Blackboard Tips for Instructors and Teaching Assistants

This module provides an introduction to faculty and teaching assistants on some of the more useful features of Blackboard.



Basic Set Up, Orientation, and Adding Content

Creating a New Site or Copying Your Old Site to a New Semester

This short video shows how to request creation of a new Blackboard site for a new course, or request that an old Blackboard site be copied into a new semester. (2:05)

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Note that if you want to copy another instructor's site (say, section A1) into a new site for your (e.g., section B1), you will have to submit a request ticket to the BUMC Help Desk.


Making Your Course Available to Students

When your new course is initially created, it is unavailable to students. You need to make it available by going to "Customization"  


and then select "Properties.".



 The next window will allow you to make the course available to registered students.




Archiving Old Courses and Retrieving from the Archive

All of your past Blackboard sites are saved in an archive. This video shows how to manage the archive and retrieve old sites on which you were listed as instructor, course builder, teaching assistant, etc. (2:33)

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Basic Set Up of Your Site

This video provides a basic orientation to a typical Blackboard site. (5:29)

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Announcements - Posting and Sending

The video below demonstrates how to post announcements and send them as emails. (1:49)

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Users - Deleting, Adding, and Changing Their Status

Students who register on time are added to your course roster automatically, but students who register late need to be added by you manually. In addition, you need to manually add teaching assistants, co-instructors, and anyone else who is not registered. Also note that when students register but then drop the course, they will remain in the roster until you manually remove them The video below will show how to make additions and deletions. (1:43)

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Creating a Discussion Forum

This video shows how to create and maintain the Discussion Board. (2:52)

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Creating New Folders & Adding Content

The next video shows how to add content such as PDF files and Word files. (5:51)

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Videos on Blackboard

Videos can also be posted on your Blackboard site by clicking on "Build Content" and then selecting "Video."

One small caveat is that videos will play automatically when viewed using Firefox because of a default setting in the Firefox configuration. So, if you post a video in Course Documents, it will play automatically whenever Course Documents is opened. Moreover, if you post two or more videos in the same folder, they will all autoplay simultaneously whenever the folder is opened. IT is aware of this problem, but it has not been resolved as of this writing. The best solution for now is to place each video in its own subfolder. Then the video will autoplay, but only when the subfolder is opened. [An alternative solution is for the user to manually disable the Firefox autoplay configuration. To do this the user must open Firefox and type: about:config in the address bar, then search for media.autoplay.enabled. When that comes up, the user clicks on the setting to disable the autoplay feature.]

Videos do not autoplay when Chrome or Safari is used as the browswer, but videos also don't open in Chrome because it doesn't support the plugin used to play the video. In order to watch the video in Chrome, the viewer needs to download the video and play it in a computer application.