EKU is moving to the Blackboard SaaS learning management system! After a long process of evaluation, EKU’s faculty chose Blackboard SaaS from three potential systems.
UPDATE, December 28, 2017: Blackboard is back online. All EKU users now use their entire email address (e.g., email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org) to login. Course enrollments will be online in the next few days. [Faculty/Staff PDF Instructions] [Student PDF Instructions]
Our hope is that Blackboard SaaS will provide several new features, improved stability, and better course options while being familiar enough to the old Blackboard that users will not feel lost.
New features will include the ability to mass-delete grade center columns, submission receipt tracking for students, drag-and-drop file uploads, integration with OneDrive and Google Drive accounts, and multimedia feedback options. Several of these features are already available, with more becoming available in the coming months.
The Blackboard SaaS system is cloud-hosted through Amazon Web Services, so we should have better stability through their backups and redundant systems. In addition, updates will now be continuously delivered to the system, so we should no longer have down-times for system updates.
For new course options, we will now have access to Collaborate – a web conferencing tool built for synchronous online course meetings.
Another new course option will be Ally – a tool to help you improve the accessibility of your course by evaluating content on web-accessibility standards and recommending improvements.