Go To: 

Semester Announcements

Please Note: Due to COVID-19, All Fall 2020 Semester Courses Will Be Taught Online.

See "Bb Tools" and "Teaching with Bb" links for additional online resources.
See Blackboard Collaborate below for more information on Blackboard Collaborate Ultra.

For more information visit eFaculty Semester Announcements

Use the accordions below to find helpful tools, resources, and important information relevant to the eFaculty.

Teach Online

Online Express Training

The Online Express (OE) training at Prince George’s Community College is open to all PGCC full-time and adjunct faculty members. 

There are two Online Express training programs; the first prepares new online faculty to teach an existing online or hybrid course, and the second program prepares faculty to develop a brand-new online or hybrid course. 

Please review the details below to know which program meets your needs:

  • Faculty Preparation for new online faculty who are scheduled to teach an existing online or hybrid course
  • New Course Development for experienced faculty who are scheduled to develop and deliver a new online or hybrid course
NEW ONLINE OR HYBRID COURSE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
Online and Hybrid Course Development Update: Online Course Development is currently on hold. 

Please check this page frequently for the updated timeline.

The New Course Development program is designed for faculty who are developing a new online or hybrid course. Faculty who have not taught online at the College will be required to attend the Online Express Faculty Preparation Training Program before beginning new online or hybrid course development. All course development is to be completed one year before offering the course. 

New Online or Hybrid Course Development Overview

All new online and hybrid course development will be completed in accordance with the Quality Matters (QM) 2018 rubric (6th ed.). Faculty developers who do not have experience with the 2018 rubric will be required to complete a QM rubric overview before developing a new online or hybrid course.

Is My Course Suitable for Online Format?

When considering what course(s) your department would like to develop as a new online or hybrid offering, it is important to consider the following factors:

  • Does the course currently exist in an on-campus format?
  • Are course content, learning activities, and student assessments conducive to online or hybrid delivery? For example, if hands-on learning or assessment is required, the hybrid format may be more suitable.
New Course Development Application Process
  • Complete the New Course Development application. All faculty interested in participating in the New Online or Hybrid Course Development program must complete the New Course Development application
  • Obtain approval signatures from the department chair and dean. The New Course Development application is reviewed, approved, and signed by the department chair and dean.
  • Submit the approved, completed application to eLearning Services.
  • Upon application approval, the faculty member develops the new course in accordance with the New Course Development guidelines.
  • The New Course Development program does not include required on-campus meetings; instead, it is a structured program with set due dates and required development milestones. The faculty developer must adhere to the scheduled deadlines for course development assignments and course review meetings to ensure course review and approval.
  • All newly developed online and hybrid courses must successfully meet the final review conducted by eLearning Services. This review serves to ensure all development guidelines have been met.
New Online or Hybrid Course Development Stipend Information
Format Description Stipend   All stipends granted during the semester approved for New Course Development Program.
Online  All online instruction, no on-campus classroom meetings.  All course materials developed to be delivered online. 3 ECH
Hybrid Combines online instruction and on-campus classroom meetings. Course materials developed must coordinate online and on-campus instruction. ECH proportionate to the percentage of the course that will be conducted online, not to exceed 2ECH
Shared Online Two or more faculty co-teaching a single online or hybrid course Based on course details, not to exceed 3ECH
ONLINE EXPRESS FACULTY PREPARATION TRAINING PROGRAM

Faculty Preparation for new online faculty who are scheduled to teach an existing online or hybrid course.

Faculty Preparation Overview

New faculty who are scheduled to teach an existing online or hybrid course will be identified by their department chair for participation in the Online Express (OE) Faculty Preparation training program. Following chair recommendation and confirmation by eLearning Services, the faculty member will receive instructions on how to register in Cornerstone for this online training. The registration must be approved by the department chair.

Upon chair approval, the faculty member will be enrolled in the appropriate Blackboard course to complete the OE Faculty Preparation training program. This program is a 10-to-12-hour online learning experience. The goal of this program is to prepare new online faculty to modify and teach an existing online or hybrid course.

Faculty will learn about online pedagogy, best practices in online learning, effective online course management, elements of the Quality Matters rubric, and PGCC essentials for using Blackboard. Faculty members will also have the experience of being an online learner. The training consists of the following:

Online Modules (10 to 12 hours of facilitated and self-directed learning modules).  All new faculty who complete the OE Faculty Preparation training must have the modified online or hybrid course reviewed by eLearning Services before it opens to students. The updated online or hybrid course must be submitted for review no later than two weeks before the course is scheduled to be available to students in any given semester. This review is critical to the training program and ensures that all development guidelines have been met.

Online Express Faculty Preparation Registration Process
  • Department chairs receive a “call for action” to submit new online faculty names and online or hybrid course information for the OE faculty training program.
  • eLearning Services confirms faculty and course information submitted and follows up with chairs as needed.
  • Faculty participating in the program will receive instructions from eLearning Services on how to register in Cornerstone.
  • The department chair must approve faculty registration in Cornerstone.
  • Following chair approval, eLearning Services will notify faculty of their enrollment into the appropriate Blackboard course
Online Express Faculty Preparation Training Schedule
Faculty scheduled to teach existing online or hybrid course in: Chairs submit Faculty, Course Information Training Period Course Review Period
SUMMER      February 19, 2020 February 24 to March 13, 2020 Two weeks before the date when the course is available to students.
FALL March 12, 2020 April 13 to May 8, 2020

Semester Preparation

GET READY

Verify in Owl Link the course name, number, and section that you are assigned to teach online.

  • If you are not the instructor on record in Owl Link, please contact your department chair to update Owl Link. This is also important so that you can monitor student enrollments.
  • If you are listed in Owl Link as the instructor, you should see your course shell in Blackboard within two days of being entered as the instructor in Colleague.

Decide if you will be conducting an instructor-led orientation session

  • If you are interested in conducting an on-campus session to meet with your students on the evening of the eLearning orientation session, contact eLearning Services to coordinate the session.

Get your Blackboard course ready for students

  • Update the course syllabus, course dates, announcements, and other information.
  • Students will have access to your course in Bb four days before the start of the course (five days for the spring semester).

GET SET

  • Verify your course listing on the eLearning website to ensure your course information is accurate.
  • Finalize all course updates on Blackboard to ensure the course is ready for student access.
  • Online students gain access to their online course materials four days before the course start date (five days for the spring semester). This allows students to view the syllabus and prepare to begin the online course.
  • Check the course roster in Owl Link to monitor the number of enrolled students.
  • Prepare for your instructor-led orientation session (if applicable).

GO…

Four days before the course start date, conduct your instructor-led eLearning orientation session (if applicable).

  • Be prepared for students to access your course. Encourage students who missed the eLearning orientation session to view the student orientation course on Blackboard. All students registered for a credit course are automatically enrolled in the orientation course.

On the start date of the course:

  • Log in to Blackboard, and begin teaching your online course!

How Do I?

How do I log in to Blackboard for Faculty

Blackboard is a web-based program that serves as the College's online classroom. You can use Blackboard to communicate with your students, post your course materials, create assignments, and conduct class discussions. To log in to your Blackboard course, you must have your Owl Link user ID and password.

  • All PGCC Faculty must log in to Blackboard using their Owl Link user ID and password.
  • New PGCC Faculty must setup their Owl Link account through their department chair.
  • Click here if you have forgotten your Owl Link user ID or Password.

Once you have your Owl Link user ID and password, go to the Prince George's Community College Blackboard website at https://pgcconline.blackboard.com. (Note: There is no "www" in the Blackboard address.) 

To log in, type your Owl Link user ID and password.

  • If your log in is successful, you will see the Blackboard "Welcome" screen. In the box labeled "My Courses," you will see the course or a list of classes that you are teaching or in which you are enrolled. Click on the course name to enter your Blackboard course.
Need help?

Need technical assistance? Visit the Tech Support page

Other questions? Contact Us.

What about Blackboard email?

Your faculty email address in Blackboard is your PGCC email address (OwlLinkID@pgcc.edu). All emails sent from within Blackboard will be delivered to your PGCC email address.

How do I - Working in the course environment

How to Add an Avatar to Your Personal Profile (read and view)

 An avatar is a personal image that you can use to represent yourself. Avatar images appear in the "My eLearning" page (Bb's home page), course Rosters, Discussion Boards, Blogs, Wikis, and Journals.

Avatars also display within Notifications Modules such as What's New, Needs Attention, To Do, and Alerts.

To Add an Avatar in Blackboard, please follow the steps below. 

Step 1: Locate the "Tools" Module ("My eLearning" page).

From the "My eLearning" page (the first page you see once you log in or click on the "My eLearning" link), look for the 'Tools' Module and click on "Personal Information". 

 
Step 2: Add your Avatar (image).

From the Personal Information page, click 'Personalize My Settings', select "Use custom avatar image", click on "Browse My Computer" to look for the image you wish to use, then click "Submit". 

 

 
Step 3: Look for your Avatar.

Your Avatar will appear on the top right corner of your screen next to your name. 

How to Clear Cache, Cookies, and History

How to Clear Cache, Cookies, and History (read it) 

How to hide or show your course list from the “My eLearning” tab

From the "My eLearning" page, you can change the way in which course information appears in the "My Courses" module. By checking or unchecking associated boxes, you can hide or show the course name, course ID, instructor names, announcements, tasks, and calendar events. Please follow these steps to make the changes. 

Note: Please follow the same steps to show or hide your courses from the "My Courses" page. 

Step 1: Locate the "My Courses" Module (from the My eLearning page).

From the "My eLearning" page (the first page you see once you log into Blackboard 9.1), select the pinwheel icon in the top right corner of the "My Courses" module.

Step 2: How to show or hide your course.

In the boxes under the columns for each item (Course Name, Course ID, Instructors, Announcements, Tasks and Calendar Events), check the box to show or uncheck to hide.

 
Step 3: Check your "My Courses" module to see the changes.

Once you have completed your choices for items to show or hide, click the Submit button.
When you return to the "My eLearning" page, you will see the changes you made under the "My Courses" module.

 

How to orient yourself in your course environment

How to select your course entry point and add a banner

How do I - Building Course Content

How to Add a Glossary Term
How to add content to a learning module

How to add instructor information
How to build a learning module

How to copy a course

As an instructor of a Blackboard course site, you can copy course materials from one Bb course site to another using the Course Copy tool located in the Control Panel.
Note: You must have instructor access to both courses in order to copy materials between the courses.

Important information for using the Course Copy Function
  1. You can only use this function to copy materials between courses that you have instructor access to.
  2. This tool is best used for copying entire areas from one course to another. An example of an "entire area" is all content behind a navigation button, entire grade book, all tests in test manager, etc.
  3. This tool is not useful for copying individual content items and assignments from one course to another.
  4. Be careful when selecting items to copy. The eLearning Services Office cannot correct any problems created by incorrect copying. The only solution is for the instructor to manually delete each item/area individually.
Once you have completed the steps below, the following will happen automatically:
  1. The request to copy content will be submitted. You will receive an email once the content has been copied. Do not access either course until the copy is complete. 
Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that has the content you want to copy

Select the course that has the content you want to copy. Typically, this is your previous semester course site.

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Course Copy"

You will access the "Copy Course" tool from the Control Panel under Packages and Utilities:

Step 3: Select "Copy Course Materials into an Existing Course"

When you are ready to copy the course materials, select "Copy Course Materials into an Existing Course" from the dropdown menu:

Note: You can only copy materials between courses in which you have instructor access.

Step 4a: Enter the Destination Course ID (the course you are copying into)

To enter the Destination Course ID, you can either TYPE in the course id, or you can BROWSE to search for the course.

Step 4b: Select the Content to Copy

Click the "Select All" button to select all the content contained in the course.
Uncheck "Announcements" to prevent the old announcements from copying over to your new section.
Uncheck "Quicklinks" to prevent duplicating the tools in Quicklinks.
Check the Discussion Board options:

  1. If you create the first thread in your forums for students to reply to, select the first option: Include Starter posts for each thread in each forum.
  2. If you do not create the first thread, select the second option: Include only the forum with no starter posts.
Step 5: Do not select "Manage Package Contents". Select correct copy link option. Click "Submit".

Note: You must click "Submit" to invoke the Course Copy process. If you do not want to complete the copy, click "Cancel".

List of Redesigned Courses:
  1. CJT-2510
  2. CJT-2540
  3. EGL-1010
  4. NTR-1010
  5. PAR-1510
  6. PAR-1550
  7. PAR-2540
  8. PSY-1010
  9. SOC-1010
  10. SPH-1010
How to copy a test from one-course site to another

As the instructor of a Blackboard course site, you can copy a Test from one course site to another without copying the entire course site.
The steps include Exporting and Importing a zip file.
(Note: You must have INSTRUCTOR access to both courses in order to copy materials between the courses.)

Export Test (Originating Course)

Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that contains the Test you want to copy

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Tests, Surveys, and Pools" (Under Course Tools)

Step 3: Select "Tests"

Step 4: Find the Test and click on the arrow next to it to access the Contextual Menu then, select "Export".

Select "Save File" to save the Blackboard zip file to your computer.

(Note: Make sure you know the name of the Exported file and where it is saved on your computer.
The name of the exported file is named in this format: Test_ExportFile_2014SU-NTR-1010-DL02_101midterm.zip


 

Import Test (Destination Course)

Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that you want to copy the Test into.

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Tests, Surveys, and Pools" (Under Course Tools)

Step 3: Select "Tests"

Step 4: Click on "Import Test".


Step 5: Click on "Browse My Computer" to find the Test you saved (zip file) on your computer.

 Then, click "Submit".

 

Step 6: You will receive a "Test Import Complete" page, click OK.

 The Test will show that it has been copied.

 

How to create a lesson plan

How to create a mashup
How to create a new test

How to create an announcement

The Announcements tool allows faculty to provide students with course reminders and updates. Announcements appear in the order posted with the most recent announcement appearing first.

Step 1. Turn Edit Mode "ON"

(found in the upper right corner of course window). 

Step 2. Click on the "Announcements" button.

 

Step 3. Click on "Create Announcement"

Step 4. Enter the Subject and Message of the Announcement.

Step 5: Enter the Date Restriction.

(If "Not Date Restricted", the announcement will always display. If you enter "Date Restricted", the announcement will only be displayed during that time period.

Step 6. Click Submit to post the Announcement.

Step 7: Your announcement will be displayed at the top of the Announcements page.

 

How to create an assignment
SafeAssign Plagiarism Tool is Now Integrated into Blackboard Assignments

SafeAssign is a plagiarism tool that is now integrated into regular Blackboard Learn Assignments. With the integration between SafeAssign and regular assignments, many of the regular assignment features are available with the SafeAssign service. Read below on how to create Blackboard Assignments with the option to use the SafeAssign with those assignments.

1. In your course, go into the Content Area

(ie, Course Content) where you want to add your Assignment. Click "Assessments".

 

2. Select "Assignment".

3. Enter the required fields (Name and select color palette).

If required, attach any files from your computer or from the Content Collection.

 

4. Scroll down to enter Due Dates and Points possible. 

If applicable, you can add an associated rubric.

5. Click on "Submission Details":

To check assignment submissions for plagiarism using the SafeAssign tool, click on Plagiarism Tools, and select options below.

6. Select "Grading Options". Click for any desired options:

7. Select "Display of Grades" 

to select which grading options to display to students.

8. Scroll down for "Availability" options.

Make the assignment available and enter dates to limit availability, if desired.

9. Click Submit.

You will receive a message, "Essay 1 Assignment created".


The Assignment will appear in your Content Area.

 

How to create different types of test questions
How to create discussion board forums

How to create, review and grade a SafeAssign assignment

How to download grade center and work offline

You can download the entire Grade Center, a particular Assignment, Grading Period, etc, and work offline to enter grades. You can then upload your changes to the Grade Center.

Download Grade Center to Work Offline

1. Go to the Grade Center. Select Work Offline.

 2. Click on the two down arrows in the Work Offline Box to bring up the dropdown menu, select Download.

3. You can select to download the Full Grade Center, a Selected Grading Period, a Selected Column or User Information. Here we are going to download a Selected Column to grade - Assignment 1. Under Options, Select the Delimiter Type of Tab and do not include Hiddin Information. Select My Computer for the Download location. Submit.

 4. Select the Download Grades button.

5. Select Save File. Your file will be saved to your default location.

6. Open the downloaded file. You may get a security warning like the one below. If so, select Yes. Enter the grades and save the file. You cannot change the format of the spreadsheet in any way or it will not upload back into the Grade Center properly.

 

7. Enter the Grades. When done entering Grades, save the changes.

 

 Upload Grades

1. Go back into your course in Blackboard and go into the Grade Center. Select Work Offline, then select Upload.

2. Select Browse to Attach local file. Change Delimiter Type to Tab. Submit

3. You will get an Upload Grades Confirmation screen. Submit 

4. Your grades will be uploaded to the Grade Center.

How to enroll a non-student user
Enroll Non-Student User using "Roster Manager"

There are now two options for faculty to enroll non-student users into their Blackboard courses. You can create a text file with the required information and email it to eLearning Services or you can use the "Roster Manager" tool described below. For instructions on how to create the text file, click here. To use the Roster Manager tool in Blackboard continue on this page.

The new "Roster Manager" tool in Blackboard is used for faculty to enroll non-student users into their Blackboard course(s). 

The available non-student roles are:

  1. Teaching Assistant – Appropriate for Library staff and other teaching assistants
  2. Grader – Appropriate for SAS Center staff (Bb id: sascenter)
  3. Course Reviewer – Appropriate for course reviewers such as department chair and QM course reviewers
  4. Instructor – Appropriate for anyone you want to have full access to the course
Important tips for using the Roster Manager Tool
  1. This tool is used to enroll non-student users into your course. This tool cannot be used to enroll students who do not appear on your Blackboard roster.
  2. You can use this tool to enroll users in the role of Course Reviewer, Teaching Assistant, Grader or Instructor.
  3. You MUST know the Owl Link/Blackboard userid of the person to be enrolled.  There is no option available to search for users by name.
  4. The user you want to enroll must have an existing account in Blackboard.
  5. The "Manage Enrollments" option allows you to remove users enrolled using the "Roster Manager" option only.
  6. The "Manage Enrollments" option allows you to change the non-student user role of a user enrolled using the "Enroll User" option.
How the Roster Manager Tool Works

Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that you want to enroll the user(s) into.

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Roster Manager" (Under Course Tools)

Step 3: Select "Enroll Users"

Step 4: Follow Instructions on the screen Note: You must know the Blackboard/Owl Link username of the person you are enrolling

Step 5: Click Submit when done

Once you have completed the steps above, the following will happen automatically:
  1. The user(s) will be enrolled in the course in the role selected.
Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that you want to enroll the user(s) into.

Select the course you want to enroll non-student users into. Typically, this is the course you want to add your department chair, colleagues, SAS Center, QM reviewers, or other non-student users you need to access your course.

MEC_3.JPG

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Roster Manager" under Course Tools

You will access the "Roster Manager" tool from the Control Panel under Course Tools:

Step 3: Select "Enroll Users"

When you are ready to enroll non-student users, select "Enroll Users" from the menu:

Step 4: Enter the UserID(s) of the persons you are enrolling

Note: You must know the Blackboard/Owl Link username of the person you are enrolling--there is no option for username lookup.

Press Enter or click on OK.

Select user(s) and click Submit.

Step 5: Select UserID(s) to Enroll and Course Role

Select the appropriate role for the UserIDs indicated in Step 4 above. 

  1. Teaching Assistant – Appropriate for Library staff and other teaching assistants
  2. Grader – Appropriate for SAS Center staff (Bb id: sascenter)
  3. Course Reviewer – Appropriate for course reviewers such as department chair and QM course reviewers
  4. Instructor - Appropriate for anyone you want to have full access to the course
Step 6: Select Course(s)

If you wish to enroll the users into more than one course, select multiple courses here.

Click Submit. You will receive the following receipt, click OK.

How to import a publisher test bank into Blackboard

How to manage groups
What are Blackboard groups?

A group is a subset of students enrolled in a Blackboard course. Each group gets its own workspace, where members may privately collaborate on projects, share files, and communicate via e-mail. Only Instructors, Teaching Assistants, and Course Builders may create groups.

Which tools are available for group members?

Instructors may choose any or all of the following tools to be made available to group members:

• Blogs (can be graded)

• Collaboration (chat room and virtual classroom)

• Discussion Board

• E-mail

• File Exchange

• Journals (can be graded)

• Tasks

• Wikis (can be graded)

Create groups and group projects

In older versions of Blackboard, instructors created blogs and wikis first, then added group members later. This is no longer the case! If you intend to use a blog, journal or wiki as a group project, you must create your groups FIRST.

There are several different ways to create groups, depending on how many you need to create, and how much control you want over membership.

1. Enter your course by clicking its name in the My Courses module.

2. Select Groups from the course menu OR Select Users and Groups > Groups from the Control Panel.

Create Single Groups:

On the Groups page, select Create Single Group, then your preferred group type.

Self-Enroll

Students may add themselves to this group by using a sign-up sheet. Instructors may set a maximum number of members.

Manual Enroll

Instructors must add students to this group. There is no limit to how many students can be added.

Both group types ask instructors to specify which tools to enable for members. If you want your group to have a blog or wiki, check the boxes on this page before clicking Submit! 

Create multiple groups at once

On the Groups page, select Create Group Set, then your preferred group type.

Self-Enroll

Students may add themselves to any group by using a sign-up sheet.

Instructors set a maximum number of members.

Manual Enroll

Once the groups are created, instructors may add students to each group.

Random Enroll

Blackboard will add students to your groups for you! If you have an uneven number of students, you may specify what to do with the remainder. If students are enrolled into the course after you have created a random enrolled group, you must manually enroll the newly enrolled students.

All group types ask instructors to specify which tools to enable for members. If you want your groups to have blogs or wikis, check the boxes on this page before clicking Submit!

Student-created groups

Instructors may allow students to create their own self-enroll groups. Once enrolled, students may edit the name, description and maximum capacity of the group. Instructors must enable this feature first before students can use it. While creating a group, if you select "Allow Personalization", students can create self-enroll groups and add modules to their group space (Only the student will be able to see the modules that they added to their group space). Another way to allow students to create groups is:

1. On the Groups page, select Group Settings.

2. Check the first box to allow students to create self-enrolled groups.

3. Check the second box to allow students to edit their groups.

4. Click Submit.

By default, student-created groups include all tools listed at the beginning of this documents. Students cannot control which tools are available. Only instructors can disable unneeded group tools.

1. On the groups page, click the down-pointing arrow button to the right of the group and select Edit.

2. Uncheck the boxes for the tools you wish to disable, then click Submit.

Access and contact groups

Instructors, Teaching Assistants and Course Builders have access to all groups. Students only have access to groups they've been enrolled in.

Anyone can select Groups from the course menu. Students will also see a submenu listing their groups beneath the course menu.

If a self-enroll group has space available, students may add themselves by clicking Sign Up on the Groups page.

Instructors may contact any group easily by selecting the down-pointing arrow to the right of a group name, then selecting Email. Compose your e-mail, then click Submit.

If the Email tool is enabled in the group, students can also contact group members by going into the group and selecting Send Email.

 

How to request to merge courses

The "Merge Course Enrollment" tool in Blackboard is used for faculty teaching multiple sections of the same course who wish to use one Bb course site for the multiple sections. This tool allows the Blackboard system administrator to merge enrollments into a single Blackboard course site rather than maintaining multiple sites for multiple sections of the same course. Please note, once the sections are merged, students will ONLY have access to the 'parent' Blackboard course site.

Note: You can only merge courses being taught in the same semester.

How the Merge Course Enrollment Tool Works

Once you have completed the merge course enrollment request described below and your courses have been merged by eLearning Services, the following will happen automatically:

  1. All students will be added to the Parent Course
  2. The Blackboard course sites where students were merged from (child course) will be made unavailable to students.
  3. Students that registered for the child course, will continue to see the name of the child course but when entering the course, sees the content from the 'parent' course. Because of this, the parent course is no longer renamed with a _MERGE in the name.

 

The Gradebook:

  1. In the gradebook (of the parent course), a column entitled "Child Course" will be added. This column contains the course ID of the course the student was merged from. This will help you reconcile the merged Blackboard roster against the individual course rosters.
    Note: Students with nothing listed in the "Child Course" column are the students originally registered for the Parent Course.
    Tip: If you order the gradebook by the "Child Course" column, the students will be grouped by the course they originally registered for.
How to Submit a "Merge Course Enrollment" Request

Log into Blackboard. You can also go directly to https://ask.pgcc.edu and submit a Service Ticket (Search for "Course Merge", select "Blackboard Setup")

From the My eLearning tab, you will see the following 'Merge Course Enrollment Request' module.

Step 1: Click on the link for the Merge Course Enrollment request form. 

Merge Course Request form

 

Step 2. If you are not already logged into askPGCC, you will get the login screen. Enter your PGCC email address and password. Select Sign in.

askPGCC Login

Step 3: Fill out the Course Merge Service Request by selecting "Request Service".
askPGCC Request Form

Step 3. You will be redirected to the Merge Course enrollment request form in askPGCC.

Enter fields in Merge Form

Enter the Course ID of the Main/Parent section (the course that will have all of the content in it).

Also, name the Course ID of any child course sections.

Click REQUEST.

You will receive an email with a copy of your service request. You will receive another email when your request has been completed.

Step 4. If you go into edit the child course, you will see a notification at the top of the screen that says this course is the unavailable child course. Any modifications to this course will not be seen by students.

This course is unavailable message

 

How to use date management
How to use student preview

You can now view your course as a student without having to log out and log back in using a test student account. The Student Preview feature provides the capability for an instructor to see the course exactly as a student would see it. It accomplishes this by allowing the Instructor to easily transition into and out of a system-managed preview account that is automatically enrolled in the course as a student. This provides all the advantages of a "dummy" account while absolving the instructor and System Administrator of the management overhead.

 

Enter into Student Preview

To be able to view your course as your students will view it, follow these instructions:

 

1. Click the image in the upper right hand corner of your course next to "Edit Mode" (Edit Mode can be on or off).

Click Image

 

2. You will see an orange bar with the message "Entering Student Preview". This may take a minute.

entering student preview

 

3. Once you have entered "Student Preview" mode, you will see the orange bar at the top of your course saying "Student Preview is ON". Once you are in Student Preview, you are actually logged in with a student "preview" account. You can take tests, submit assignments, etc. as a student and will only have access to content that is available to all students.

Preview is on

 

4. Click "Exit Preview" to exit student preview and return to your user account.

click exit

 

5. Once you click "Exit Preview", you will get the following screen. Here you have the option to select either "Delete the preview user and all data (Recommended)", which will remove the 'preview student' and any data that was added while in student preview mode, or you can select "Keep the preview user and all data", which will keep any content added while in student preview, which means if you took a test or submitted an assignment while in "Student Preview", that content will remain and you can go grade or view it in the Grade Center as the instructor. Click "Continue" to exit student preview.

 

exit

6. You will then see "Exiting Student Preview" and return to your instructor account.

exiting

How to use the content editor

How do I - Grade Center

Creating a rubric for grading student work

How to create a grade center column (read it)

You can manually create a Grade Center Column to enter grades for assignments graded. 

Step 1: Turn Edit Mode "ON"

(found in upper right corner of course window). 

 Step 2. Click the "Grade Center" option

in the Control Panel of your course.

 Step 3. Select "Full Grade Center"

Step 4. Select "Create Column"

 

Step 5. Enter Column Name and Points Possible

(total points for the assignment). Scroll down.

Step 6. Enter Due Date (optional).

Step 7. Click Submit

Your Grade Column will be added as the last column in the Grade Center.

How to grade using a rubric

How to manually add items to the Grade Center
How to use grade details to see attempts and assign grades

Blackboard Teaching and Tools

Blackboard Collaborate Ultra (inside of Bb)

Blackboard Collaborate is a comprehensive online learning and collaboration tool designed specifically for education. It is already part of your Blackboard courses. With Blackboard Collaborate, you can create virtual classrooms, offices, and meeting spaces that open more possibilities for effective learning experiences and interactions for online, blended, and mobile learning. 

Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience opens right in your browser, so you don't have to install any software to join a session. Host one-on-one sessions, lectures, group presentations, and study sessions from one virtual room. Google Chrome is the best browser to use with Collaborate Ultra.

Note: The Blackboard Course Room will no longer be available under the Blackboard Collaborate link in your course. The Course Room will only be available under the Blackboard Collaborate Ultra link.

See the below askPGCC Knowledge Articles on steps how to: 

For 24/7 Bb Collaborate support for you and your students, you can call 1-888-788-5264. Select Option #3 (If are an instructor or student in need of support for Collaborate), then select #2 for Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience. 


Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience provides a single room for your course that stays open for the life of your course. It is turned on by default. 

  

In Blackboard, faculty can:
  • Schedule and deliver classes using Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing capabilities, including shared whiteboards, public/private chat, breakout rooms, application/desktop sharing, polling, file transfer, and PowerPoint import.
  • Create sessions easily.
  • Hold virtual office hours, tutoring sessions, meetings, and more in your course room.
  • Automatically assign student grades (via the Grade Center) for attending a live session. A session attendance report is available for each session that gives you an overview of when participants joined and left your sessions. This feature will be available after our May 2020 upgrade.
  • Easily convert session recordings to MP3/MP4 formats for streaming or downloading to desktop or any mobile device.
Blackboard course copy

As an instructor of a Blackboard course site, you can copy course materials from one Bb course site to another using the Course Copy tool located in the Control Panel.
Note: You must have instructor access to both courses in order to copy materials between the courses.

Important information for using the Course Copy Function
  1. You can only use this function to copy materials between courses that you are have instructor access to.
  2. This tool is best used for copying entire areas from one course to another. An example of an "entire area" is all content behind a navigation button, entire gradebook, all tests in test manager, etc.
  3. This tool is not useful for copying individual content items and assignments from one course to another.
  4. Be careful when selecting items to copy. The eLearning Services Office cannot correct any problems created by incorrect copying. The only solution is for the instructor to manually delete each item/area individually.
How to Copy Course Materials

Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that has the content you want to copy

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Course Copy" (Under Packages and Utilities)

Step 3: Select "Copy Course Materials into an Existing Course"

Step 4: Follow Instructions on the screen to indicate the following:

a. Enter the Destination Course ID (to copy materials to)
b. Select the Content to Copy

Step 5: Click Submit when done

Once you have completed the steps above, the following will happen automatically:

  1. The request to copy content will be submitted. You will receive an email once the content has been copied. DO NOT ACCESS EITHER COURSE UNTIL THE COPY IS COMPLETE.
Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that has the content you want to copy

Select the course that has the content you want to copy. Typically, this is your previous semester course site.

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Course Copy"

You will access the "Copy Course" tool from the Control Panel under Packages and Utilities:

Step 3: Select "Copy Course Materials into an Existing Course"

When you are ready to copy the course materials, select "Copy Course Materials into an Existing Course" from the dropdown menu:

 

Step 4: Follow Instructions on the screen

Note: You can only copy materials between courses in which you have instructor access.

Step 4a: Enter the Destination Course ID (the course you are copying into)

To enter the Destination Course ID, you can either TYPE in the course id, or you can BROWSE to search for the course.

Step 4b: Select the Content to Copy

Click the "Select All" button to select all the content contained in the course.
Uncheck "Announcements" to prevent the old announcements from copying over to your new section.
Uncheck "Quicklinks" to prevent duplicating the tools in Quicklinks.
Check the Discussion Board options:

  1. If you create the first thread in your forums for students to reply to, select the first option: Include Starter posts for each thread in each forum.
  2. If you do not create the first thread, select the second option: Include only the forum with no starter posts.

For a complete description of each area below, click here.


Step 5: Do not select "Manage Package Contents". Select correct copy link option. Click "Submit".

Note: You must click "Submit" to invoke the Course Copy process. If you do not want to complete the copy, click "Cancel".

Blogs, journals, and wikis

Blogs, Journals, and Wikis can be used for self-reflection, collaboration, and communication. Blogs and Journals give students the opportunity to share and construct knowledge. Students can benefit from comments from peers and the instructor as they interact, collaborate and share information, resources, opinions, and ideas. Wikis are a page or set of pages, that can be collaboratively edited by the instructor and by the students enrolled in the class.

What are Blogs, Journals, and Wikis?

Blogs are chronological posts from one or more people, meaning entries are entered and displayed by date of entry. Replies can only be made through side comments. Blogs are group-based either with smaller groups or the entire class contributing to the blog. Journals are private reflections and writings by one person.  Another term for journal is "diary". Journals are private to the student and the instructor but can be made public. Wikis allow students to add content to a Blackboard course web site. Students can edit and add pages, images, and links. A log of all changes is kept, so it is easy to keep track of a given page's editorial history, and of students' editing activity.

Getting Started with Blackboard Blogs
Getting Started with Blackboard Blogs

A Blog—a shorthand term that means Web log—is a personal online journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public viewing. Each Blog entry can include any combination of text, images, links, multimedia, Mashups, and attachments. Blogs encourage students to clearly express their ideas and addresses the need to expand various aspects of social learning. Blogs are an effective means of gaining insight into students' activities and provide a way to share the knowledge and materials collected. In Blackboard Learn, only enrolled users can view and author Blogs. The owner of the Blog creates multiple entries over a period of time and the instructor and course members can add comments. A Blog can also be owned by the course or a Group. In the Group area, all members of a Group can create entries for the same Blog, building upon one another. Any course member can read and comment on a Group Blog, but cannot make entries if not a member of the group. Watch the videos below to learn how to create, edit, and comment on blogs.

Getting Started with Blackboard Journals
Getting Started with Blackboard Journals

Journals is a self-reflective tool that allows students to post their personal reflections about the course or discuss and analyze course related materials. Students have the opportunity for personalized and private conversations with the instructor or Group members. Journal assignments can help students make connections between their experiences as they create meaning and internalize learning. Watch the videos below to learn how to create a journal and comment on journal entries.

INTELECOM video repository

The INTELECOM Online Resources Network ™ is a hosted and supported digital repository and subscription database of academic video clips - streamed on demand - for use in support of online, hybrid and face-to-face classes.  The variety of video collections include Biological Sciences, Oceanography, History, Philosophy, Psychology, Political Science, Sociology, Health, and Environmental Studies with new content being added on an ongoing basis.

INTELECOM video clips can be accessed from both within and outside of your Blackboard course.  Click here for instructions on how to add content in Blackboard.  Contact eLearning for information on how to access Intelecom outside of Blackboard.  

Features
  • Content + Hosting - Fully hosted and supported academic video on demand.
  • Core Curriculum - Curated collection of streaming video clips in core academic disciplines.
  • Video Learning Objects - More than 3,000 topic-specific clips averaging 3 to 5 minutes in length.
  • Innovative Search - Search for content organized by academic discipline, course, or topic.
  • Faculty Tools - Preview video, embed links, post comments and rate clips.
  • Single Sign On - Referrer URL and IP authentication supports seamless integration with campus networks.
  • Integrated Search - Keyword search integration Blackboard and SoftChalk.
  • Exportable Lists - Export clip lists sorted by discipline and course.
  • My Clips - Create your own playlist accounts for tagging and saving search results.
  • ADA Compliance (508) - Closed-captioned video clips for hearing-impaired and limited English-proficient learners.
  • Cross-Compatibility - Stream content to the desktop or mobile devices (e.g. Smartphone, iPad).
  • MARC Records - MARC records in AACR2 format for all video collections.
  • 24/7 ACCESS - Enjoy anytime, anywhere access to all licensed content.
  • Usage Statistics - On-demand report generator allows administrators to track usage by discipline and by clip.
  • Help Center - Access to easy-to-understand tutorials using the online help center.
Content Collections

Each INTELECOM content collection offers a comprehensive selection of video clips covering a range of key concepts and topics within an academic discipline.

Adult Basic Education
Geography
Allied Health
Health
Anatomy
History
Anthropology
Linguistics
Biological Sciences
Medicine
Business
Nursing
Chemistry
Oceanography
Civic Education
Philosophy
Computer Science
Physical Education
Earth Sciences
Physics
Economics
Political Science
Education
Psychology
Environmental Studies
Religion
Ethnic Studies
Sociology
Family and Consumer Science
Urban Studies

Technical Support
Merge enrollments

The "Merge Course Enrollment" tool in Blackboard is used for faculty teaching multiple sections of the same course who wish to use one Bb course site for the multiple sections. This tool allows the Blackboard system administrator to merge enrollments into a single Blackboard course site rather than maintaining multiple sites for multiple sections of the same course. Please note, once the sections are merged, students will ONLY have access to the 'parent' Blackboard course site.

Note: You can only merge courses being taught in the same semester.

How the Merge Course Enrollment Tool Works

Once you have completed the merge course enrollment request described below and your courses have been merged by eLearning Services, the following will happen automatically:

  1. All students will be added to the Parent Course
  2. The Blackboard course sites where students were merged from (child course) will be made unavailable to students.
  3. Students that registered for the child course, will continue to see the name of the child course but when entering the course, sees the content from the 'parent' course. Because of this, the parent course is no longer renamed with a _MERGE in the name. 

The Gradebook:

  1. In the gradebook (of the parent course), a column entitled "Child Course" will be added. This column contains the course ID of the course the student was merged from. This will help you reconcile the merged Blackboard roster against the individual course rosters.
    Note: Students with nothing listed in the "Child Course" column are the students originally registered for the Parent Course.
    Tip: If you order the gradebook by the "Child Course" column, the students will be grouped by the course they originally registered for.
How to Submit a "Merge Course Enrollment" Request

Log into Blackboard. You can also go directly to https://ask.pgcc.edu and submit a Service Ticket (Search for "Course Merge", select "Blackboard Setup")

From the My eLearning tab, you will see the following 'Merge Course Enrollment Request' module.

Step 1: Click on the link for the Merge Course Enrollment request form. 

Step 2: If you are not already logged into askPGCC, you will get the login screen. Enter your PGCC email address and password. Select Sign in.

Step 3: Fill out the Course Merge Service Request by selecting "Request Service".

Step 3. You will be redirected to the Merge Course enrollment request form in askPGCC.

Enter the Course ID of the Main/Parent section (the course that will have all of the content in it).

Also, name the Course ID of any child course sections.

Click REQUEST.

You will receive an email with a copy of your service request. You will receive another email when your request has been completed.

Step 4. If you go into edit the child course, you will see a notification at the top of the screen that says this course is the unavailable child course. Any modifications to this course will not be seen by students.

 

Other Content Area Descriptions
AreaDescriptionWhen to Copy
Adaptive Release Rules for Content Content Item Only if you set this up in your previous course
Announcements Announcements Area Typically never. Only if you want to have old Bb announcements in your new course.
Blackboard Collaborate (Voice Authoring, Voice Board, Voice Podcaster, Voice Presentation) Tools Area Only if you setup the Blackboard Collaborate in your previous course
Blogs Blog Area Only if you retain sessions created in the previous course
Calendar Calendar Area Only if you setup the Calendar in your previous course
Collaboration Sessions Virtual Classroom & Chat Areas (NOT Wimba sessions) Only if want to retain sessions created in your previous course
Contacts (Faculty Info) Staff Information ALWAYS
Content Alignments Content Item ALWAYS
Discussion Board Staff Information ALWAYS
Early Warning System Rules Early Warning System (EWS) Settings Only if you have established EWS rules within your previous Bb course
Glossary Glossary Area Only if you setup the course Glossary within your previous course
Grade Center Columns and Settings Gradecenter ALWAYS
Group Settings Groups Only if you use the "Groups" in your previous course
Journals Journal Area Only if you retain sessions from your previous course
Retention Center Evaluation Area Only if you used Retention Center in your previous course
Rubrics Rubrics Only if you used Rubrics in your previous course
Settings

Course Settings (i.e., Availability, Banner Image, Language Pack, etc.)

 

ALWAYS
Tasks Task Area Only if you setup tasks in your previous course
Tests, Surveys, and Pools Test Manager ALWAYS
Wikis Wikis Only if you used wiki's in your previous course 
Roster manager
Enroll Non-Student User using "Roster Manager"

There are now two options for faculty to enroll non-student users into their Blackboard courses. You can create a text file with the required information and email it to eLearning Services or you can use the "Roster Manager" tool described below. For instructions on how to create the text file, click here. To use the Roster Manager tool in Blackboard continue on this page.

The new "Roster Manager" tool in Blackboard is used for faculty to enroll non-student users into their Blackboard course(s). 

The available non-student roles are:

  1. Teaching Assistant – Appropriate for Library staff and other teaching assistants
  2. Grader – Appropriate for SAS Center staff (Bb id: sascenter)
  3. Course Reviewer – Appropriate for course reviewers such as department chair and QM course reviewers
  4. Instructor – Appropriate for anyone you want to have full access to the course
Important tips for using the Roster Manager Tool
  1. This tool is used to enroll non-student users into your course. This tool cannot be used to enroll students who do not appear on your Blackboard roster.
  2. You can use this tool to enroll users in the role of Course Reviewer, Teaching Assistant, Grader, or Instructor.
  3. You MUST know the Owl Link/Blackboard userid of the person to be enrolled.  There is no option available to search for users by name.
  4. The user you want to enroll must have an existing account in Blackboard.
  5. The "Manage Enrollments" option allows you to remove users enrolled using the "Roster Manager" option only.
  6. The "Manage Enrollments" option allows you to change the non-student user role of a user enrolled using the "Enroll User" option.

Once you have completed the steps, the following will happen automatically:

  1. The user(s) will be enrolled in the course in the role selected. 
Step 1: Open the Blackboard Course site that you want to enroll the user(s) into.

Select the course you want to enroll non-student users into. Typically, this is the course you want to add your department chair, colleagues, SAS Center, QM reviewers, or other non-student users you need to access your course.

Step 2: Go to the Control Panel and select "Roster Manager" under Course Tools

You will access the "Roster Manager" tool from the Control Panel under Course Tools.

Step 3: Select "Enroll Users" 

When you are ready to enroll non-student users, select "Enroll Users" from the menu. 

Step 4: Enter the UserID(s) of the persons you are enrolling

Note: You must know the Blackboard/Owl Link username of the person you are enrolling--there is no option for username lookup.

Press Enter or click on OK.

Select user(s) and click Submit.

Step 5: Select UserID(s) to Enroll and Course Role

Select the appropriate role for the UserIDs indicated in Step 4 above. For information on Course Roles, click here. 

  1. Teaching Assistant – Appropriate for Library staff and other teaching assistants
  2. Grader – Appropriate for SAS Center staff (Bb id: sascenter)
  3. Course Reviewer – Appropriate for course reviewers such as department chair and QM course reviewers
  4. Instructor - Appropriate for anyone you want to have full access to the course
Step 6: Select Course(s)

If you wish to enroll the users into more than one course, select multiple courses here.

Click Submit. You will receive the following receipt, click OK.

SafeAssign
What is SafeAssign?

SafeAssign is a plagiarism prevention service offered by Blackboard.  This service helps educators prevent plagiarism by detecting unoriginal content in student papers.  In addition to acting as a plagiarism deterrent, it also has features designed to aid in educating students about plagiarism and the importance of proper attribution of any borrowed content. 

SafeAssign is now integrated into regular Blackboard Learn assignments. With the integration between SafeAssign and regular assignments, almost all of the regular assignment features are available with the SafeAssign service.

For more information, see:

The SafeAssign originality report has been changed in the following ways:

  • The report has been updated with a new look and feel. The report now displays multiple attachments.
  • The email option has been removed. While viewing the report, you can "print to pdf" either natively or using a plug-in based on the operating system and browser combination that you are using to create an accessible PDF. Then, you can share the PDF in multiple ways, including secure email.
  • Each source now has a color unique to the source. Text matching the source is highlighted in the unique source color. There are a maximum of 30 different colors. This matches the maximum of 30 different sources.
  • By default, all citation source highlighting is on. Instructors can click Show/Hide All Highlighting to turn source highlighting off and on for all sources at once.
  • The report layout has been improved for narrow screens. The report information and citations now appear at the top of the submission when instructors reduce the width of the viewing area.
  • Instructors click Select Sources and Resubmit to determine which sources they want to include in the next report. By default, all sources are included. Instructors can clear the check box for each source to exclude from the results. This behavior is the reverse of previous releases.
  • The page instructors are redirected to after resubmitting a paper has been updated to be more in line with the styling of the new report.
Copying or Moving SafeAssignments to another course:

Why doesn't my SafeAssignment work after a course copy?
After performing a course copy or moving an individual SafeAssignment to another course, you may have to perform an additional step to activate the SafeAssignment in the new course.

  • In the Control Panel, select Course Tools.
  • Click SafeAssign.
  • On the SafeAssign screen, click SafeAssign Items.
  • On the SafeAssignments screen, click the Synchronize this Course button on the far right. This will establish the link between the SafeAssignment and the Central SafeAssign server
  • You will see a notice, "Please wait. This course is being synchronized with SafeAssign. The page will load as soon as the synchronization is over."
  • You will be brought back to the SafeAssign Items screen.

The synchronize function deals with breaks in communication or has been copied. Don't be afraid to periodically click the "Synchronize this course" button if any course level issues arise. By synchronizing, you can ensure the correct associations exist between the course and the SafeAssign central database.

SoftChalk

SoftChalk is a lesson building application that can be used to create, customize and personalize course content by using your own content and including rich media (video, audio, images), interactive exercises, quizzes and text. The application runs on both Windows and Macintosh computers.  You can easily publish your SoftChalk content into your Blackboard course and integrate it with the Blackboard Grade Center.  You can also share your Activities, Quiz Groups and Lessons or find content to use in your course on the SoftChalk CONNECT website. 

You can create:

  • interactive learning games, including customizable flashcards, image labeling, image hotspot activities, matching games, crosswords and more.
  • six question types: multiple choice, multiple answer (more than one correct answer), short answer, true/false, matching, and ordering.
  • pop-up text annotations to define terminology, or enhance the interactivity of your lesson content.
How Do I Get This Software?

You must be an employee of Prince George's Community College to download SoftChalk. There are two locations where you can access the download files, either from the portal or from Blackboard. Follow the instructions below: After downloading and installing Softchalk, visit the SoftChalk website for a wealth of useful information including video tutorials, a variety of live webinar offerings and free short courses.

      1. Portal: When accessing from the portal, you will get a login screen if you are not currently logged into the my.pgcc.edu portal. Once you login, you will see the "Software Options for PGCC Employees" web page. Scroll down the page to find SoftChalk listed under "Home or College Use". Click on SoftChalk to go to the SoftChalk download page. Click here to access the "Software Options for PGCC Employees" page in the PGCC Portal.
      2. Blackboard: Log into Blackboard and click on the tab titled "Getting Started with Bb9 for Faculty" located on the "My eLearning" tab.

From this tab, you will see a "SoftChalk" module with a link to the SoftChalk download page. Click on the link and follow the instructions on the SoftChalk download page. Click here to access Blackboard.

For more help with Softchalk:

      • Visit the SoftChalk Support Center or e-mail them at help@softchalk.com if you need assistance installing SoftChalk, entering your license key, using SoftChalk or uploading your SoftChalk lesson to your Blackboard Course. At the SoftChalk Support Center, please notice the Installation and License Key FAQ folders at the left.
      • Within the SoftChalk application, see Help/Help Topics for a searchable User Guide, integration guides for various learning management systems, FAQs and links to sign up for free training.
SoftChalk Share

SoftChalk Share (http://softchalk.com/products/share/) is an Open Education Resource, learning object repository with thousands of free learning materials, created by educators. SoftChalk users have created SoftChalk content (lessons and activities) that they are sharing on this website. The SoftChalk Share website is available to the public for getting web-based Reusable Learning Objects (OERs) that can be used in web pages and SoftChalk lessons. In other words, the public can copy and paste the embed code or hyperlink for these objects and no account is required. You can share content on this site as well as find content to use in your course

Test generator from Word document
WIKIS

A Wiki is a collection of web pages that allow users to add and edit content collectively. Wikis can be set up for groups of students or for the entire course.

Important Resources

Open textbooks
Technology discount program

Technology discount program Purchase various technology items including mobile repair services and textbooks at a discounted price.

eFaculty Technical Support

Blackboard known issues

The "Browse My YouTube Videos" tool in the Content Editor does not work. When you click on the tool, you will get a screen to "Sign in to YouTube". When you click on it, it doesn't go anywhere. 

Recommend to your students to use the Mashups tool when embedding YouTube videos.

Issue: Empty Files Submitted to Assignments and Content Collection for Microsoft Windows 10 Edge Users

Impacts: All Faculty users attempting to upload course content and all Student users attaching files for Assignment submissions.

Description: 
Files selected for Assignment submissions and Course Content become replaced with an empty file if a user of Microsoft Windows 10 and Edge browser has opened and closed the file after selection and before submission.

Reason: This is a known issue in our current version of Blackboard 9.1, April 2014 Release.

Workaround #1:

  • Do not open the source file after selecting it for upload into Blackboard Learn.  Users should be advised to open files for inspection before uploading/attaching the files to the assignment link in Blackboard Learn.

Workaround #2:

  • Do not use the Edge browser. Use a different browser such as Chrome or Firefox.

Best Practice Info: Blackboard recommends that customers communicate this known issue and workaround suggestions to those end-users operating with Microsoft Windows 10 Edge browsers.

Solution: There is no patch available for our current version. The target release: Future Reference

Issue: Videos, images, and other media do not display within the Blackboard page

Impacts: All Blackboard users

Description: 
Video and other unsecured content do not display within Blackboard or open as a blank page.

Example: 
Students and faculty open a Blackboard page that should display a video, an image, or other unsecure media and the item does not display on the page. 

Reason: 
The Firefox and Chrome web browsers have changed the way they handle unsecure content on secure websites.  Since Blackboard is a secure website, these browsers no longer allow unsecure content such as videos, images, and other media pulled from an unsecure website without the user’s knowledge.

Workaround:
  The security settings on Firefox and Chrome must be adjusted to allow “mixed content” to display within the web browser.
Solution: Follow the instructions below based on the web browser you are using. See both Firefox and Chrome workaround below.

Issue: Inline Grading for Assignments times out after 30 minutes.

Impacts: Faculty using inline grading and taking up to 30 minutes per student before saving the grade.

Description: When grading a student assignment in the grade center inline grading option, if you take close to 30 minutes to grade one student's paper without saving, you may get kicked back to the full grade center with an error message saying “The requested page could not be displayed. Please try again. If this continues, please contact your system administrator for assistance.” Your work will be saved and you can go back in and continue grading the student's assignment.

Reason: Blackboard says this is working as intended and does so because as you are grading – until you actually save it, all of your changes are taking up memory. The time out feature takes effect after 30 minutes so performance is not negatively affected. 

Workaround: For assignments taking an extended time to grade, save the graded information and then continue.

Blackboard outages
A log of scheduled and unscheduled Blackboard outages at Prince George's Community College is listed below. Engineers at Blackboard have regularly scheduled maintenance windows every Friday from 2:00 am to 6:00 am EST. Intermittent outages may or may not be experienced at those times.  
Date Type Time Duration Notes
04/03/20 (Fri) Outage 9:45 am - 11:37 am 1 hr 52 min Bb Outage
01/11/20 (Sat) Outage 3:30 am - 8:06 am 4 hr 36 min Bb Upgrade, CU9
10/16/19 (Wed) Outage 2:55 pm - 3:15 pm 20 min Bb Outage
10/7/19 (Mon) Outage 5:40 pm - 6:45 pm 1 hr 5 min Bb DNS issue
9/19/19 (Thur) Outage 6:25 pm - 7:11 pm 46 min Outage
6/12/19 (Wed) Outage 12:30 am - 8:30 am 8 hours Bb Security Maintenance
5/19/19 (Sun) Outage 12:30am - 1:00pm 12 hr 30 mins Bb upgrade to Q4 2018
Blackboard supported browsers

The Firefox and Chrome web browsers have changed the way they handle unsecure content on secure websites. Since Blackboard is a secure website, unsecure content such as videos, images and other media pulled from an unsecure website will not be displayed in Firefox or Chrome without the user acknowledging there is unsecure content and 'allowing' it to be displayed. See below for information on how to 'acknowledge' this content and allow it to be displayed.

BROWSER RECOMMENDATION: It is recommended that either Firefox or Chrome is used with Blackboard. If you have the option to download the Add-On in Firefox (Option 1 below), this would be the recommended option. Keeping in mind the new security features in Firefox and Chrome, there may be instances where something does not work in one browser, but may work in the other. Because of this inconsistency, eLearning does not recommend one of these browsers over the other if the Add-On is not an option. Read below for information to help guide you through the new security features in Firefox and Chrome.

Note: Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge have inconsistent issues with Blackboard and are not recommended browsers. We strongly advise not to use Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge unless you come across the rare instance that something is not working in either Firefox or Chrome.

DOWNLOADS:

Click here to download Chrome

Click here to download Firefox

Chrome workarounds

A security "Shield" is displayed in the right corner of the address bar when content is blocked from being displayed. Click on the shield to unblock the content. See below for instructions. You will have to repeat this every time unsecure content is displayed.

If the content is being blocked while you are in Chrome, a security 'shield' will be displayed. Look at the right end of the address bar at the top of your screen.  You should see a shield icon (see below): 

 

 

1.   Click on the shield icon.

 

2.   A message box will open, stating, “This page includes script from unauthenticated sources.”. Click on “Load unsafe script.”

 

3.  You may get a screen that asks if you want to "Leave This Page".  If you get this screen, select "LeaveThis Page".

Clear my cache
Tech tips for faculty
Workaround 1 - Firefox

There are two workarounds for Firefox: You can install an Add-On, which is the recommended option (Option 1) or click on the shield icon (Option 2) on the web page to disable blocking.

Option 1:
1. Install an add-on that enables you to quickly turn on/off the mixed content blocking feature. It is recommended that you turn the feature on when entering Blackboard and turn it back off when you log out of Blackboard. The "A" should be red when in Blackboard and green when you log out of Blackboard. See "Workaround 1" below for instructions.
Workaround 1: Install an add-on* 

1.  Click the following link to install the add-on: 

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-us/firefox/addon/toggle-mixed-active-content/

You will be presented with a Mozilla website that should look like this:

Firefox Addon

2.  Click the + Add to Firefox button to install the add-on to Firefox.

3.  You may be presented with a pop-up security message.  It is OK to click ALLOW.  This will begin the install process.

Firefox Prevented

4.  The Add-on will download.

download

5.  You will be asked if you want to install the add-on.  Click INSTALL NOW.

firefox

6.  You should receive a pop-up window that explains the add-on has been installed successfully.  You can close this pop-up.

Toggle

7.  The toggle switch is now embedded in the lower right corner of the Firefox Browser frame.  The switch is the letter A.  If it is GREEN, your browser is set to block mixed content.  This may prevent you from accessing some content in Blackboard.  Click the letter A in the lower right corner to toggle the setting from green to red (on to off).

toggle switch

8.  If the switch is RED, your browser is set to allow mixed content.  This will allow you to access the content in Blackboard.  If you want to turn the setting back ON, click the letter A in the lower right corner to toggle the setting from red to green (off to on).

red

9.  You may need to reload the Blackboard page once you click the switch to turn the mixed content warning to OFF (red).  Click the link that previously showed a blank page, and the content should now appear.

10. If you do not see the A at the bottom of your screen, do the following:
• View > Toolbars > Add-on Bar

• This will display the footer bar in the bottom right corner of the browser window

• In the footer bar, click the green “A” to make it red to display mixed content

*Source: Oberlin Center for Technologically Enhanced Teaching

 

Workaround 2 - Firefox

There are two workarounds for Firefox: You can install an Add-On, which is the recommended option (Option 1), or click on the shield icon (Option 2) on the web page to disable blocking.

Option 2:

1. Install an add-on that enables you to quickly turn on/off the mixed content blocking feature. It is recommended that you turn the feature on when entering Blackboard and turn it back off when you log out of Blackboard. The "A" should be red when in Blackboard and green when you log out of Blackboard. See "Workaround 1" below for instructions.

2. Look for and click on the "shield" icon to disable blocking. This option will refresh the page after clicking the shield so Option 1 is recommended when taking an assessment.

 

Workaround 2: "Shield" Icon

Click here to view video

1. While content is being blocked, look at the left end of the address bar at the top of your screen.  You should see a shield icon: 

Ff shield

2.   If you see this icon, click on it. A message box will open like the one below. At the bottom right corner, click on the drop-down menu where it says “Keep Blocking”.

Blocked Content
3. Select “Disable Protection on this Page”. In most cases, the content should then be displayed. If not, continue to next step. 

Disable Protection

4.  If you get the following message, click “Leave Page”.  

Leave page

5.   After you select Leave Page, there will be a red icon where the shield was in the upper left corner of the URL address.  Click on this icon, then click on Activate. 

Activate Plug In

Workarounds - Chrome

Workaround:  A security "Shield" is displayed in the right corner of the address bar when content is blocked from being displayed. Click on the shield to unblock the content. See below for instructions. You will have to repeat this every time unsecure content is displayed.


If content is being blocked while you are in Chrome, a security 'shield' will be displayed. Look at the right end of the address bar at the top of your screen.  You should see a shield icon (see below): 
chromeShield

 

1.   Click on the shield icon.


2.   A message box will open, stating, “This page includes script from unauthenticated sources.”. Click on “Load unsafe script.”
Load Unsafe Content


3.  You may get a screen that asks if you want to "Leave This Page".  If you get this screen, select "LeaveThis Page".
Leave Page

Be Social and Connect

Stay in the loop with PGCC news and information and connect with PGCC through:

Blogs, journals, and wikis

Blogs, Journals and Wikis can be used for self-reflection, collaboration and communication. Blogs and Journals give students the opportunity to share and construct knowledge. Students can benefit from comments from peers and the instructor as they interact, collaborate, and share information, resources, opinions, and ideas. Wikis are a page or set of pages, that can be collaboratively edited by the instructor and by the students enrolled in the class.

What are Blogs, Journals and Wikis?

Blogs are chronological posts from one or more people, meaning entries are entered and displayed by date of entry. Replies can only be made through side comments. Blogs are group-based either with smaller groups or the entire class contributing to the blog. Journals are private reflections and writings by one person.  Another term for journal is "diary". Journals are private to the student and the instructor but can be made public. Wikis allow students to add content to a Blackboard course web site. Students can edit and add pages, images and links. A log of all changes is kept, so it is easy to keep track of a given page's editorial history, and of students' editing activity.

Getting Started with Blackboard Blogs

Getting Started with Blackboard Blogs

A Blog—a shorthand term that means Web log—is a personal online journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public viewing. Each Blog entry can include any combination of text, images, links, multimedia, Mashups, and attachments. Blogs encourage students to clearly express their ideas and addresses the need to expand various aspects of social learning. Blogs are an effective means of gaining insight into students' activities and provide a way to share the knowledge and materials collected. In Blackboard Learn, only enrolled users can view and author Blogs. The owner of the Blog creates multiple entries over a period of time and the instructor and course members can add comments. A Blog can also be owned by the course or a Group. In the Group area, all members of a Group can create entries for the same Blog, building upon one another. Any course member can read and comment on a Group Blog, but cannot make entries if not a member of the group. Watch the videos below to learn how to create, edit and comment on blogs.

Getting Started with Blackboard Journals

Getting Started with Blackboard Journals

Journals is a self-reflective tool that allows students to post their personal reflections about the course or discuss and analyze course related materials. Students have the opportunity for personalized and private conversations with the instructor or Group members. Journal assignments can help students make connections between their experiences as they create meaning and internalize learning. Watch the videos below to learn how to create a journal and comment on journal entries.

WIKIS