After consulting with faculty and assessing our options last spring, Learning Ventures began the transition from WebCT to Blackboard (Bb) 9 in March of 2010. If you are still using WebCT for online or web-assisted teaching, the time to switch is now.
The GOOD news is Bb 9 has some great tools for engaging students online:
- The Blog (web log) tool is a great way to encourage the development of an online community.
- The Discussion Board is easier to grade and easier to track student posts and replies.
- The Journal tool offers a private way to communicate with your students while tracking their individual reflections.
- The Wiki tool allows a group of students to collaborate on a collective document.
- The SafeAssign tool helps students cite their writing properly.
- The Assignment drop box allows you to submit multiple documents at once.
- You can drag and drop files to the course.
Bb 9 is a very different experience for the faculty and the instructional designer; therefore, you will need time and assistance to create a maximally learning-centered experience for your students. Learning Ventures offers extensive, hands-on support for faculty who use Bb 9. In addition to our regularly scheduled workshops (schedule available here: https://utdl.edu/DL_training), we invite your department or program to schedule an instructional session at your convenience.
To get more information about Bb 9, or to make an important connection with an instructional designer, contact LV:
For more updates on the transition, follow us on Twitter (@UTLV) and check our blog (feed available on the “Teaching” pane in the UT Portal. Also: http://wordpress.utoledo.edu/learningventures).