Finally, the new semester has arrived! If you are using Blackboard for your teaching needs, here are a few things you can do to ensure a smooth start:
Post your content:
You can post your syllabus and other documents to Blackboard by following these steps:
- Make sure your edit mode is turned to “on” (the “edit mode” button is on the top right corner of your course home page;
- Go to the folder where you’d post your content (such as “information” for posting syllabus);
- Move your cursor over to “build content”;
- Select “file” if you want to attach your document (for shorter descriptions, you can choose “item” and copy and paste your content from your word processor);
- Fill out the other fields as needed;
7 .Click on “submit” to complete it.
Set up release dates:
You may have various content or activities in your course. If you want to release course components at specific windows of time, now is a good time to do it. For instance,you can make quiz for week 1 to be open only at this time. Here is how you can do it:
- Go to the folder where you include the quiz;
- Click on the contextual menu to the right of the quiz: ;
- Click on Edit;
- On the “Edit Item” page, scroll down to number 3. Options.
- Under “Select Date and Time Restrictions”, set the time frame for which the quiz is available. To do so, enter the start date and time for “Display After” and enter the end date and time for “Display Until”.
- Click submit.
Make your course available:
By default all courses are “unavailable” at the beginning of the semester so that you can work on it without students seeing your “work in progress”. Now is the time to make the course available to students. Here is how:
- Click on “Customization” on the “Control Panel”;
- Click on “Properties”;
- Scroll down to “3. Set Availability”
- Click “Yes” to turn on the course
- Click “Submit”.
Post an announcement:
When students first go to the course, there is nothing on the course home page. You might want to post an announcement to direct students to the various places where you post your course documents and activities, such as “Course Information” for course syllabus and other introductory information, or “Course Documents” for course documents. Most students may figure it out very easily, but it is a good idea to be explicit. If students go to their course home page and see nothing, they may suspect that the course is not yet up and running. An announcement may solve the problem. To post an announcement, following these steps:
- Go to “Control Panel”
- Find “Announcements” under “Course Tools”.
- Click “Create Announcement”.
- Fill our all the necessary information;
- Check the box beside “Send a copy of this announcement immediately” if you want an email to be sent to students’ mailboxes.
- After you’ve created your announcement, click “Submit”.
Send students an email:
If you prefer to send students email messages only, you can email directly to students from Blackboard. The benefit for doing that is that all students in your classes are listed in the Blackboard course, so you do not have to create email lists in Outlook or any other mail server. The email tool can be found under “Course Tools” on the “Control Panel”.
You can send email to all members in your class or you can select specific users to email to. Please select the type of users you want to send email to, and click on your choice to proceed to your message editor.
Contact the North Institute at 1850 if you need an orientation.