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Blackboard Help

About Course Content

A content item is any type of file, text, image, or link that appears in a content area, learning module, lesson plan, or folder. Your instructors add different types of content to these course areas.

Types of Content

Different types of content appear in a content area. All content shares a few similarities. Each piece of content has a name and description. Many types of content allow your instructor to set options, such as availability and date restrictions.

Each institution can select a different set of icons so your courses may look different.

Content Types
Icon Content Type Description
content item icon Item A general piece of content, such as a file, image, text, or link. A description and other items can be attached.
file icon File An HTML file used in the course. These files are viewed as a page within the course or as a separate piece of content in a separate browser window.
audio item icon Audio Audio file played in a page. If Autostart and Loop are both set to Yes, the audio file plays when you open the page and continues to play until you stop it or navigate away from the page.
image item icon Image Image file shown on the page.
video item icon Video Video file viewed from the page. The video player appears directly on the page.
link icon URL Link to a website or resource to provide a quick access point to relevant materials.
learning module icon Learning module A set of content that focuses on a specific subject with its own navigation. Your instructor sets the navigation so you must view content in a specific order, or permits you to view the content in any order. All types of content, including text, images, multimedia, assignments, and tests can be found in a learning module.

lesson plan icon

Lesson plan A lesson plan is a special type of content that combines information about the lesson itself with the curriculum resources used to teach it.
syllabus icon Syllabus An outline of a course of study. A syllabus contains course information, objectives, instructor contact information, assignments, class meeting dates, and textbook information.
course link icon Course link A shortcut to an item, tool, or area in a course. A course link provides a quick access point to relevant materials and tools.
content folder icon Content folder A content folder is a way of organizing content items. Content folders and subfolders set up a hierarchy to group related material together. Content folders are used to group material based on a theme, such as media clips. Content folders are used to group material based on a schedule, for example, placing all items for "week 1" together. Using folders to organize content items makes materials easier to find and reduces the length of a content area page.
blank page icon Blank page A blank page can be added and customized based on the needs of the course.
module page icon Module page Module pages are specialized content pages that present content in a module box. You can arrange the modules that appear on this page in any order. If allowed by your institution, you can personalize your module pages. A module page might be called a Home Page in your course.
tool area icon Tool A shortcut to a specific tool in the course, such as the discussion board or blogs. The link brings you to that tool and away from the content you are viewing. All tools in the course are accessible from the Tools page, included on the course menu by your institution.
Flickr mashup icon Flickr® Photo A link to a site for viewing and sharing photos and images.
Slideshare mashup icon SlideShare Presentation A link to a site for viewing and sharing Microsoft® PowerPoint®, Microsoft® OpenOffice, or Adobe® PDF presentations.
YouTube mashup icon YouTube™ video A link to a site for viewing and sharing online videos.

Content Availability

Your instructors can limit the availability of content items based on date, time, individual users, course groups, and performance on graded items. This means that the content you see on the course menu or in content areas can change over time.

For example, your instructor restricts access to a piece of content until you complete a unit test. The content appears after you complete the test. Your instructor can add another restriction such as only making the item appear after you complete the test and score at least 70 percent.

If you have questions about content that your instructor mentions is available that you don't see, make sure to ask if it is available to everyone or to some based on specific criteria.

Review Status

Review status allows your instructor to track interaction with specific content items. Review status sometimes affects the release of additional content.

For example, your instructor enables review status for an article added to a content area and made the release of a quiz contingent upon you reviewing the article. After you mark the article reviewed, the quiz appears.

A Mark Reviewed option appears with the item. After reviewing the item, click the option to mark it as Reviewed.

Image illustrating associated text

You can switch between Reviewed and Mark Reviewed. Use this option if you want to go back to a content item and review it again. Your instructor only views the current setting. If the item is marked Reviewed, then switched to Mark Review, your instructor does not see that the item was marked Reviewed at any time.