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Glossary of Terms

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Glossary of Terms
Term Definition
Active A Blackboard Learn record in active state appears in the database and within the application.
API Application Programming Interface. An API is code within an application that is revealed to allow programmers to create software that interacts with the application.
Available A Blackboard Learn active record that is available and can be managed and manipulated within Blackboard Learn. For example, a Course that is available can be accessed by all users with a role in that Course.
Batch operation Processes several data records at once.
Batch UID An attribute, or attributes, that are unique to each record within a data entity.
Change Key Event Driven API persistence action. Changes the unique identifier for a person or group. The change will be reflected in any membership records as well.
Concrete Data Types and Abstract Data Types Concrete data types, such as Courses and users, appear within Blackboard Learn. Abstract data types, such as group or person are IMS standards that relate to concrete, Blackboard Learn data types.
Course A data entity where each record consists of an individual Course. Attributes identify details about the Course, including: Course Name, Course ID, and descriptive information.
Course Category A data entity where each record consists of a Course catalog category. Attributes include a category name, a category key called a mnemonic, and the availability of the category.
Course Category Membership A data entity where each record connects a Course to a Course catalog category. Course Category Memberships are identified by a composite primary key composed of the Course ID and the category key.
Data attribute A type of data that may be shared by the records in an entity. If viewing an entity as a table, an attribute is an individual column.
Data Ownership Data attributes are owned by the institution information system or by Blackboard Learn. If a data attribute is owned by Blackboard Learn, than a difference between the feed file and the Blackboard Learn database is ignored during a Snapshot operation.
Data Source Management Identifies external data sets. All data that is integrated with Blackboard Learn is tagged with an identifier that groups it with a logical set of data. The Data Source Management Tool can be used to not only identify, but to create a sophisticated management system to handle the interaction between the institution’s information systems and Blackboard Learn.
Deleted A deleted record has been removed from Blackboard Learn. The term “deleted” is used with the term “purged” interchangeably.
Disable Event Driven API persistence action. Puts a record into disabled state.
Disabled A Blackboard Learn record in disabled state still exists in the Blackboard Learn database but does not appear within the application.
Entity A group of data records that share the same attributes. Each record is unique and identified by a key.
Field A field within Blackboard Learn is any item that accepts input from the user. Information entered into a field within the application is stored as an attribute within the database.
Group IMS data entity that is represented by the Course and Organization entities in Blackboard Learn.
Group Membership IMS data entity that is represented by the Student Enrollment, Staff Student, and Organization Membership entities in Blackboard Learn.
Insert Event Driven API persistence action. Inserts a record into the Blackboard Learn database.
Manual Mode The feed file is processed and each record is either inserted or updated. If a record appears within Blackboard Learn and not in the feed file, it is not changed. Manual mode is often used to explicitly perform an insert or update of a small number of records, unlike snapshot mode, where data is reconciled between Blackboard Learn and the institution’s information system.
Object An object is an instance of a java class that contains both data attributes and methods for handling the data.
Organization A data entity where each record consists of an individual an Organization. Attributes identify details about the Organization, including: Organization Name, Organization ID, and descriptive information.
Organization Category A data entity where each record consists of an Organization catalog category. Attributes include a category name, a category key called a mnemonic, and the availability of the category.
Organization Category Membership A data entity where each record connects an Organization to an Organization catalog category. Organization Category Memberships are identified by a composite primary key composed of the Organization ID and the category key.
Organization Membership A data entity where each record consists of a user’s participation in a Course. Organization Membership records are identified by a composite primary key composed of the user ID and the Course ID.
Persister Objects that control the data input into Blackboard Learn as part of the Data Integration process.
Person IMS data entity that is represented by the User entity in Blackboard Learn.
Purged A purged record has been removed from Blackboard Learn. The term “purged” is used with the term “deleted” interchangeably.
Record An item within an entity that contains the attributes of that entity. Viewing an entity as a table, a record would be an individual row within that table.
Remove Event Driven API persistence action. Deletes records from the Blackboard Learn database.
Remove Mode The records in the feed file are permanently deleted from Blackboard Learn. In addition, any associated records, such as enrollments or category links, are deleted as well.
Right to Left Languages such as Arabic and Hebrew are aligned right to left.
Save Event Driven API persistence action. Updates a record if it exists. If it does not, the record is inserted into the Blackboard Learn database.
Smart Update Synonymous with manual update, a smart update inserts or updates but does not change records that exist in the Blackboard Learn database that are not in the feed file.
Snapshot The Snapshot process takes a feed file generated from another of the institution’s information systems and processes the data within Blackboard Learn.
Snapshot Controller The Snapshot Controller automates and manages the snapshot process after the Snapshot Generator creates a feed file. Like the Snapshot Generator, the institution must write the Snapshot Controller.
Snapshot Generator Software, written by the institution, which generates flat files or XML files from another of the institution’s information systems.
Snapshot Mode The feed file is processed and each record is inserted, updated, or disabled.
Staff Student A data entity where each record consists of a staff member’s participation in a Course. Staff Student records are identified by a composite primary key composed of the User Name and the Course ID. The user’s role in the Course must be identified in the record.
Student Enrollment A data entity where each record consists of a Student’s participation in a Course. Student enrollment records are identified by a composite primary key composed of the User Name and the Course ID.
Unavailable A Blackboard Learn active record that is unavailable will appear within the Blackboard Learn, however, only users with certain roles can see it. For example, a Course that is unavailable will not appear to Students, but administrators and Instructors assigned to the Course can view the Course.
Update Event Driven API persistence action. Updates a record in the Blackboard Learn database.
User A data entity where each record consists of an individual user. Attributes identify details about the user, including: user ID, user role, contact and other personal information.