As you may have heard, we will be transitioning to a new course management system over the course of this academic year. The Board of Regents is now providing access to Blackboard Learn 9, and we expect to be fully transitioned by the Fall of 2013. Unlike previous upgrades, this transition will result in a very different Blackboard. In fact, we do not look at this as an upgrade, but rather an implementation of a totally new product. Additionally, there is no automatic course migration for Faculty's content. Therefore, the transition will require a significant commitment to training, and we recommend that Faculty use the training as an opportunity to migrate their content. The transition process outlined below was created to make the migration as smooth as possible.
Despite the hurdles, the new Blackboard represents a significant leap in features and capability, including support for mobile technology, audio and video support, and other modern online tools. A chart detailing changes compared to the current Blackboard Vista can be seen here.
The Transition Process
Fall 2012 - Training Begins
Blackboard Learn 9 training sessions will be available on the dates listed below. Participants will be given blank courses for use during training, as well as to keep after the class. Any courses that are built in training will be available to the faculty member when we go live.
- Spring 2013 - Pilot
Blackboard Learn will be available to the faculty who wish to transition, and training opportunities will continue to be available. Blackboard Vista will also be available for those that don't. All courses will automatically appear in Learn whether faculty choose to use them or not, and this will be the norm going forward. This is a significant change from our current process where faculty request their course in eWeb. During our pilot, Faculty that use Blackboard will have to communicate to students which system they are using (Vista or Learn). Faculty who use Vista in the Spring will continue to request courses via eWeb. Upon the conclusion of the Spring 2013 Semester, Blackboard Vista will not be available.
- Summer/Fall 2013 - Blackboard Learn Goes Live
Blackboard Learn will be our only Course Management System. Courses created in Learn during the pilot or training will be available for copying into the Summer and Fall Term.
- Blackboard Learn 9 Training
Spring Dates TBA
If you any questions about the process, please contact me. If you wish to take any of the available training listed below, please contact Barbara Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org.