About the Blackboard Collaborate Building Block
The Blackboard Collaborate Building Block offers a robust tool set that allows instructors to web conference and connect with one student or an entire class. Instructors and students can collaborate using audio, video, and recording capabilities. Other functions include private and public chat, a whiteboard, application sharing, a clip art library, and the ability to add and edit content at any time.
Contact your school for more information about enabling this tool to use in your courses.
Built-in Teleconference and VoIP Options
With Blackboard Collaborate, you can select built-in teleconference, which will dynamically generate the conference call number, leader PIN, and participant PIN. Students and guests accessing a session will see this information before they enter the room.
With the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) option, users can hear the session through their computer speakers or a USB headset. With a headset, outside noises and echoes are diminished.
VoIP also helps you distinguish among speakers. A microphone icon appears next to the participant's name when he or she speaks. For large classes, this can help you understand who is grasping the material or who needs additional help.
You may choose to use a third party option for your sessions. You need to supply participants with the information to access the session.
Default Rooms for Each Course and Instructor
Course Room: A default room provided for your course that lasts as long as the duration of your course. By default, the room is titled with your course name and is always available.
- By default, students enter your Course Room as participants. Instructors and administrators enter as moderators. You can allow all participants to join as moderators so collaboration can start without your presence.
- If you have supervision concerns, you can completely turn off your Course Room at the course level.
- Use your Course Room to acclimate students to your course setup, introduce new concepts, host Q and A sessions, lead study sessions, and grade group presentations.
My Room: A default room provided for each instructor that lasts as long you retain an account on the system. By default, the room is titled with your name and is always available.
- My Room is accessible from any course where you have the instructor role.
- You can disallow participants from a certain course to enter your room.
- By default, students enter your room as participants. You can allow all students to join as moderators or only allow select users from a course you teach to join your room.
- Use My Room to provide office hours or help to users across all your courses. When privacy is a concern, create a new session and restrict access to only the user you need to discuss an issue with.
Collaborate Launcher Pop-up Window
With some operating systems, when users click the Launch Room function, a pop-up window provides the following two options.
- If you do not have the Collaborate Launcher, download it now, and when complete, double-click the .collab file in your Downloads folder to launch your session.
- If you have already downloaded the Collaborate Launcher, double-click the .collab file in your Downloads folder to launch your session.
You may find you do not need to use the launcher as the .jnlp file opens your session properly after clicking Launch Room.
If you want to continue using the launcher for future sessions, click the You many need Collaborate Launcher link at any time to access the pop-up window again.
You can learn more about downloading or using the Collaborate Launcher from the link provided in the pop-up window.
To learn more, see Blackboard Collaborate Building Block in the Course Tools folder.