Online Courses Blackboard Learn

What's New in Blackboard 9 SP 10-11

On Aug 18th, the BOR will upgrade blackboard Learn to SP 10 and SP11. As a result there will be changes to the tool as detailed in the following article:

Whats New Blackboard Learn SP10-11:



Blackboard Upgrade

Blackboard Learn will be down for maintenance August 18, 6am to 10am for an upgrade.

Blackboard Notifications Have Been Enabled

The Notifications have been enabled in Blackboard Learn.



Add Multiple Files to a Content Area, Folder, or Module

Early adopters of Learn may have been disappointed to note that while they could upload multiple files to Learn, they could not place them in content areas more than one at a time.

A new feature has been implemented that corrects this oversight. The document below shows how to use it:



Blackboard Learn Maintainence

The maintenance window for Learn is from 6 to 10 am on Sundays. Avoid using the system during those hours.




Getting Started for Faculty

When an instructor first enters a Blackboard Learn course, it does not create a Content Area for your files by default. Additionally, there is a feature called Content Collection which works much like the File Manager in Vista. Putting files directly into the Content Collection does not make them accessible to the student, without also putting them in a Content Area.

Adding files by going to a Content Area first will also add files to the Content Collection automatically, just as adding files to the Vista Home Page automatically added files to the File Manager. However, unlike Vista you must create your Content Area first.

We strongly suggest Faculty watch this short tutorial to get started even if you use no other training material to learn to use Blackboard Learn:

Blackboard Learn Quick Start Guide

Once a default Content Area is created, you may put content in it. Despite being created, students (and faculty with Edit Mode off) will not see an empty Content Area unless you put some content in it.


Migrate Quizzes from Vista to Learn

We published a set of instructions to the support site that details how to use Respondus to download quizzes from Vista and upload them into Learn. It's not seemless, but it does help with the lion's share of the content:

Instructions for Using Respondus to Copy Tests from Vista


Course Management Transition - Blackboard Learn 9

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

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