Blackboard Learn, the course management system used by Kendall College faculty, staff, and students, continues to be an important platform for facilitating teaching at learning at Kendall College. Over the past several years, there have been significant upgrades implemented to the system which have added many new features as well as an improved overall user experience.
We currently use version 9.1.2017.Q2. We upgraded from version 9.1.2014.Q2 on Monday, October 16, 2017.
In order to ensure that our inline grading tool (currently called "Crocodoc") continues to work, Laureate needs to apply an additional update and install a new inline grading tool called "Box View". During this time, Blackboard will be UNAVAILABLE.
Blackboard Outage to Complete Upgrade ------------------------------------- START: Wednesday, December 27, 12:00 am CT END: Wednesday, December 27, 12:00 pm CT
NEW FEATURES AND ENHANCEMENTS
After our upgrade to version 9.1.2017.Q2 on Monday, October 16, 2017, we have set the stage for many new features and enhancements, some of which are already available. Here is an on overview of those new features and enhancements:
The new look of Blackboard is specifically designed to be mobile-friendly. It resizes based on screen size for use on smaller devices like smartphones, and the Submit button is always at the bottom of the screen instead of the bottom of the page (so there is less scrolling). The new design also includes new icons for most content and assessments, to match the new look. For a consistent student experience between Blackboard on a desktop/laptop and on a smartphone, however, course menu items can no longer be changed from text links to buttons.
Currently, students are NOT able to use the Blackboard app (i.e., the app available on Google Play at http://bit.ly/1Rhvlf0 or iTunes at http://apple.co/2xuUaQ8) because currently students are required to access Blackboard by way of the Student Portal using portal credentials. By logging in to the Student Portal, they are automatically signed in to Blackboard, which means they do not have to remember portal credentials AND Blackboard credentials. If asked about Kendall College having a Blackboard app, please tell them that Laureate Blackboard is working on a "work around" that enables Kendall College students to use the app to access Blackboard by way of the Student Portal.
Assignment Submission Receipts
Faculty and students will be able to better track whether Assignments were submit successfully with submission receipts. When students submit Assignments successfully, the Review Submission History page will include a banner and confirmation number. Students can copy and save this number as proof of their submission and evidence for academic disputes. For assignments with multiple attempts, students will receive a different number for each submission. For group attempts, each student will receive a separate confirmation number.
Faculty will be able to easily send system-generated reminders for missing coursework in the Grade Center to students and members of groups who have not submitted work. Students will receive a system-generated email that lists the course, coursework, and the due date (if included).
Box View Replaces Crocodoc (Inline Grading)
Box View will completely replace the Crocodoc feature in your courses starting on Friday, January 12, 2018, with the same general workflows and interface elements. You'll see some slight differences in the interface, primarily more streamlined buttons and options.
Box View supports over 100 file types, including text-based documents, presentations, images, audio and video files, flash/mobile video files, and 3D files. You can annotate on student's work with a highlighter and comments. (The drawing annotation in Crocodoc is not available in Box View.) Users can download and print a copy of the student’s file, but annotations will not appear.
What happens to the Crocodoc annotations?
All annotations created in Crocodoc will be converted to drawings and “burned” into a PDF. The PDF will be available to download in the new Box View. If desired, additional annotations can be made using the new annotation features of Box View.
Drag and Drop
It is easier than ever to attach files in Blackboard. Faculty can now add files to Items and Assignments by dragging files from their computers to the "hot spot" in the Attach Files area. Students can also drag files to upload when they submit assignments.
Fewer Needs Grading Items
When you allow multiple attempts on an Assignment or Test, you may not need to grade all of them. With this update, the Needs Gradingpage will automatically be filtered to only display the attempts that need grading. When you set up the assessment, you can specify whether the grade is based on the first attempt or the last attempt, and now the Needs Grading page will only display one attempt per student based on that choice. You can still display all of the attempts, if you want to see the others.
When creating an announcement, "Not Date Restricted" is now selected by default.
Discussion Board Thread Navigation
You can now navigate from thread to thread without having to return to the main Discussions page.