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“Can WebCT Backups be Uploaded to BB 9.1?”

A colleague writes:

I backed up my courses in the Fall 2009. If we were using Web CT then will there be any compatibility to upload them to Blackboard?

Though the basic tools are similar and your files will appear much as they did in WebCT when you move to BB9.1, the structure of BB9.1 is not identical to WebCT. So if you try to upload a backup from WebCT to BB9.1, you’ll be putting a square peg in a round hole.

So, if you have a WebCT backup file that you would like restored in BB9.1, here is what to do:

  1. Contact Learning Ventures’ instructional designers by sending an email to utlv@utoledo.edu. Let them know the course number, section, and semester you would like to restore. (If you already have a backup file, you can simply send it to them at that address or give them the link to any filesharing service you use).
  2. The Designer will then arrange to have a backup of the course files extracted from our servers. The Designer will send that file to you with instructions on how to upload the file to BB9.1. A video tutorial describing this process will soon be available online at http://www.utoledo.edu/dl/faculty/index.html.
  3. We are, of course, willing to help you with this task if necessary, and can use a variety of technologies to help you (“Teamviewer” is a particularly helpful tool that allows you to share your screen with a designer).
  4. Once the file is uploaded, you will need to scour your site for broken links and changed settings. We recommend logging in as a “student” (username.s) and trying out your links.

We stand ready to help you at any stage of this transition. Our staff of student workers, instructional developers, and instructional designers are all committed to student learning, and excellent online experiences can make a difference.

If you have all your files organized on your own computer or in storage, you might wish to simply re-build your course in the new system. Video tutorials on our web site, a lively online community, and our own designers can all facilitate the development of an engaging, interactive online experience in the new, Web 2.0-savvy Blackboard system.

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