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What's New in Learn

Featured video: SafeAssign integration

Administrators: Don't forget to read the Release Notes and check out the Communication and Adoption Toolkit for your release to help you drive awareness and adoption of these new features and updates at your institution. (These resources are available in English only.)

The following tables will help you to get familiar with the features and building blocks available with the most recent updates to Blackboard Learn 9.1.

You can also check out BlackboardTV, the Blackboard YouTube channel, to view dozens of Blackboard Learn video tutorials. (These resources are available in English only.)

Learn 9.1 Q4 2016 changes

Learn 9.1 Q2 2016 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
REST APIs The 9.1 Q4 2016 release fully supports REST APIs. Administrators and developers can create integrations using REST APIs and secured with OAuth. Please note that we strongly encourage anyone making use of these APIs to thoroughly test their functionality. Visit the Blackboard Community for more information
Dropbox Education Integration Users can attach files and submit assignments from their personal Dropbox accounts using this new cloud service integration. Administrator
Drag and Drop Files When instructors create content items, assignments, and web links, they can drag files from their computers to the "hot spot" in the Attach Files area. Students can also drag files to upload when they submit assignments. Instructor
Submission Receipts Administrators and instructors can keep track of all student submissions, regardless of whether the attempt or assignment is deleted or the submission history is changed. A submission receipt is captured at the time of submission and includes information such as attached file information, date, time, etc. This feature provides evidence for academic disputes, giving students assurance about their work. Instructor
Reminders Instructors can send email reminders from Grade Center columns to students and members of groups who have missing coursework. Students receive a system-generated email that lists the course, coursework, and the due date if included. Instructor
Activity reports The Course Activity Overview report has been updated to improve the experience for larger enrollment courses. Instructors can filter the report and break down the calculations of student activity by course groups. Administrator

Learn 9.1 Q2 2016 changes

Learn 9.1 Q2 2016 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
REST APIs The 9.1 Q2 2016 release supports limited REST APIs in a Technical Preview. Administrators and developers can create integrations using REST APIs and secured with OAuth. Please note that we strongly encourage anyone making use of these APIs to thoroughly test their functionality. Visit the Blackboard Community for more information
Java 8 The 9.1 Q2 2016 release now uses the latest version of Java from Oracle. We strongly encourage anyone who has a Building Block to test it against Java 8 before installing the Learn 9.1 Q2 2016 release onto a production environment. Administrator
SAML Authentication The authentication framework has been updated to support the latest SAML 2.0 protocol, which focuses on security, improved user experience, and easier IT administration. Administrator
VALUE Rubrics For Blackboard Learn users who are interested in using VALUE rubrics developed by the Association of American Colleges & Universities (AAC&U), we are making them available for download and import. Each rubric has been built and formatted appropriately so it can be imported to your courses and used anywhere you can align and evaluate with rubrics today. Instructor
Localization We’ve made updates to the Swedish, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, and Korean language packs to correct translation issues and grading workflows. Clients who use the Korean language pack can globally replace username with user ID. Administrator

Learn 9.1 Q4 2015 changes

Learn 9.1 Q4 2015 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
Goal Performance Dashboard A competency-based education Building Block to map goals to courses within Learn. The Goal Performance Dashboard evaluates evidence of competencies individually, allowing for true measurement of mastery. Administrator
Grades Journey Grades Journey integrates your institution's Student Information System with Learn. Grades Journey allows you to exchange grade information between two separate systems. Administrator
PowerSchool SIS Integration As part of the innovative classroom, SIS Central two-way integration is now available for PowerSchool customers who license Blackboard Learn 9.1 October 2014 release or higher. SIS Central Product Information

Learn 9.1 December 2014 changes

Learn 9.1 December 2014 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
Chegg Study Partner Cloud Integration Instructors can add Chegg Study materials to their courses for student to access. Administrator

Learn 9.1 October 2014 changes

Learn 9.1 October 2014 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
Analytics for Learn A number of bug fixes and enhancements have been made. Administrator
Blackboard Store Students can easily purchase required course materials at competitive prices via personalized shopping lists and quick access from within Blackboard Learn. Instructors can find, compare, and assign materials from the largest online catalog of commercial and open educational content. Administrator
Calendar Individual users now have more choice about how their calendars are formatted both in the Calendar tool and when making date selections. They can alter the first day of the week that starts the calendar view in month and week views.

Users can also now choose the Hijri Islamic lunar calendar.

A course list filter is now available in the calendar.

Content Editor The Content Editor spell check option is now ON by default. Instructor
Language Packs Translation change requests have been implemented to improve the quality and usability of the language packs for Japanese, Simplified Chinese, Swedish, Spanish, and Turkish. Czech and Polish language packs have been added. Administrator
Outcomes Assessment Users can now access report options to create a printable view to save the visualized report as a PDF or XLS. Additional data fields are also available to provide further insight needed for in-depth data analysis for quantitative and qualitative assessment. Administrator
(in English only)
Video Everywhere Blackboard Learn has integrated with OAuth 2.0. With this update users are able to seamlessly use several video features within Learn without authentication issues. Administrator

October 2014 changes

October 2014 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
Bb Grader App The Grader App provides instructors with a mobile solution for reviewing, providing feedback, and grading student submissions to Blackboard Learn Assignments. Mobile Learn Update, Bb Grader App

September 2014 changes

September 2014 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
ConnectTxt ConnectTxt is now available for Blackboard Learn.
(in English only)
SaaS Deployment Option of Learn Learn is now available as a software-as-a-service (SaaS) deployment option. With the SaaS deployment option, Learn is hosted, delivered, and managed using a modern cloud computing infrastructure. Administrator

Learn 9.1 April 2014 changes

Learn 9.1 April 2014 Changes
Feature Description To Learn More
Activity Accumulator Tasks Activity Accumulator tasks have been moved from the database to bb-tasks. Administrator
API: Input Sanitization Hardening This release contains updated input sanitization APIs around primary key identifiers to make a more secure platform. Administrator
Assessments: Significant Figures In calculated formula questions, instructors can select the number of decimals or significant figures for the correct answers generated by the system. Instructor
Blackboard Collaborate Building Block The Blackboard Collaborate Launcher is now available to Windows users, giving them parity with Mac users. This utility provides a convenient and reliable way to launch Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing sessions and recordings. Instructor
Building Blocks Framework Improvements Blackboard has added two improvements to the Building Block Framework which improve application startup time by circumventing unnecessary class loading via bean introspection activity and unnecessary checks for loading of shared libraries.  
Courses: Course Creation Wizard Improvements Course Creation Wizard module requires user to have a system role and with a specific entitlement. Administrator
Financial Aid Reporting Generate reports of student academic contribution within a single or multiple courses in Blackboard Learn 9.1. Administrator
Grading: Anonymous Grading Instructors can hide student names from submitted assignments for anonymous grading. Instructor
Grading: Delegated Grading Instructors can delegate grading to specific users. Instructor
Installer Improvements This release includes changes in the installer that modified the services and configurations of Blackboard Learn. Administrator
Integration: Feed Passwords Integration feeds no longer are required to provide Learn passwords (RDBMS) at creation time for users, and can safely be omitted from all types of integration feeds. Administrator
Integration: Learning Information Services (LIS) Support for IMS LIS has been updated to conform to the 2.0 final specification, supporting more recent releases from SIS partners and vendors. Blackboard also now supports the retrieval of grade information via the LIS specification. Administrator
My Grades The look and feel of My Grades has been updated. Students can now view feedback by selecting View Feedback. Student
Portfolio Improvements Portfolios are now accessed from the global navigation and have a new authoring canvas. Instructors can create portfolio assignments. Administrator
Profiles The Enhanced Cloud Profile provides users with their first professional profiles. The added features help users demonstrate competencies they have developed through their educational journeys in a visual and uniquely compelling way. Administrator
Redis Cache Redis Cache is bundled in Learn 9.1 April 2014. Administrator
SafeAssign Integration SafeAssign is integrated into regular Learn assignments. Administrator
SafeAssign Originality Report Changes

The SafeAssign originality report has been changed in the following ways:

  • The report has been updated with a new look and feel. The report now displays multiple attachments.
  • The email option has been removed. While viewing the report, you can "print to pdf" either natively or using a plug-in based on the operating system and browser combination that you are using to create an accessible PDF. Then, you can share the PDF in multiple ways, including secure email.
  • Each source now has a color unique to the source. Text matching the source is highlighted in the unique source color. There are a maximum of 30 different colors. This matches the maximum of 30 different sources.
  • By default, all citation source highlighting is on. Instructors can select Show/Hide All Highlighting to turn source highlighting off and on for all sources at once.
  • The report layout has been improved for narrow screens. The report information and citations now appear at the top of the submission when instructors reduce the width of the viewing area.
  • Instructors use Select Sources and Resubmit to determine which sources they want to include in the next report. By default, all sources are included. Instructors can clear the check box for each source to exclude from the results. This behavior is the reverse of previous releases.
  • The page instructors are redirected to after resubmitting a paper has been updated to be more in line with the styling of the new report.
  • During the redesign of the SafeAssign originality report, it became clear that the mixed script count was potentially showing misleading and confusing information. The mixed script count identifies the potential of multiple scripts used in an assignment to hide acts of plagiarism. It was discovered that the count was based on the number of words or sentences in the text and was only triggered by Cyrillic. The count should be based on all of the ways multiple scripts can be used to avoid plagiarism detection. Also, the areas where each script was used were not identified in the document and had to be manually located. For these reasons, while the originality report continues to alert you to any use of mixed-script characters within individual words anywhere in a submission, the word count will not be available until it can be accurate for all script combinations and all instances can be highlighted in the report.
Student Preview Instructors can view their course exactly as a student does by using a student account the system generates for them. Administrator
User Interface: Frames Removed Frames have been completely removed from the Learn application and replaced with HTML5 compliant DIVs and iFrames. This change improves page printing, accessibility, and page navigation. Administrator

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