OCTET

Oberlin Center for Technologically Enhanced Teaching

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Course menu missing when entering the course, unable to navigate course materials

If you are unable to see the main course menu, the most likely problem is that the main course menu has been hidden or minimized.  To fix this, locate the arrow on the left margin of the browser window about half way down the page.  Click this arrow to show the main course menu and return the site to normal navigation view.  Here’s a short video explaining what it looks like and how to correct the problem.

Hidden Menu Help Video

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Adding links and items to the main menu

The Course Menu appears on the left side of your course window. It is the cornerstone for the organization and navigation of your course. You create links on the Course Menu to present tools and materials to users. You can customize its appearance and order the links.   Instructors or leaders can add links to the menu that point to:

  • content areas within the site  (such as course documents)
  • external links (websites outside of Blackboard)
  • course links (such as discussion boards or links to specific materials in the site)

For more information about the course menu, please click here.

 

To add a menu item:

  1. First check to be sure the “Edit Mode” button in the top right corner of the page is set to “ON”.
  2. Above the main menu, you should see a blue box with a white plus sign (see image at right).  Click the plus button for a drop down menu of options as shown here:
  3. Decide what type of item you want to add to the menu.  Click the appropriate link in the menu and follow the instructions for the type of item:
  • Create Content Area: Content Areas are the top-level course areas. They hold all of your course materials. They are created, linked, and managed on the Course Menu. Typically, courses contain multiple Content Areas. After creating a Content Area, you add content to it, such as online lectures, multimedia, tests, and communication tools.
    • Select Create Content Area from the plus menu.
    • Give it a name (this is the name that will appear in the main menu).
    • Check the box to make it available to those enrolled in the course or organization.
    • Click SUBMIT.
    • For more information about the content areas, please click here.

    To view a video on creating content areas, please click here.

  • Create Tool LinkCreate a link to an available tool in the course.
    • Select Create Tool Link from the plus menu.
    • Select the tool type from drop down list.
    • Give it a name (the name will appear in the main menu).
    • Check the box to make it available to those enrolled in the course or organization.
    • Click SUBMIT.
    • For more information about creating tool links, please click here.To view a video on creating tool links, please click here.

     

  • Create Course link: Create a shortcut to an existing area, tool, or item in a course.
    • Select Create Course Link from the plus menu.
    • Click “Browse” to show the course map.  Select a folder or item to link to and click it.
    • Give the link a name (the name will appear in the main menu).
    • Check the box to make it available to those enrolled in the course or organization.
    • Click SUBMIT.
    • To view a video on creating course links, please click here.
  • Create External link: Create a link to a URL to provide quick access to a resource on the Internet.
    • Select Create External Link from the plus menu.
    • Give it a name (the name will appear in the main menu).
    • Enter a link for the site–be sure to begin with http://
    • Check the box to make it available to those enrolled in the course or organization.
    • Click SUBMIT.

 

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Make a menu item available or unavailable to users

Instructors and Teaching Assistants can make a menu item available to users in their courses. You will know a menu item is not available to users because there will be a small icon to the right of the title of the menu item.  The icon is a box with a diagonal line running through it (see image below).  If you place your mouse over the icon you should get a pop up message that says “This link is hidden from students”.

unavailable

Steps to make a menu item available:

  1. Make sure that the “Edit Mode” in the top right hand corner is “On.”
  2. Navigate to the menu item you now want to make available to users and click on the double-down arrows to the far right of the title.
  3. From the drop down menu select the entry titled “Show Link”.  This will make the menu item available to users (students/participants).  The menu item will automatically become available to users.  You will know the menu item is now available to users because the icon which shows the menu item is unavailable will disappear.

Steps to make a menu item unavailable:

  1. Make sure that the “Edit Mode” in the top right hand corner is “On.”
  2. Navigate to the menu item you now want to make available to users and click on the double-down arrows to the far right of the title.unavailable
  3. From the drop down menu select the entry titled “Hide Link”.  This will make the menu item unavailable to users (students/participants).  You will know the menu item is now unavailable to users because the unavailable icon will appear

For more information about editing the main course/org menu, please click here.