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Library Guides

IT Basics: Blackboard

Welcome

This page will help you to:

  • Understand what Blackboard is and how to get started using it.
  • Use Blackboard to submit your coursework.
  • Learn how to customise your experience to suit your learning style and needs.
  • Get guidance on how to approach common issues using Blackboard.

Getting Started

Blackboard is a virtual learning environment (VLE) that you will use to access information and services to support you in your studies. This can include your module handbook, a week-by-week outline of your module, and assessment briefs. You can also use use it participate in online discussions and live online teaching sessions.

Online Coursework Submission

Submitting your work

Checklist

  • Re-read the brief: This may seem obvious, however it's always a good idea to give the coursework brief one last read-through. It helps you to be sure that you're submission includes everything it needs to, and gives you a chance to check the work one last time.
  • Check the rules for submission: Sometimes you'll be able to make more than one submission, other times you can only make one. Check with your module leader to find out which is the case for this coursework.
  • Give yourself plenty of time: The time needed to upload your submission will depend on your Internet connection speed and the size of the file(s). Allow enough time to upload your work and avoid any technical issues.

FAQs

The Learning Innovation and Digital Engagement (LIDE) team have made a page of frequently asked questions. It covers submissions made by Turnitin, Blackboard Assignment, and Panopto.

Marks and feedback

You can view your provisional marks after you've submitted your coursework and it has been marked. You will also be able to see feedback in the form of comments left for you by your module leader.

Your final marks will be published once an Examiner's Meeting has approved them. The Student Hub pages have more information about how and when your marks will be published.

Accessibility

Blackboard accessibility features

Screen readers

If you are using Windows it is recommended to use Chrome and Jaws screen reader. Jaws is a available on all Unversity computers.

If you are using a Mac, if is recommended to use Safari and VoiceOver (a screen reader built into the Mac OS X operating system).

Keyboard shortcuts

The Blackboard Help website has information about common keyboard shortcuts you can use to navigate Blackboard.

Blackboard Collaborate accessibility features

Blackboard Collaborate includes a range of features that can support you when you are accessing online classes and appointments. They include:

  • Adjustable colours and font sizes,
  • Closed captioning and visual notifications,
  • Keyboard shortcuts and navigation.

Troubleshooting

Problems logging in?

If you have a technical problem logging in to Blackboard, you should contact the IT Service Desk.

The IT Service Desk is open between 08:30-18:00, from Monday to Friday.

Problems joining an online teaching session?

When you are preparing to join an online teaching session, there are some simple tips that will help you connect easily:

  • Allow for some time before the start of the session to get your device set up and test everything is working.
  • Make sure that your browser is up to date.
  • Clear your browser's cache/cookies.
  • Check your Wifi/Internet connection by trying to access other sites.

The Learning Innovation and Digital Engagement (LIDE) team have created a checklist of steps to work through to resolve the issue.

Problems submitting a coursework assessment?

The Learning Development and Digital Engagement (LIDE) team FAQ page can help answer most issues you might have.

You can also email them: blackboard-support@westminster.ac.uk

Remember to include your student ID, the name or ID of the module, and the name of the coursework assessment.

If you've submitted the wrong file as a coursework submission, contact your module leader as well as the LIDE team.

Further Help

This guide was written by Terry Bassett.

You can get more support on academic skills by attending our workshops and appointments.