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Blackboard to Release Updates to Blackboard Learn
New Workflows and Enhancements to Flagship Learning Management System will Support Educator & Student Efficiency

WASHINGTON, Oct. 25, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Blackboard Inc., a leading education technology company for teaching, learning and student engagement, today announced usability enhancements to Blackboard Learn, its flagship Learning Management System (LMS).  The enhanced workflows and improvements are intended to help faculty members better accomplish core teaching tasks and allow students to complete coursework more quickly. Updates for both the Blackboard Learn Original experience (also known as Blackboard Learn 9.1 for managed-hosted and self-hosted customers) and the Blackboard Learn Ultra experience in SaaS, will be available in November.

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The latest release of the Original experience will include:

  • Increased responsiveness: new enhancements to the Learn 2016 theme, introduced earlier this year, provide greater responsiveness for small devices. Faculty and students will be able to do more via their tablets and mobile phones.
  • A deeper integration with Dropbox: users can now link to their content and submit assignments directly from their Dropbox account.
  • Ability to drag & drop files: when instructors create content items, assignments, and blank pages, they can drag files from their computers to the "hot spot" in the content area. Students can also drag files to upload when they submit assignments.

Blackboard will also make the REST API framework available to all customers as its Technical Preview ends. REST APIs allow easier integration and faster updates between commercial and community built extensions and the LMS – ultimately providing instructors with more powerful teaching and learning workflows.

The Ultra experience for Blackboard Learn, which is deployed via SaaS, will also feature the new REST API framework. Other enhanced workflows include:

  • Test & Assignment Student Activity Reports: faculty members can note details of when each student accessed, began, and made a submission to an assignment or test.
  • Rubrics: instructors can ensure consistent and impartial grading and help students focus on assignments through the use of Rubrics.
  • Group Discussion Boards: students can communicate and collaborate on coursework more easily.
  • Course Content Conversion: instructors can import or copy content pages from the Original Course View into a document in the Ultra Course View. Text, attachments, multimedia, and links are also all carried forward.

"Institutions need to support the full range of students and instructors, from those who are just starting to take advantage of educational technology to the veterans who have been leveraging fully online courses," said Phill Miller, Vice President of Teaching and Learning at Blackboard. "Blackboard's focus here is to enable all types of users to accomplish teaching and learning tasks quickly and easily thanks to a mobile-friendly interface, advanced capabilities and powerful workflows."

Blackboard will demo the new features during EDUCAUSE, October 26-28 in Anaheim, California. Clients can visit the Blackboard booth located in the exhibit hall.

About Blackboard Inc.
Blackboard is a global leader in enterprise technology and innovative solutions that improve the experience of millions of students and learners around the world every day. Blackboard's solutions allow thousands of higher education, K-12, professional, corporate, and government organizations to extend teaching and learning online, facilitate campus commerce and security, and communicate more effectively with their communities. For more information about Blackboard, follow us on Twitter @Blackboard.

CONTACT:
D'Anthony White, Blackboard Inc.
202.303.9314 or
danthony.white@blackboard.com

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SOURCE Blackboard Inc.

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