OCTET

Oberlin Center for Technologically Enhanced Teaching

By

Blackboard at Oberlin 17-18

Blackboard_logolist of changes for 17-18

Logging in

Your ObieID and password will get you into Blackboard.  Your ObieID is your first initial, last name (max of 8 characters) e.g. jcalisto.  Using your email address e.g. jcalisto@oberlin.edu or john.calistoga@oberlin.edu as your username will not work.

Getting help

Check out the Need Help tab. Common issues are addressed there. A search box will search Blackboard and relevant postings in our site for the answer to your question.  You can also go directly to Help on the Blackboard site. Please don’t spend too much time searching for answers. It is very likely that our office (octet) has already worked through the issue.  Therefore, we recommend a 10-minute rule. If you can’t get an answer in 10 minutes, call (440 775-8345) or email OCTET (bbhelp@oberlin.edu). We highly recommend contacting us if you intend on using the grade center.

FIRST STEPS:

Make sure your personal information is correct

you Most information in Blackboard comes from our Student/Employee information system.  Therefore, if it is incorrect in Blackboard, it is probably incorrect in Banner, our information system. If the information you see in Blackboard is incorrect, contact the appropriate office asap. Having incorrect information in Banner can affect many systems.  Students should contact the Registrar (registrar@oberlin.edu). Faculty and Staff should contact Human Resources (human.resources@oberlin.edu).

While most information is changed via contacting the registrar or H.R., your cell phone number (needed to activate txt messages from Bb), a website URL and your personal pronouns can be adjusted directly from within Blackboard.

 

 

Make sure you have access to the correct courses and orgs

All students should see an advisor and a Class Hub organization. Once a major/minor has been declared, the department org for that major/minor will appear.  Furthermore, when a student is ready to graduate, other organizations will appear.  Classes will appear if they have been made ‘available’ to students by the instructor.

Faculty should see unavailable AND available course sites as well as organizations corresponding to their division and department. They will also see sites for any committees they are on and ones with their advisees already enrolled.  Other miscellaneous organizations may also appear in the My Organizations module.

Set your NOTIFICATION Preferences

Set your notifications and remind your students to do the same.  You can also have Blackboard send txt messages by first adding your cell phone number in your Personal Information settings before going to the Notification Dashboard. There are many ways to get your Personal Information.  The easiest is to click on the ‘Check Info’ option in the My Info module on the landing page (the one with your photo in it).  To get to the Notification Dashboard go to the arrow next to your name in the top right corner, click on Settings and then click on Notification Dashboard (you’ll also see a link to Personal Information in this menu area).

 

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Tabs

The interface is customizable and can be different for staff, faculty and students.  Currently, the design presents 5, or 6 tabs:

Blackboard tabs

  • Academic Hub – Announcements will show up at the top. Frequently used tools will be links in the left column. Courses will show up in the center and organizations in the right column.  Your info will show in the left column under the Tools/Quick link module.
  • Survey – this tab only appears for students when it is time for them to evaluate their course.  Faculty/Staff should always have access to this tab.
  • Courses – list of ALL courses as well as info on registering, course locations etc.
  • Community – list of various organizations and tools are collated here including the user directory and classroom information.
  • Content Collection (only faculty/staff) – provides access to documents, images etc. in all your courses and organizations. It also allows for the storage of ‘institutional’ documents. It acts much like a google drive.
  • Calendars – Academic calendar & Blackboard calendar
  • Need Help? Various request forms can be found here as well as information on how to use specific features.

Don’t forget to check out the subtabs!

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Additional noteworthy functionality:

Modules in each tab can be  …

  • rearrangeddrag the module by putting the mouse in the module header and clicking and holding while moving the module.
  • added
    Click on the Add Module button in the top left margin. If you have other information you would like to have access to as a ‘module,’ contact bbhelp@oberlin.edu with your idea and we’ll see what we can do.
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The Content Collection area (faculty/staff only) allows for easier management of documents.  The link titled ‘Content Collection’ at the top of the site will take you to a window where you can search for, modify, delete or add documents in sites in which you are a member. You can also overwrite files. This will keep the links to the file but show users the new file rather than the old file.  More info


‘Personalize’ your tabs – give them your own color scheme by clicking on the ‘Personalize Page’ option in the top right corner of the site.

Use the Mobile App. Free access to Blackboard mobile app allows the viewing of organization and course materials, the adding of discussion posts and the ability to have other interactions via a phone and/or tablet. There is a fast grader app for iOS devices that looks interesting and a separate one for students (bbstudent).

Activate text messaging and txt to voice capabilities. This is related to the Notifications section but deserves additional attention. Get announcements and information about changes to your courses or orgs via txt or txt to voice messaging. While faculty and organization leaders will still be able to post announcements and send  emails, users can set up additional notification channels by modifying their notification settings.

 

Specific information for instructors of courses