Email Communications

Email communications to NIU faculty, teaching staff, and graduate teaching assistants from the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning

Fall 2021

Mid-term Check-in and Reflection - 10/18/2021New

Dear Colleague:

It’s hard to believe we’ve already reached the mid-point of our fall semester. The mid-point of any course is a great opportunity to pause and check-in with students on their experience thus far as well as for faculty to reflect on their teaching practices and make adjustments that can further promote student success.

If you’ve not yet taken the chance to reflect on what’s working well and what can be improved in your course(s), let me encourage you to do so at this mid-term time of the semester. I’ve found this to be a refreshing exercise for myself in my teaching as well as can help guide my students in reflecting on their own journey, settings goals for continued success, and providing helpful feedback that can be incorporated into teaching practices for the remainder of the semester.

Student Questions for Reflection and Discussion

The following sample questions for reflection and discussion could be developed into a survey form or perhaps ask student to post in a reflection journal in Blackboard:

  • How has the class met your hopes, dreams, and expectations?
  • What kinds of efforts have you made that have helped you have a positive experience in this course?
  • What might you want to try next to enhance your learning in this course?
  • What are some of the key learnings you’ve gained from the course?
  • What connections with classmates have been significant for you?
  • How has this knowledge changed your understanding of the world and yourself?
  • In what ways can you apply the knowledge you’ve gained to the compelling issues of our day?
  • What steps will you continue taking to ensure your success in this course?
  • What adjustments would you suggest your instructor make for the remainder of this course?

Faculty Questions for Reflection

These questions are among those that you can reflect upon yourself to identify areas of strength as well as opportunities for adjustments in your teaching practices:

  • What types of learning community have you helped created in your course?
  • What steps have you intentionally taken to develop an inclusive teaching and learning environment?
  • How well are you connecting the material to your students’ personal and professional experiences?
  • Are your students gaining a greater appreciation of how your discipline explores the compelling issues of the day?
  • Are your students acquiring the skills to engage in constructive dialogue about the many challenges our world is facing?

As you seek to gain mid-term feedback from your students, if you have any questions about how to setup a survey or journal activity for your students in Blackboard or need additional assistance or support with any aspect of your teaching, don’t hesitate to reach out to our Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) team at 815-753-0595 or citl@niu.edu

Enjoy your day,

Jason Rhode
Executuve Director

Classroom Technology Support - Additional Workshop Dates - 8/27/2021

Hello!

I hope the first week of the semester went well for you. It was great to see so many students and colleagues back on campus!

Now that you have been in your classrooms and worked with the existing or updated technology, we thought you might have some questions. To help answer them, the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning is holding another set of workshops on Teaching with Classroom Technology. In these sessions, staff from CITL will provide brief demonstrations and answer questions about teaching with classroom technology, including methods for recording or streaming an in-person class.

Sessions are available in a variety of locations across campus. They will also be live-streamed!

Register for an Upcoming Session

  • Monday, August 30, 10-11 AM Graham Hall Room 333
  • Monday, August 30, 2-3 PM, Reavis Hall Room 205
  • Tuesday, August 31, 9-10 AM, LaTourette Hall Room 300
  • Tuesday, August 31, 3-4 PM, Barsema Hall Room 110
  • Wednesday, September 1, 11 AM-Noon, Anderson Hall Room 246 (Interactive Flat Panel - not recommended for anyone teaching in a classroom with a projector)
  • Wednesday, September 1, 2-3 PM, Engineering Building Room 337
  • Thursday, September 2, 9-10 AM, Visual Arts Building Room 100
  • Thursday, September 2, 3-4 PM, Wirtz Hall Room 103B

On-Demand Sessions

If you prefer, we also recorded samples of the sessions from last week that you can watch on-demand.

Request an Individual Consultation

CITL staff are also available for a limited number of individual consultations, in-person or online. To request a consultation about using classroom technology, email us at citl@niu.edu

Go Huskies!

Stephanie Richter
Director of Teaching Excellence and Support

Guide to a Good First Day of Class - 8/24/2021

Dear Colleague,

As we’re in the midst of launching our courses for the fall semester, I wanted to pass along this article in today’s Chronicle of Higher Education entitled, “How to Teach a Good First Day of Class” by our recent Teaching Effectiveness Institute speaker, James Lang, that is filled with great suggestions for getting your class off to a great start. Whether you’ve already held your first class of the semester or you are still preparing to do so, I hope you’ll find the article as insightful and inspiring as I did. 

Go Huskies!

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

New Course Availability Settings Tool in Blackboard - 8/19/2021

The Division of IT has developed a new Course Availability Settings tool in Blackboard that gives you a definitive answer as to whether your Blackboard course is visible to students and allows you to modify all of the course availability settings on one page.

You can access Course Availability Settings in 3 locations:

  • From the Tools tab on the base navigation, click Course Availability Settings
  • In Original Course View, in the Control Panel, click Course Tools and then click Course Availability Settings
  • In Ultra Course View in the Details & Actions panel, click View Course & Institutional Tools and then click Course Availability Settings

This tool lists all of your courses and identifies whether they are available to students. You can also edit the availability of course start and end dates, if you want to open the course to students.

Learn more about course availability in Blackboard

Accessible Syllabus and Course Materials for Your Students - 8/18/2021

Dear Colleague:

As I know you’re in the midst of preparing your course(s) for the fall semester, I wanted to quickly touch base with two resources that I thought you might find helpful in ensuring that your syllabus and course materials are fully accessible to all your students.

Tips for Creating Accessible Syllabi

PDF files, the predominant format in which most NIU syllabi are posted online for students, inherently lack accessibility features that are necessary for students with visual disabilities to be able to read with screen reader software. To make a PDF file accessible requires use of Adobe Acrobat Pro and some intricate tagging of the PDF file in order for it to be read correctly by a screen reader.

A simpler and more accessible solution for creating syllabi or other text-based documents that are fully-accessible for all students is to use the built-in accessibility features in Microsoft Word and create a Word document that is formatted using Word styles and tools. The steps to do so are actually quick easy and you can find them described in the guide, Creating an Accessible Syllabus in Word. You can also find additional syllabus development resources and a sample accessible syllabus template in this guide.

Blackboard Ally Pilot

Blackboard Ally is a powerful new tool in Blackboard that can make your courses more accessible to all students. Using machine learning algorithms, Ally scans any files you add to your Blackboard course to generate alternative formats for your students and provides you with feedback about the accessibility of your course materials. Ally will also provide you with guidance on how to improve the accessibility of your files, to help you build lasting skills for creating accessible materials.

Beginning this Fall 2021, anyone who is teaching a course at NIU is eligible to sign up to be part of the initial pilot of Blackboard Ally at NIU. You can be among the first to offer students the flexibility of accessing course materials in the format that best meets their needs. Learn more and sign-up for the Ally pilot today!

Let me or any of my team at the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) know if we can be of any further assistance as you prepare for the fall semester ahead.

Go Huskies!

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

Teaching Resources to Begin the Semester - 8/16/2021

Dear New Faculty Colleagues:

It was great to see many of you at the New Faculty Welcome earlier today and as promised, I’m following-up with information and links to a few of the resources that will be most helpful to you this week as you prepare to teach your first semester. You can find these and much more at the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) website – citl.niu.edu

New to Teaching at NIU

Find course policies, teaching policies, and teaching-related resources to help you start your teaching career at NIU successfully!
https://www.niu.edu/citl/resources/guides/teaching-at-niu.shtml

Syllabus Checklist
Design a course syllabus to best meet your teaching style, course content, activities, and departmental requirements. Consider creating a learner-centered syllabus that targets student learning and success!
https://www.niu.edu/citl/resources/guides/syllabus-checklist.shtml

Strategies for Starting the Semester Well
This list of strategies you can use the first day and into the first weeks of the semester that will help you create an engaging, motivating, and organized classroom environment.
https://www.niu.edu/citl/resources/guides/starting-the-semester.shtml

Support Units for New Faculty
Many support units are available at NIU to assist new faculty in their teaching, research, scholarship and artistry. This guide provides a quick overview and contact information to the support units that new faculty often connect with for support.
https://www.niu.edu/citl/resources/guides/support-units.shtml

Flexible Teaching Guides
Flexible Teaching is an approach to course design and delivery that helps students learn and succeed in any mode: face-to-face, online, or hybrid. Gain tips for designing courses that can be successful in any mode of delivery.
https://flexteaching.niu.edu

Academic Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Faculty Toolkit
Resources for culturally responsive teaching,  navigating classroom dynamics, and bias in the classroom, and more.
https://www.niu.edu/diversity/resources/toolkit

Learning Technologies at NIU
Catalog of available and institutionally supported software and web tools to promote collaboration, enhance communication, share multimedia, teach online and more.
https://citl.niu.edu/learning-technologies

Tips for Starting the Semester with Blackboard
Answers to frequently asked questions new faculty, teaching staff, and TAs may have, as they request course space and get ready to develop their courses in Blackboard
https://www.niu.edu/blackboard/guides/tips-for-starting-the-semester.shtml

Blackboard Ultra Course View
Faculty have the option to adopt the Blackboard Ultra Course View which includes a cleaner, more modern design, easy-to-use workflows, and powerful new tools. All courses will continue to use the Original view by default, and faculty can choose whether to enable the Ultra Course View on one or more of their courses.
https://www.niu.edu/blackboard/ultra

Classrooms at NIU
Technology upgrades to classrooms are being implemented for fall 2021 that enable lecture-capture, two-way collaboration between faculty/instructor and in-person/remote students, and live-streaming of lectures to remote students.
https://doit.niu.edu/doit/services/desktop/classrooms

Our Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) is here to support you as you teach either in-person, hybrid, or online. If you ever have any questions or need assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me personally or anyone on our team. You can contact us by phone or text 815-753-0595, email citl@niu.edu or schedule an appointment with a member of our team. We look forward to serving you!

Go Huskies!

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

Reminders for Starting the Semester with Blackboard - 8/12/2021

Dear Department Chairs/School Directors:

Please forward this to all your faculty, teaching staff, and TAs who are in charge of their own courses. The tips below will help those who are new to Blackboard get started, but they also highlight some new and exciting features for everyone.

  1. Requesting a new course on Blackboard
    Your courses are not automatically listed in Blackboard; you must request your courses to be able to build them.

    After logging into webcourses.niu.edu, click the Tools tab at the left of the page, followed by Blackboard Faculty Tools. Click My Courses and then follow the prompts to request your upcoming courses. (Instructions and step-by-step tutorials for requesting your course are also available.) In order to request a Blackboard course, you must be the "instructor of record" for the course in the MyNIU system.

    Those teaching dual-level courses (e.g. 400 and 500 or cross-listed courses) or multiple sections may want to combine their sections into one master course. You must be instructor of record for both sections to be able to request a master course. The resulting “Master Course” will include all of the students from both sections.

    Course requests are processed immediately by the new automated process developed by DoIT. It takes an additional day for someone newly assigned as instructor of record in MyNIU to have permission to request the course in Blackboard. Learn more about requesting Blackboard courses.

  2. Accessing your courses
    You can access all of your courses from the current and previous semesters by clicking Courses at the left of the page. Use the Current Courses drop down menu to select the appropriate term. Fall courses will be listed under Upcoming Courses until the start date. For quick and convenient access, you can use the search tool to find a specific course and you can favorite the courses you use most frequently by clicking the star icon. Learn more about the Courses page.

  3. Ultra Course View
    All courses start in the default Original Course View, but you can choose to switch to the newer Ultra Course View. The Ultra Course View is cleaner and more modern than the Original Course View. You are able to preview and convert your course to the Ultra Course View if you are interested in using it.

    Many new features have been added to Ultra Course View in the last year (like Journals, integration with Pearson MyLab, and more). There are still some features of the Original Course View that are not yet available or that work differently in the Ultra Course View, so we recommend that faculty explore the Ultra Course View before converting their course. We have a list of new features, a feature comparison guide and a decision guide to help faculty determine whether the Ultra Course View would be a good fit for them at this time.

    In addition, faculty can attend an upcoming workshop, watch tutorials on Ultra Course View, or schedule an individual consultation to discuss their course.

  4. Open your course with confidence and welcome students 
    We recommend making your course available to students a few days early with a welcome message, to help them anticipate the structure and expectations of the course. Your course may open automatically at the date you specified when you requested your course in Blackboard, or you can open it manually if you did not set a date. This has led to some confusion in the past about whether a course is really "open" or not, but the new Course Availability Settings tool, custom-built by the Division of IT, will tell you definitively whether your course is open and let you modify any of the availability settings, including the start date of the course.

  5. Adding an image to your profile
    Did you know you can add an image to your profile in Blackboard? It's an easy step that can help students to feel more connected to you. In the Ultra Course View, your profile image appears on the Course Content page, on the Roster, in Discussions, and in Messages. In the Original Course View, your profile appears in Discussions. You can add a photo of yourself or of something that symbolizes you. Your students can add a profile image, as well, which is visible to their classmates. 

  6. Customizing email notifications
    The most important information from across your courses, like new materials, discussion posts or replies, assignment and test submissions, or grades will be automatically emailed to you daily as a digest each night. You will only receive the daily digest email if there was activity in at least one of your courses. You can modify your notification settings to determine what you see in the daily digest emails from your profile or by clicking the gear icon in the upper right of the Activity Stream. Uncheck any notification you do not wish to receive; uncheck all of the items on the email tab to stop receiving the Daily Digest emails. Learn more about the Activity Stream and Notifications.

  7. Join the Blackboard Ally pilot
    Blackboard Ally is a powerful tool that can make your courses more accessible to all students through principles of universal design for learning. Using machine learning algorithms, Ally scans any files you add to your Blackboard course to generate alternative, accessible formats for your students with no work or effort on your part. Ally also provides you with feedback (only visible to you) about the accessibility of your materials and guidance on how to improve the accessibility of your files, to help you build lasting skills for creating accessible materials. This fall, anyone who is teaching a course, including all NIU faculty, instructors, staff, and teaching assistants, are eligible to sign up to be part of the initial pilot of Blackboard Ally at NIU. Learn more about Blackboard Ally and consider joining the pilot!

Learn more about Blackboard

The Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning regularly schedules workshops on using Blackboard for teaching purposes. Faculty, Instructors, and Teaching Assistants receive the program schedule via email each month, or you can view the list of upcoming programs on our website.  

For those who need to learn more about the Original Course View, there is a Self-Paced Blackboard I workshop consisting of short video demonstrations, available at citl.niu.edu/selfpacedbb1

The Teaching and Learning with Blackboard site contains instructions, tutorials, and other helpful information related to using Blackboard for your courses, including answers to Frequently Asked Questions.

For login and password-related questions, please contact the IT Service Desk at 815-753-8100 or ServiceDesk@niu.edu, or use the Division of IT Self-Service system to submit a ticket. For other teaching-related Blackboard questions, faculty can submit questions at niu.edu/blackboard/ask.

Sincerely,

Stephanie Richter
Director of Teaching Excellence and Support

Classroom Technology Training and Support for Fall - 8/4/2021

Department Chairs and School Directors:

As we prepare for a return to in-classroom teaching, we are planning a variety of workshops and services to help your faculty, teaching staff, and teaching assistants be successful with classroom technology this fall. While we’re still finalizing the details, I wanted to pass along to you the preliminary information we have available at this time. We’ll be emailing faculty in the coming days with more details and registration information as soon as we have locations confirmed with DoIT.

Workshops

We are offering fully online workshops about how to teach to a hybrid classroom as well as in-person hands-on workshops (which will also be live-streamed) on how to use the available classroom technology.

Strategies for Managing a Hybrid Classroom

Online

In this workshop, we will discuss strategies to manage a hybrid classroom in which students are in-person and remote, and introduce the technologies to support their learning.

  • Thursday, August 12, 9-10 AM
  • Friday, August 20, 1-2 PM

Livestreaming with Classroom Technology

In-person and live-streamed for online participation

In these sessions, staff from the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) will provide brief demonstrations and answer questions about using the new technology for lecture capture, one-way streaming, and two-way streaming. Sessions will be available in a variety of locations across campus. Because equipment will vary based on the classroom you are assigned, we recommend selecting a session that uses the same base technology (instructor computer and projector vs. an Interactive Flat Panel) and camera (Meeting Owl vs. PTZ) as your assigned classroom.

Session locations and equipment are still being determined, but the times are as follows:

  • Wednesday, August 18, 9 - 10 AM, 11 AM - noon, and 1 - 2 PM
  • Thursday, August 19, 9 - 10 AM, 11 AM - noon, and 1 - 2 PM
  • Friday, August 20, 9 - 10 AM and 11 AM – noon

Consultations

CITL staff are also available for a limited number of individual consultations, in-person or online. To request a consultation about using classroom technology, email us at citl@niu.edu.

Enjoy your day,

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

Summer 2021

Registration Open for the 2021 Teaching Assistant Institute - 7/29/2021

Department Chairs and School Directors:

I am reaching out to inform you that registration has opened for the Fall 2021 Teaching Assistant Institute. More details, including schedule and registration information, is available at citl.niu.edu/ta-institute

Like last year, the Teaching Assistant Institute will be a week-long event, from Monday, August 16th through Friday, August 20th. At this institute, graduate teaching assistants will learn the basic principles of teaching and related responsibilities, receive information about campus support resources, and network with other GAs, faculty, and resource staff. Topics will include cultural competency and inclusive teaching, engaging students, and resources at NIU to support effective teaching and learning.

The Institute will feature a mix of live online discussions and pre-recorded videos as well as asynchronous activities to promote connection and community. While some of the pre-recorded videos will be standard for all TAs participating in the Institute, each TA will also be able to choose from a selection of elective videos based on their experience and role.

TAs will need to attend the live discussions (or watch the recordings) and watch the required core and elective asynchronous videos to receive a certificate. We will track attendance in live sessions and views on the videos for departments that require TAs to complete the Institute. Live online discussions will be held on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday in the morning. Departments that conduct their own training for TAs can integrate the live sessions within their training schedule.

Please share this information and link above with your directors of graduate studies and graduate teaching assistants.

Thank you,

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

Implications for Blackboard when instructor is changed in MyNIU - 7/28/2021

Department Chairs and School Directors:

Being just a few short weeks away from the start of the fall semester, I wanted to touch base on the implications for Blackboard if you need to make any instructor reassignments for any of your fall course sections.

When someone is assigned as instructor in MyNIU (either primary or secondary), that assignment is automatically communicated to Blackboard the next day. If a Blackboard course has not yet been requested, the newly-assigned instructor will be able to request their course and begin developing it the day after they are assigned in MyNIU. If the course was already requested by the first instructor, the second instructor will be enrolled in the pre-existing course and will automatically be granted access to the first instructor’s materials.

When someone is removed as instructor in MyNIU, their access to the associated Blackboard course is automatically disabled the next day. They cannot be manually enrolled by another faculty member because they are technically still enrolled, just disabled. If someone was instructor in MyNIU needs access to a course after they have been unassigned in MyNIU, you will need to contact the DoIT Service Desk at ServiceDesk@niu.edu or it.niu.edu for assistance.

Whenever instructor assignments are changed in MyNIU, it is worthwhile to let both parties know of the change so that the first instructor can remove any materials they do not wish to share with the newly-assigned instructor.

If you have any further questions or if any of your faculty, teaching staff, or TAs need any further assistance in preparing their Blackboard course sections for the fall semester, our Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) team is ready to assist! The all new Teaching and Learning with Blackboard website is another great place to direct your faculty, staff, and TAs for the latest on teaching with Blackboard at NIU.

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

LMS Review Summary and Recommendation - 6/17/2021

Our Learning Management System (LMS) review task force completed its review and has recommended in its final report that NIU continue with Blackboard Learn as our LMS. Senior leadership has approved this recommendation and the Board of Trustees at its meeting earlier today approved a five-year contract extension with Blackboard, thru August 2026.

While each system has strengths and weaknesses, Blackboard Learn received the highest review score, taking into account all the review elements. The overall scoring included feedback from faculty, instructors, staff, and students; technical review; pricing (both for transition and multi-year contract); roadmap of new feature development; and vendor support for transition and training.

Continuing with Blackboard allows faculty to be thoughtful and deliberate about transitioning to a new system on a longer timeframe. Blackboard Learn Ultra has a robust feature set that is being added to rapidly over the next year. Staying with Blackboard is the most affordable solution to the university and provides the most value to our students and faculty.

Moving forward, both Blackboard Original and Blackboard Ultra will continue to be available and faculty can choose when the time is right for them to transition to the Ultra Course view. Faculty are encouraged to check What’s New in Ultra? for the latest updates and feature enhancements.

In addition to our existing Blackboard system functionality, we will be implementing Blackboard Ally and Blackboard Training and Development Manager, which will offer new capabilities for further extending our digital teaching and learning environment. More details and answers to frequently asked questions can be found on our Teaching and Learning with Blackboard website.

On behalf of the entire LMS review task force, thank you to all the members of our NIU community who actively engaged in the review process and provided valuable feedback.

Jason Rhode and Matthew Parks
LMS Review Co-Chairs

Tips for Creating Accessible Syllabi - 5/26/2021

Dear Colleague:

As someone who has been assigned to teach a course this upcoming summer term, I wanted to touch base and offer a few helpful tips for creating an accessible syllabus that ensures all students can fully-access.

PDF files, the predominant format in which most NIU syllabi are posted online for students, inherently lack accessibility features that are necessary for students with visual disabilities to be able to read with screen reader software. To make a PDF file accessible requires use of Adobe Acrobat Pro and some intricate tagging of the PDF file in order for it to be read correctly by a screen reader.

A simpler and more accessible solution for creating syllabi or other text-based documents that are fully-accessible for all students is to use the built-in accessibility features in Microsoft Word and create a Word document which is formatted using Word styles and tools. The steps to do so are actually quite easy and you can find them in the guide, Create an Accessible Syllabus in Word, which include the following:

Headings

Use Heading Styles in the Home tab instead of a paragraph in a different font.

styles found within the home tab

Customize each heading level by right-clicking the heading style.

right-clicking on the heading style to modify 

Lists

Use Lists in the Home tab instead of tabbing using a bullet.

select bulleted or numbered lists from the Home tab 

Tables

Use Table in the Insert tab instead of tabbing to create a table.

select Insert Table from the ribbon

Insert rows and columns by clicking on the table to get the Table Layout tab.

inserting rows and columns using the buttons from within the Table Layout tab

Delete rows and columns by clicking on the table to get the Table Layout tool.

delete rows and columns with the Table Layout tool

Images

Add alternative text to images to convey their meaning to people who can't see them.

adding alt text to an image in Word

  1. Click on an image.
  2. Select the Picture Format tab.
  3. Select Layout & Properties in the Format Picture pane.
  4. Choose Alt Text.
  5. Enter the image description in the Description box.

Columns

Use Columns in the Layout tab to create columns instead of using tab.

use columns tool to insert columns in Word

For an example of a Word document syllabus that is formatted for accessibility following these suggested tips, you can download this sample syllabus template (Word document) and modify for your teaching needs. Don’t forget to include the NIU statement of accessibility for syllabi in your syllabus. Once you’ve developed your syllabus in an accessible Word document, then post that Word file for your students in your Blackboard course as the official syllabus file.

More information on accessible digital materials is available on the Ethics and Compliance Office website.

Let me or any of my team at the Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning (CITL) know if we can be of any further assistance as you prepare for the summer term ahead. More guides and resources on syllabi design and construction are available on our website.

Best,

Jason Rhode
Executive Director

LMS Review Update Announcement - 5/13/2021

Earlier today, we provided the Board of Trustees with an overview and progress update on our Learning Management System (LMS) Review. With NIU currently in the final year of a three-year contract with Blackboard, our current LMS vendor, the university is in the midst of conducting a comprehensive review of the top three leading higher education LMS platforms – Blackboard Learn, D2L Brightspace, and Instructure Canvas – to ensure that we select a platform moving forward that will serve the core interests of the university for years to come. A website has been developed for the project with complete details and answers to frequently asked questions.

We're quickly approaching the conclusion of the review, with campus feedback being compiled and analyzed and each platform being scored according to criteria and rubrics established by the review task force. Efforts are underway to prepare a recommendation for senior leadership by the end of May, with an update on the review process and outcomes along with a request for Board approval at the June Board of Trustees meeting. Assuming that the Board of Trustees votes to approve, an announcement to the university will follow soon after.

To allow time for the review to be conducted and a potential transition to a new system if that is the outcome of the review, a one-year renewal of Blackboard is being sought that will extend our current agreement with Blackboard through fiscal year 2022.

We have been committed to being as transparent and inclusive as possible through this review, with all faculty, instructors, staff, and students having had the opportunity to participate. Thank you to all the members of our NIU community who have actively engaged in the process and provided your valuable feedback.

Jason Rhode and Matthew Parks
LMS Review Co-Chairs

Contact Us

Center for Innovative
Teaching and Learning

Phone: 815-753-0595
Email: citl@niu.edu

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