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Teaching with Technology:
Blackboard Learning Management System

Blackboard is a web-based learning management system providing faculty with a common, university-wide tool for content delivery, synchronous or asynchronous class communication, testing and assessment, and grade management.  Used in both face-to-face classes as an enhancement, blended classes, and totally online classes, Blackboard can be customized by faculty to provide one stop teaching facilitation, including:

  • Delivery of content in multiple file types, including documents, PDF files, PowerPoints, spreadsheets, video clips, or web-based links
  • Web-based storage of files and cross course content, including portfolios
  • Adaptable release of course content to maximize learning
  • A simple process in which to make class announcements
  • Email to entire classes, groups, or individuals
  • Use of audio presentations or verbal threaded discussions
  • Collaboration by students either real time or through distributed means
  • Web Conferencing through the use of embedded Wimba products

Some potentially valuable instructional uses of Blackboard in higher education include:

  • Consistent look and feel to web enhancement and online delivery of content
  • The ability to integrate web content seamlessly with textbooks or lecture material
  • High reliability communication features to connect faculty with students and students to each other
  • A robust management system for collaboration with colleagues

The CTE offers a variety of workshops to assist faculty members with exploring the instructional uses of Blackboard, including:  Introduction to Blackboard 7; Blackboard Assessment; Blackboard Content Management System, Blackboard Portfolios; and Blackboard Communications.  More detail about these workshops can be found here. Faculty members interested in learning more about how this tool might be used in their teaching are welcome to contact Britt Watwood (bwatwood@vcu.edu) or Bud Deihl (wdeihl@vcu.edu) at the CTE .

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Virginia Commonwealth University | Center for Teaching Excellence
Last modified: June 20, 2013
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