Blackboard upgrade complete

Blackboard has been successfully upgraded, and you can now log in again.

 

For those of you who like to know such things, we are now on Blackboard 9.1, Q2 2019 release, Cumulative Update 2.

You will notice little change in the new release, but it incorporates over 200 bug fixes, and there are additional behind-the-scenes changes designed to improve security and performance.

One change which will be more apparent to students is that – because we use the UK English language pack – when they access the ‘My Grades’ screen this now appears as ‘My Marks’.

This does not automatically change the name of the link on your course menu, but before the start of term we plan to ask Blackboard to update the ‘My Grades’ link on all 2019-20 courses to ‘My Marks and Feedback’. We will keep you updated on this and other enhancements introduced over the summer.

Blackboard unavailable during upgrade 4th – 5th August

System maintenance icon

We will be upgrading to the latest version of Blackboard on Sunday 4th August.

Blackboard and Turnitin will be unavailable while the upgrade takes place: 

Scheduled Start Time: 16:15 BST Sunday 04 August

Estimated Completion Time: 12:00 midday BST Monday 05 August

Malaysia times: 23:15 MYT Sunday 04 August – 19:00 MYT Monday 05 August

 

Look out for details of new features available in Blackboard after the upgrade.

Blackboard Course Rollover 2019 – Course Copy Request form now available

Maintenance icon

Course rollover is the annual process whereby Blackboard courses from the current academic year are copied for use in the next academic year.

Course rollover for 2019-20 will take place on Saturday 29th June 2019

Blackboard downtime will be required, approximately 08:00 – 17:00 BST.

 

The process for 2019-20 will follow a very similar pattern to last year.

If you are responsible for a RISIS module or programme

  • which was used in Blackboard in the current academic year (i.e. in 2018-19)
  • and is scheduled to run again in the new academic year (i.e. in 2019-20)
  • and you would like this Blackboard course copied for use in 2019-20

you need take no action – the course will be automatically copied forward as part of Course Rollover.

The vast majority of Blackboard courses normally fall into this category.

You can check if your course is already scheduled to be copied by searching the Course Copy Status page.

 

In all other cases you will need to use the Course Copy Request Form to raise a request for a course to be copied.

This form is now ready for use.

 

Please see our support page for information on what action you need to take, if you are responsible for any of the following:

Modules which did not run in 2018-19

Brand new modules

Modules with a new RISIS code

Merged Courses

Supplementary courses

 

The Course Rollover page on our help site also provides information on which parts of a course are copied during rollover.

 

Blackboard Course Rollover 2019

Blackboard maintenance icon

Course rollover is the annual process whereby Blackboard courses from the current academic year are copied for use in the next academic year.

This post is to provide advance notice that

Course rollover for 2019-20 will take place on Saturday 29th June

Blackboard downtime will be required, approximately 08:00 – 17:00 BST.

The process for 2019-20 will follow a very similar pattern to last year.

The default position is that any RISIS module or programme

  • which was used in Blackboard in the current academic year
    (i.e. in 2018-19)
  • and is scheduled to run again in the new academic year
    (i.e. in 2019-20)

will be automatically copied forward as part of Course Rollover.

The vast majority of Blackboard courses normally fall into this category.

There are some circumstances where course copying will only take place on request – this applies particularly to Merged and Supplementary courses.

Full details will be circulated shortly, once the Course Copy Request Form has been updated for 2019.

Blackboard Upgrade November 2018

Blackboard upgrade icon

This weekend’s upgrade has now completed. You can log in again as normal, to access both Blackboard and Turnitin.

The upgrade was carried out primarily to enable RISIS-Blackboard integration to take place later in the academic year, but it also brings a number of bug fixes, and makes available a few new features:

Blackboard Assignments

The ability for students to download feedback from Blackboard assignments has been restored. They are now able to download an annotated copy of their work, containing all feedback added using the Box inline grading tool, as a PDF. 

Student help page: Blackboard Assignment – download marked assignment submissions

 

Grading in the Blackboard Instructor app

It is now possible to use the Blackboard Instructor app to mark work submitted to a Blackboard Assignment.

This functionality is very new, and the TEL team have not yet had the opportunity to test it thoroughly, so please use it with caution. Check out the Grading in the Blackboard Instructor app page on the Staff help site.

 

As ever, if you encounter any issues using Blackboard, please contact the IT Service Desk.

TEL team meet our new students at Welcome Week’s Academic Success Fair

Staff from the Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) team and Electronic Management of Assessment (EMA) programme enjoyed meeting our new students at Welcome Week’s Academic Success Fair.  

Pic of Pete & Chris

Pete Moll (L) & Chris Johnson (R) from the TEL team

We had some great discussions with students about Blackboard (our Virtual Learning Environment, VLE), submitting work and accessing marks and feedback online. It was interesting to hear about students’ previous experiences of VLEs, both anecdotally and via a survey we ran on the day.

The headline survey results showed that 54% of students have used VLEs prior to joining UoR and 60% have submitted assignments or coursework online before. It’s worth noting that although many students have prior experience of using a VLE, only 19% have previously used Blackboard.

We have some really useful resources to help students who are new to Blackboard and/or online submissions. These can be found via Blackboard’s Help tab; there’s a searchable site containing helpful resources on all aspects of using Blackboard and Turnitin. 

Congratulations to the 8 winners of our survey prize draw – we’ve emailed you with details of how to collect your Amazon voucher prizes (kindly donated by Blackboard)!

The TEL team would like to wish all our new and returning students every success for the forthcoming year! 

Chris Johnson / Lauren McCann (CQSD TEL)