Upgrading is Not an Uphill Battle: How NIU Easily Transitioned to Blackboard Collaborate

In July 2011, Blackboard announced the release of Blackboard Collaborate™ 11 web conferencing, the first product that combined the best of both Elluminate Live! and Wimba Classroom. Drawing from the best elements of these two long-competing products, it boasted a new, modern interface that represented a tremendous leap forward. However, it also meant that schools using Wimba Classroom faced an upgrade process that was more significant than any upgrade before. Wimba Classroom customers not only had to learn the new user interface, they also had to learn a new administrative system as well. In this presentation at 2012 SLATE Conference, learn how the technology team at Northern Illinois University balanced other technology upgrade initiatives and staffing requirements in order to ensure a smooth-yet-quick upgrade to Blackboard Collaborate, and ultimately, enjoyed a much easier upgrade experience than they anticipated.

Designing an Exemplary Online Course: Blackboard Announces Open Online Course to be Offered

Let's build a better education experience

Blackboard has announced a new open online course “Designing an Exemplary Course,” as part of the CourseSites Open Course Series. The course will run from September 26th – October 17th, 2012. Registration is free and opens Wednesday, September 19th.

Whether you are just getting started or are an advanced online educator, this course will provide you with a framework to help identify and apply best practices for designing engaging online courses.

You will learn from 11 instructors and instructional designers including distinguished Exemplary Course Program (ECP) Directors and several of the 2012 ECP winners. Using the Blackboard ECP Rubric as a guide, the course will focus on the four critical elements of a course: design, interaction and collaboration, assessment, and learner support.

You will have the opportunity to participate in weekly live, online sessions, learn with peers in focus groups, and complete optional assignments to aid your course development and improvement. A panel of course design experts will facilitate each group to provide you with valuable feedback.

The learning environment will offer learners the flexibility to choose their own learning outcomes and time commitments based on individual needs. To maximize benefits of participation, optional homework assignments will be provided each week to apply concepts to build out one’s own course structure and materials. The course will provide a framework for forming collaborative teams.

For more details or to sign-up to be notified when registration opens, click here.

BbWorld 2012 Corporate Keynote

If you are a Blackboard client that missed BbWorld 2012, I recommend taking the time to watch Blackboard’s 2012 corporate keynote to hear firsthand of the innovations Blackboard is planning for the coming year.

BbWorld 2012 Recap

If you don’t blink, you will catch my split-second cameo appearance (around 1:45) in this recap video from BbWorld 2012 (thanks Andrea for the heads-up!)

BbWorld 2012: Day 3 Recap