Blackboard Upgrade and Known Issues

Blackboard module rollover and system upgrade June / July 2017 information:

The Blackboard system upgrade has been completed successfully on 11/7/2017.


Current Year Module Switch Over – 1st September 2017

A number of colleges and departments have modules that run across the Current Year Module switch over on 1st September, such as March Entry Nursing, ELTS Pre-sessional Programmes and Taught Masters Programmes across all colleges. Staff in these areas will need to ensure students know what will be happening on 1st September 2017. A Pop Up for all users will appear when first signing on to Blackboard after the Current Year module switch on 1st September 2017. This will remain for two weeks and explain where to find modules.

Remaining key dates related to the Blackboard module rollover and system upgrade are:

  • Friday 1st September                                       Current Year Module Switch Over
  • Saturday 15th – Sunday 16th October           17/18 Modules switched to ‘Current Year’ tab, 16/17 Modules switched to ‘Previous Year’ tab

If you have any questions about the module rollover process or system upgrade please contact us as soon as possible:

Information relating to  Blackboard rollover and upgrades:

Further information detailing the new features and known issues can be found here.

Reminder of the Current University Minimum Requirements for Blackboard Modules

In order to enhance the information provided to students and develop the use that the University makes of Blackboard, a minimum requirement has been set for Blackboard module sites by the University Learning & Teaching Committee.

All new Blackboard module sites will be created with a course template matching the list below:

  • Home
  • Announcements
  • Module Information
  • Staff Contacts
  • Module Content
  • Assessment & Feedback
  • Reading List
  • LibGuides
  • Tools
  • Staff Support (this menu item is for staff only and is not viewable by students)

Additionally all lecture materials should be made available on Blackboard in advance of the lecture (at least 24-hours in advance).

New Features & Known Issues

Empty Files are Submitted to Assignments for Microsoft Edge Users

When using Microsoft Edge, if a file that is submitted to an Assignment is open at the time of submission, an empty file is uploaded instead. This problem is isolated to occur when using Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 operating system. Microsoft to correct the issue but do not have a resolution date at this time.

Users are advised to use a different browser such as Chrome or Firefox

Menu colour change

The menu within modules and organisations has changed from white text on a blue background to white text on a black background. This has happened because the previous ‘theme’ used in modules and organisation sites is no longer supported by Blackboard Inc. for the upgraded service.

Test/Surveys in rolled over modules

Deployed tests in official 1617 modules that were rolled over (content copied) to 1718 modules will be deployed in the new 1718 instance of the modules. Academic staff should ensure adaptive release rules, time limits and passwords etc. are amended for the 1718 module cohort if necessary.

Instructors are Unable to Input a Score in a Grade Centre Cell for Multiple Assignment Attempts

This issue is targeted to be fixed by Blackboard. There is a workaround which is as follows:

Access the grade details page for the users attempt, then click on the Manual Override tab. From there the Instructor can enter the grade manually. Remember to click Save when completed.

Blackboard Assignment Grading – New Options

Anonymous Marking

Anonymous Marking hides student names from submission attempts in Inline Grading and the Grade Centre, making them anonymous. At any time, you can disable anonymity and show student names by unchecking the checkbox. You also can automatically disable the grading anonymously option by completing one of the following:

  • On Specific Date: This begins to disable anonymity before the end of the selected date.
  • After All Submissions Are Graded: This option requires a due date to be set for the assignment. Once the due date has passed, if all submissions have been graded, anonymity will be automatically disabled.

Note: Once submissions have been made to an assignment, you cannot enable or re-enable anonymous grading.

Delegated Marking

Delegated Marking allows you to delegate grading responsibilities to multiple graders in the course. Graders may be assigned to grade:

  • None
  • All Submissions
  • Random Set. The grader is assigned to grade a random set of the selected number of students. If multiple graders are assigned to grade a random set, students are distributed evenly before any student is included in multiple random sets.
  • Groups. The grader grades all students who are part of the selected course group(s).

Edge Browser Inaccurately Records Student Responses to Hot Spot Questions on Tests

When students respond to Hot Spot questions on tests, the browser uses built-in tools to determine the coordinates of the point where students clicked on the image. Edge does not record these coordinates accurately when in compatibility mode. Depending on the version of Internet Explorer, either the student’s response will not be recorded (nothing will happen when the student clicks the image), the marker that indicates the location of the student’s response will appear somewhere other than where he or she clicked, or the coordinates will be recorded with decimals. In all cases, the answer is marked incorrect.

To avoid it this please inform students to use Firefox, Chrome, or Safari to access Blackboard when taking tests/quizzes that include Hot Spot question types.

Adding dates within Blackboard settings

Manually typing in dates and times instead of using the date picker (e.g. choosing dates within which a piece of content is available) is not working correctly. A workaround is to use the date picker instead as this method correctly sets the date and time.

Reordering items within a module

If when moving items within a module using drag and drop depending on the browser or length of the item list causes the screen to freeze. To overcome this use the Keyboard reordering function (located in the top right hand corner of the page just under the Turn edit on/off button).

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