Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
We have compiled some frequently asked questions to help you get started. Do you have a question that isn't answered below? Reach out to us for help!
Yes, you can use the Test Availability Exception setting in Blackboard. You can change the settings for one or more students, such as extending the timer or availability window.
Blackboard Assignment - Create assignments in Blackboard so students can turn work in electronically. The assignments can be graded from anywhere you can access Blackboard, and you can provide feedback by commenting directly within any Word or PowerPoint file using Inline Grading. Consider using SafeAssign to avoid plagiarism and promote academic integrity. Blackboard Interactive Rubrics take a little time to set up, but can make grading faster. If students are completing work better suited to hand writing on paper as opposed to typing, ask them to scan or take a photograph of their work and submit the file.
Blackboard Tests allow you to ask objective questions (like multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, or matching) as well as open-ended questions (like short answer or essay). To ensure academic integrity, we recommend setting clear expectations, using a timer, and building Question Banks (Ultra Course View) or Pools (Original Course View) to randomize the questions that each student answers.
It’s important to keep up with grading on Blackboard so students can track their progress. After logging into Blackboard students should look for My Grades or Grades.
Review the Tips for Preventing Online Cheating. You may want to consider using question pools, setting a timer or mixing objective and subjective question types.
You can create recorded lectures or videos quickly using a variety of tools. Just as you would break a lecture into multiple sections with interaction and activities when meeting face-to-face, we recommend breaking recorded content into short segments of 5-10 minutes in length as opposed to recording long lectures.
The easiest way to do this quickly is to use VoiceThread. You can upload PowerPoint slides or other documents and media then add audio narration. Students can respond and discuss the content via text or audio. VoiceThread is integrated into Blackboard for quick access to create and post materials. Equipment: You will need a computer and either a microphone or telephone to record audio.
The University Libraries can assist you in finding and providing access to ebooks, articles, steaming videos, and other content for your course. View the library’s guide for continuity of library services and resources for more information.
University Libraries can provide research instruction and support through remote formats.
- Library tutorials – Short, YouTube videos about how to navigate library resources.
- Online Library Orientation Blackboard Module – Includes four, self-paces modules of tutorials and/or readings on basic library skills and a short quiz. For additional information, contact Larissa Garcia (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Ask a Librarian Reference Services - Chat, Text (815-782-0396), or use the Ask A Librarian Submission Form
- Contact the Subject Specialist – Post contact information for your subject specialist librarian so students can contact them directly for assistance.
If your face-to-face course includes student discussions, you can still hold those discussions online. While you may be most familiar with the traditional Discussion Board in Blackboard, there are a few alternatives that you can use for more dynamic and interactive discussions.
You can use Blackboard Collaborate for live discussions or debates. Because Blackboard Collaborate has integrated telephony and mobile access, it is really easy for students to participate in a session via audio and engage in a lively discussion. Equipment: There are a lot of options. You can use a computer with a microphone (preferably a headset with microphone for best results), a computer and a telephone to dial in, or a smartphone or tablet. Wi-Fi is usually recommended over cellular data for anyone using a smartphone or tablet, due to the high bandwidth required.
You can hold asynchronous discussions using VoiceThread. You can post slides with narration, video, or other documents and media, and ask students to answer specific questions or submit comments. Students can use a computer and microphone or a telephone to record their responses, or they can reply via written text. VoiceThread is integrated with Blackboard for convenient grading of student participation.
Synchronous Class Sessions
Yes! Provide your students with instructions on how to participate in a Blackboard Collaborate session. Students can participate in Blackboard Collaborate sessions on their mobile device in the recommended browsers or the Blackboard app.
Yes, you and your students could meet at a distance. The simplest solution may be to arrange a phone call. You could also use at web-conferencing tool like Blackboard Collaborate or Microsoft Teams or Zoom. For equipment. you can use a computer with a microphone (preferably a headset with microphone for best results), a computer and a telephone to dial in, or a smartphone or tablet. Wi-Fi is usually recommended over cellular data for anyone using a smartphone or tablet, due to the high bandwidth required.
Supporting Quarantined Students
The simplest solution is to schedule individual Blackboard Collaborate sessions for each student who is completing the exam remotely. The sessions can all occur at the same time and you as the faculty member can be in all of the sessions simultaneously by opening them in separate browser tabs or windows. You can change the size of your browser window to view more than one at a time, if you want to do so.
When you want to speak to a single student at a time, you can enable your microphone in that session. If you want to speak to all of the students who are taking their exam remotely at the same time, you can turn on your microphone in all of the sessions to be heard simultaneously by all of them.
Because the Collaborate scheduling tool is visible to all students in the class, it is also recommended that you name the sessions with numbers or another anonymous code instead of using student names.