summer. Classes will be in the Meyer Library 205 Technology Training Center. Registration for in-person classes is done through My Learning Connection. We’ll also continue to hold the Ask the Experts Blackboard Open Session, both online and virtually, throughout the summer. Just come by the Meyer Library 205 Technology Training Center or click this link any Friday that the University is open between 1:30 – 4:30.
If you’re interested in a customized Blackboard training for your group, office, or department, we’re more than happy to arrange a session. Just email email@example.com and we’ll get in touch to arrange a session specific to your Blackboard usage needs.
If you have questions about the Blackboard updates, in-person sessions, or customized training, please don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
Congratulations to the latest earners of the Blackboard Black Belt! To earn their Black Belt, these individuals attended the entire series of Blackboard training courses offered by Computer Services. Without further ado, here are the Blackboard Black Belt recipients for Spring of 2015!
Jessica Bennet, Library
Tara Boehne, Occupational Therapy
Ashlea Cardin, Occupational Therapy
Sapna Chakraborty, Occupational Therapy
Traci Dalton, English
William Edgar, Library
Diana Garland, BearClaw
Traci Garrison, Occupational Therapy
Yating (Tina) Liang, Kinesiology
Mark Woolsey, Assessment
In additional news, on Thursday, April 23rd a number of recipients of the Blackboard Black Belt met in the Cheek 100 Technology Training Center for the first ever Blackboard Black Belt Summit. There was a lively discussion featuring MOCRA Award winners Stanley Liesure and Ivy Yarckow-Brown on enhancing learning with Blackboard, a sneak peak at the new features coming to Missouri State’s Blackboard system in May, and an open session where Black Belts swapped tips and stories with their colleagues. For information on how you can earn your Blackboard Black Belt, visit the Computer Services Help Desk’s website.
When you have a question about how to use a certain feature in Blackboard or other technology on campus, the Experts Knowledge Base is your best resource. The newly updated site is simple to search, and will conveniently list suggestions when you start typing in the search box. The Knowledge Base also features How-To, Reference, and Troubleshooting articles on a wide range of University specific technology topics such as Email, Printers, and more! If you have any questions about the Experts Knowledge Base, don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
Respondus Exam Author and Studymate are two extremely useful tools available to instructors at Missouri State. Respondus Exam Author is a powerful tool for creating and managing exams that can be printed to paper or published directly to Blackboard, and Studymate helps students “master the basics” of course material through learning activities, self-assessments, and games. If you’re interested in utilizing either tool, please contact the Computer Services Help Desk.
You’re able to create a variety of columns in Blackboard’s Grade Center, but it’s not always necessary. That’s because if you utilize any of Blackboard’s built in assessment tools (Assignments, Tests, Discussion Boards, Blogs, Journals, etc…) and assign a grade to that work, that column is created for you! Along with creating columns for an assignment, there are several “total” columns that can be created as well. You can use these columns to:
- Calculate the total grade.
- Weight grades by column, category, or both.
- Calculate the average grade.
- Calculate a minimum or maximum grade.
If you’d like to learn about working with assignment or total columns in Blackboard, register for the upcoming “Blackboard Learn: Monitoring Student Activity and Performance” class through My Learning Connection or check out these articles in Experts. If you need assistance using the Grade Center, please don’t hesitate to contact the Computer Services Help Desk.