Welcome to the Blackboard Steering Committee Site

 About the Blackboard Steering Committee

What we do – The Blackboard Steering Committee ensures strategic alignment of OSU’s learning management system with campus needs. Our charter is to establish a repeatable process to gather, evaluate and prioritize requests for features and functionality in Blackboard. Our evaluation criteria are based on impact to students, instructors and data, as well as potential legal, technical, FERPA and disability access issues.

The committee also provides regular reporting to the OSU community on changes and updates to Blackboard.

Who we are – OSU faculty, the Registrar’s office, IT, Technology Across the Curriculum, the Library, Center for Teaching and Learning, and Ecampus are all represented on the committee (ASOSU pending).

Announcing Canvas: OSU’s next Learning Management System

Following a three year period of inquiry, assessment, and collaboration among faculty, students, and administrators to understand the needs of our teaching and learning community, OSU has chosen to replace the current Blackboard learning management system (LMS) with a hosted platform called Canvas. This is a university-wide LMS migration that impacts all modalities of courses taught at Oregon State, including traditional face-to-face, hybrid, and Ecampus online courses. Find out more here: http://blackboard-transition.oregonstate.edu/

Demonstrations of Blackboard and Canvas May 13 and 14

Want to see new features coming soon in Blackboard, or get a tour of Canvas? Instructure (Canvas) and Blackboard will offer online demonstrations of their systems on Tuesday May 13 and Wednesday May 14.

You may attend the web conferences in Kidder 202, or join the conferences online from your own computer. Each event will be be live-streamed and recorded. You can access the web conferences here: http://live.oregonstate.edu/

These demonstrations are a great way to see the systems in action and ask questions (remote participants may enter questions in the webinar chat window).

Tuesday May 13, 3:00-4:30 pm – Instructure Canvas

Wednesday May 14, 2:30-4:00 pm – Blackboard

Questions? contact Lynn Greenough: lynn.greenough@oregonstate.edu 

Publisher Integrations – Update

With OSU’s Learning Management System evaluation in full swing during Spring term, the work to investigate publisher integrations has been deferred. A decision on which learning management will be selected is expected in mid-June 2014. The Blackboard Steering Committee will then take appropriate action, based on the LMS decision outcome. Please stay tuned to this blog for further details.

Kaltura MediaSpace now Integrated with Blackboard

OSU’s MediaSpace is now integrated with Blackboard; this update was applied on April 19, 2014. Instructors can add a Course Gallery to their Blackboard course sites, which allows both students and instructors to add video and audio content.

Content be recorded from a webcam and added directly to the Blackboard site, or users may display existing MediaSpace files in Blackboard. Find out more about the Course Gallery here.

Publisher integrations to be evaluated

As many of you know, an integration to the McGraw-Hill Connect and Create platforms was implemented in Blackboard in Summer 2013. Many instructors have been asking about integrations for additional publishers.

Now that the upgrade to Service Pack 13 is complete, the Blackboard Steering Committee will begin evaluating publisher integrations. Our evaluation will be guided by:

  • The need and number of OSU instructors and students who use a given publisher’s content (the OSU Bookstore is assisting with this analysis).
  • The quality of technical support and technical environment (e.g., uptime; building block configuration, etc.) that a publisher offers. Some are definitely better than others.
  • The value that our learning community will experience (e.g., quality of content integration to the Bb site, and quality of gradebook integration).

We are well aware of the desire to have effective integration between online publisher content and our LMS, and will keep you updated via this blog

Scheduled maintenance for 2014

Blackboard will be taken offline approximately once a month for system maintenance. These scheduled outages will benefit Blackboard users by keeping our system stable and up-to-date.

6AM-9AM on the following Saturdays:

January 25 2014 – complete

February 22 2014 – scheduled outage canceled

April 19 2014 – complete

May 17 2014

July 5 2014

August 2 2014

October 18 2014

November 15 2014

If you have questions about the planned outages, please email lynn.greenough@oregonstate.edu

There are no larger upgrades scheduled at this time, but we will keep you informed as that changes.

Blackboard Upgrade to Service Pack 13

Blackboard was upgraded from Service Pack 9 to Service Pack 13 on December 21, 2013.

At a glance, here are 5 exciting features in the upgrade:

1. Interactive calendar
2. Streamlined assignment grading
3. Improved content editor
4. Improved discussion boards
5. New options to analyze test results

In addition to these five, there are several new updates in Service Pack 13 that will benefit students and instructors. See TAC’s web page for more details on what’s new in the upgrade.