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Blackboard Inc. is an enterprise learning management systems vendor. Blackboard was founded in 1997 and became a public company in 2004. The company provides education, mobile, communication, and commerce software and related services to clients including education providers, corporations and government organizations. As of December 2010, Blackboard software and services are used by over 9,300 institutions in more than 60 countries. Blackboard Learn is the company's flagship LMS, supporting course management, test & assessment design and administration, and is extensible via Blackboard's suite of addable modules.https://dudodiprj2sv7.cloudfront.net/product-logos/OE/3K/AQ9X8WT7TICZ.pngBlack Board Learn master for excellence in on -line teachingBlackBoard Learn is used as the education platform for teaching online nursing students. It is used to provide classes, tests, student presentations and online conferences,Allows an on-line classroom to be divided into breakout rooms when smaller work groups are needed Allows in a fairly easy framework to navigate a forum that interacts via camera & audio in a synchronous on -line class Allows classes to be recorded and effortless archiving of the class recordings,The recent upgraded version has affected the connectivity for the instructors & students with frequent bumps out of the session - breaking the teaching thread Loading of presentations can have technology glitches that don't occur from student to student or instructor to instructor Company support team is reluctant to help on-line support unless the facility/organization's support team have been utilized first, which often is not possible when problems occur after hours when evening classes are in session and organization's IT staff leave at 5 pm. Grading center in BlackBoard was recently upgraded and this has increased the labor intensity of the instructor grading assignments within BlackBoard,7,It does meet the objective of offering the college within the university one program/one platform to teach,Great collaboration between Students and TeachersI used Blackboard back in college and it was a great tool for connecting students with their professors. It made it so easy to access assignments or different handouts from class that you may have missed. In addition, it provides a way for you to virtually hand in assignments if you miss class or if it's easier for the professor to do it that way. The platform also allows for collaboration among student groups for class, because you're able to have discussion boards and your own group pages to collaborate with one another.,Collaboration Discussion Connecting educators and students User-friendly Access to assignments Access to class information/updates,Not very visually appealing Would be nice if all professors adopted it, some refuse to use it Frequently get errors when sometimes handing in assignments or uploading documents,10,Better communication Better learning experience Improved grades Easier collaboration,Uploading Downloading documents Participating in discussion boards,Not visually appealing If teachers have too many folders or topics it can be hard to find information The timeout feature can make your submissions not go through,Yes,10Blackboard Just So-SoBlackboard is the learning management system used by the faculty and students of our college. Blackboard provides an online place to manage all aspects of course administration for faculty and a place for students to access course content and grades. Blackboard is used by most faculty for at least posting a syllabus, but use of other features varies per professor.,Blackboard has purchased a number of companies to add functionality to their product,Their customer support is inconsistent. Sometimes it is fairly good, but right now we are more often frustrated by the lack of concern for what the customer needs. What company tells a user that they are aware that something is broken but that they are choosing to not fix it? Blackboard does. Things that the user needs to do are buried down a few layers and are not intuitive to find. For instance, to make a course available, the user has to go to the course control panel, click "Customization" and then "Properties." Then it is necessary to scroll down to find the "Make course available?" question and click the "Yes" radio button. This could be so much simpler! Just add a toggle button at the top of the instructor interface that says "Make Available?" with the ability to toggle between yes and no. They already do something similar with the edit course function. The Grade Center is clunky and not intuitive. Faculty complain most about this feature.,3,Blackboard has had a neutral impact on our business objectives in that some faculty use it more than others. We don't hear much about Blackboard unless a feature is broken. I do think that Blackboard is very frustrating for many faculty to use.,Canvas and Sakai,Microsoft Office 2016,200,3,Distance Learning Traditional classroom courses where Blackboard is used to supplement the teaching learning environment,5,No,Existing Relationship with the Vendor,I think we would accept user feedback about their experiences with Blackboard, but the decision on product would be made by the technical group. Getting too many cooks in the kitchen complicates matters. If it were up to me only, I would have asked a couple of competing vendors in to see a demonstration of their products.,No,5,Yes,Nothing comes to mind.,None of the functionality stands out as being easy or elegant when using Blackboard.,Making a course available Using the Grade Center Most functionality is less intuitive than it should be.,Yes, but I don't use it,5Blackboard okay and not okayBlackboard is used as a learning platform for online and campus classes for students to access learning information. The software addresses the need of giving students access to information to learn.,Blackboard is fairly easily to use, no large learning curve is needed. Blackboard has very little down time. Blackboard several add-on functionalities that add value. The clickable rubric is a great tool...although the point system should not be broken down to such tiny small points.,Blackboard has a lot of room for improvement in terms of notifications. If a student posts an assignment or updates something there is no notification upon logging to make a professor aware. Using videos in Blackboard is very challenging, if you design your own and want to upload them. They used to appear on the home page but they no longer do. The threaded discussions are hard to follow because every thread opens rather than allowing the reader to select the threads they want to read. The notification for a makeup exam or an overridden grade are the same notification in the gradebook versus if the grades updated automatically as some of their competition programs do. Blackboard is my least favorite system to work with due to not be as user friendly as other programs. The clickable rubrics are great, but they should focus on whole points instead of .1, .2, .3, .4, and so on.,7,As an adjunct professor, it has an impact by limiting or creating challenges on what I can offer students in terms of learning.,D2L,MoodleBlackboard is an easy to use LMS.I have worked for multiple institutions that have used Blackboard as its primary LMS for online course delivery. Blackboard Learn integrates with several publisher textbooks, such as Pearson and McGraw-Hill. However, without an integrated CMS, user and course data must be managed manually, which can be time-consuming and tedious if mismanaged. Blackboard Collaborate could use some improvement as it does not function on par with comparable video conference software. Its integration into Blackboard makes Collaborate one less system for learners to log into, but its functionalities are limited. Adobe Connect can be linked within Blackboard, but still launches externally.,Textbook integration: Instructors can easily pair courses with publisher content, such as quizzes, educational videos, and online texts. Discussion boards: Students can easily discuss topics in Blackboard forums, which offers nested views for easier organization of replies. The grade book is easy to manage data and set up. Easy for learners to access across institiutions because Blackboard is an industry standard.,Blackboard needs to improve their mobile access as it should be integrated into Learn, not a separate entity altogether. Blackboard Collaborate crashes and freezes during delivery of live training events and it has minimal functionality. The Common Cartridge does not function well when moving content from one LMS to another. It loads everything as a link and opens in a new plain text window, making workflow tedious. If migrating many courses between Blackboard, and say, Canvas, for example, Blackboard will recommend a third party company to handle the migration instead of fixing the issue in their system to get the Common Cartridge to load properly.,9,At one of the institutions that I worked for, the ROI was excellent for the number of users we were serving; however, I could not speak to other instances as I was not aware of the overall cost of the contract.,Canvas, Drupal and Moodle,Canvas, Drupal, Articulate Studio, Adobe Presenter, Adobe Connect
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Blackboard Learn
124 Ratings
Score 7.1 out of 101
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Blackboard Learn Reviews

Blackboard Learn
124 Ratings
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Score 7.1 out of 101
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February 05, 2018

Blackboard Learn Review: "Black Board Learn master for excellence in on -line teaching"

Score 7 out of 10
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Verified User
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BlackBoard Learn is used as the education platform for teaching online nursing students. It is used to provide classes, tests, student presentations and online conferences
  • Allows an on-line classroom to be divided into breakout rooms when smaller work groups are needed
  • Allows in a fairly easy framework to navigate a forum that interacts via camera & audio in a synchronous on -line class
  • Allows classes to be recorded and effortless archiving of the class recordings
  • The recent upgraded version has affected the connectivity for the instructors & students with frequent bumps out of the session - breaking the teaching thread
  • Loading of presentations can have technology glitches that don't occur from student to student or instructor to instructor
  • Company support team is reluctant to help on-line support unless the facility/organization's support team have been utilized first, which often is not possible when problems occur after hours when evening classes are in session and organization's IT staff leave at 5 pm.
  • Grading center in BlackBoard was recently upgraded and this has increased the labor intensity of the instructor grading assignments within BlackBoard
BlackBoard is suitable for large classes combining group sections and making a large platform for presentation. It is a program that can give a group of instructors a way to share a class in a very fluid manner constructing sessions, sections and combining and separating groups as needed very quickly.

BlackBoard is no longer a stable enough environment (connectivity issues in the new version) for individual and instructor testing sessions on video. Some of the nursing courses being online require a visual clinical skills demonstration and this current version is not stable for this testing via camera sharing.
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September 08, 2017

Blackboard Learn Review: "Great collaboration between Students and Teachers"

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
I used Blackboard back in college and it was a great tool for connecting students with their professors. It made it so easy to access assignments or different handouts from class that you may have missed. In addition, it provides a way for you to virtually hand in assignments if you miss class or if it's easier for the professor to do it that way. The platform also allows for collaboration among student groups for class, because you're able to have discussion boards and your own group pages to collaborate with one another.
  • Collaboration
  • Discussion
  • Connecting educators and students
  • User-friendly
  • Access to assignments
  • Access to class information/updates
  • Not very visually appealing
  • Would be nice if all professors adopted it, some refuse to use it
  • Frequently get errors when sometimes handing in assignments or uploading documents
I think it's really well suited as a way for teachers to easily communicate with their students in a less formal way. If they need to send out an announcement to the class, it's very easy to do so and it assures that all students in the class get the message. In addition, if there's a snow day or the teacher will be out sick, it's a great platform to schedule a make up class or provide any missed materials because of the cancellation.
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August 18, 2017

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard Just So-So"

Score 3 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Blackboard is the learning management system used by the faculty and students of our college. Blackboard provides an online place to manage all aspects of course administration for faculty and a place for students to access course content and grades. Blackboard is used by most faculty for at least posting a syllabus, but use of other features varies per professor.
  • Blackboard has purchased a number of companies to add functionality to their product
  • Their customer support is inconsistent. Sometimes it is fairly good, but right now we are more often frustrated by the lack of concern for what the customer needs. What company tells a user that they are aware that something is broken but that they are choosing to not fix it? Blackboard does.
  • Things that the user needs to do are buried down a few layers and are not intuitive to find. For instance, to make a course available, the user has to go to the course control panel, click "Customization" and then "Properties." Then it is necessary to scroll down to find the "Make course available?" question and click the "Yes" radio button. This could be so much simpler! Just add a toggle button at the top of the instructor interface that says "Make Available?" with the ability to toggle between yes and no. They already do something similar with the edit course function.
  • The Grade Center is clunky and not intuitive. Faculty complain most about this feature.
Blackboard was created with the college classroom in mind, and its features apply most to this environment. It has the tools to work well in the online classroom scenario. It may not be a good fit for the corporate training world.
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Donna Kjellander profile photo
March 29, 2017

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard okay and not okay"

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Blackboard is used as a learning platform for online and campus classes for students to access learning information. The software addresses the need of giving students access to information to learn.
  • Blackboard is fairly easily to use, no large learning curve is needed.
  • Blackboard has very little down time.
  • Blackboard several add-on functionalities that add value.
  • The clickable rubric is a great tool...although the point system should not be broken down to such tiny small points.
  • Blackboard has a lot of room for improvement in terms of notifications. If a student posts an assignment or updates something there is no notification upon logging to make a professor aware.
  • Using videos in Blackboard is very challenging, if you design your own and want to upload them. They used to appear on the home page but they no longer do.
  • The threaded discussions are hard to follow because every thread opens rather than allowing the reader to select the threads they want to read.
  • The notification for a makeup exam or an overridden grade are the same notification in the gradebook versus if the grades updated automatically as some of their competition programs do.
  • Blackboard is my least favorite system to work with due to not be as user friendly as other programs.
  • The clickable rubrics are great, but they should focus on whole points instead of .1, .2, .3, .4, and so on.
If you are doing a hybrid course, then Blackboard works, but for a full online college course Blackboard is behind in its technology. Blackboard offers a wide variety of add-on's some are useful and some are not. The engagement tool holds no value unless you are blind and can't see what students are posting. The clickable rubrics are one of the greatest tools out there, but the score breakdown needs work.
Read Donna Kjellander's full review
Rachel Hudish profile photo
September 26, 2016

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard is an easy to use LMS."

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
I have worked for multiple institutions that have used Blackboard as its primary LMS for online course delivery. Blackboard Learn integrates with several publisher textbooks, such as Pearson and McGraw-Hill. However, without an integrated CMS, user and course data must be managed manually, which can be time-consuming and tedious if mismanaged.
Blackboard Collaborate could use some improvement as it does not function on par with comparable video conference software. Its integration into Blackboard makes Collaborate one less system for learners to log into, but its functionalities are limited. Adobe Connect can be linked within Blackboard, but still launches externally.
  • Textbook integration: Instructors can easily pair courses with publisher content, such as quizzes, educational videos, and online texts.
  • Discussion boards: Students can easily discuss topics in Blackboard forums, which offers nested views for easier organization of replies.
  • The grade book is easy to manage data and set up.
  • Easy for learners to access across institiutions because Blackboard is an industry standard.
  • Blackboard needs to improve their mobile access as it should be integrated into Learn, not a separate entity altogether.
  • Blackboard Collaborate crashes and freezes during delivery of live training events and it has minimal functionality.
  • The Common Cartridge does not function well when moving content from one LMS to another. It loads everything as a link and opens in a new plain text window, making workflow tedious. If migrating many courses between Blackboard, and say, Canvas, for example, Blackboard will recommend a third party company to handle the migration instead of fixing the issue in their system to get the Common Cartridge to load properly.
Blackboard is an industry standard for training and higher education, because of this, many users who have experience using it in higher education can easily use it when they move onto government or corporate training. It is easy to use and manage as a content developer. It is best suited to manage course documents, facilitate outside of class discussion, gather important student assessment data, and analyze course assessment results for areas of improvement.
Read Rachel Hudish's full review
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December 13, 2016

Blackboard Learn: "Blackboard Review"

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Blackboard is currently being used across the whole organization. It serves as our main learning LMS at the university to distribute resource materials, upload student assignments, gradebook, and main online course tool as well.
  • Easy to use. It has an intuitive interface that instructors can readily customize.
  • Easy to copy a course onto new versions for follow-on semesters.
  • Easy gradebook for students and instructors to keep track of grades.
  • Does not sync gradebook well with all other platforms e.g. with WebAssign, which I use for online homework assignments.
  • Not easy to create html-free surveys. Usually there are some tags inside the saved response files.
  • Not easy to write Math.
Not so good for sciences, better for arts and humanities.
Read Sujata Krishna's full review
Eric Kunnen profile photo
September 23, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Creating the Next Generation of Teaching and Learning by Leveraging Blackboard"

Score 10 out of 10
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Verified User
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Blackboard is the enterprise course management solution at Grand Valley State University (GVSU). All faculty, staff, and students have accounts on the system and every course each semester has a Blackboard course site available for faculty to use in their teaching. In addition, organization sites are used by a wide array of departments and student groups.

In addition to traditional face to face courses, the Blackboard learning environment is used by GVSU's online and hybrid classes as the virtual classroom, enabling faculty to deliver engaging content and media while providing active learning-based assignments and assessments which include student feedback. Blackboard powers a collaborative and high-touch campus community with communication tools that span the range of asynchronous (announcements, email, discussion boards, etc.) to synchronous tools that include Blackboard Enterprise Instant Messaging and real-time live capabilities with Blackboard Collaborate.

By leveraging the system to provide role-based information through personalized information with the Blackboard Community system portal, the university can fine tune messaging and help to communicate through the clutter. In addition, the Enterprise Survey tool within the Blackboard system helps to deliver surveys and serves as an effective way to learn the pulse of the faculty, staff, and students.

Blackboard powers the networked learning environment at GVSU.
  • Blackboard is an effortless, easy-to-use, and scalable environment that includes a suite of tools and capabilities that enhance face to face teaching while powering high quality online and hybrid teaching and learning.
  • Blackboard empowers universities, colleges, and K12 schools with the ability to extend the boundaries of the classroom through content delivery, assessment, and a suite of communication tools.
  • Blackboard provides an environment of customization, personalization, and integration through the Building Blocks program. This provides an effective way to extend the capabilities of the system through the addition of third party, open source, and home grown applications.
  • Blackboard is focused on accessibility and the support of a variety of standards that include LTI and ADA.
  • As Blackboard has grown in adoption, popularity, and use over the years, one challenge has been supporting a multitude of users and campus constituencies that are running a wide variety of hardware and software versions. The Blackboard listserv community has come along side of users to assist users by the sharing of clients, along with a newly renewed focus on end user support.
  • With the wealth of tools and capabilities, as well as Blackboard acquisitions over the years, the integration of these tools has sometimes lagged and taken longer due to competing priorities with support, new product development, and maintenance. With new leadership at Blackboard in the past few years, the integration of a variety of solutions and tools is now a clear priority.
The key questions to ask during the selection process would be how well the product facilitates the following:
1) Ease of Use
2) Scalability
3) Accessibility
4) Support
5) Integration Capabilities
6) Community Activity
7) Quality and Depth of Features
Read Eric Kunnen's full review
Annaliza Marks profile photo
September 18, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Why our small college pays for Blackboard instead of Moodle, an open source software product."

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
I work for a small liberal arts college that is state run. We use Blackboard primarily for supplemental course materials, such as PowerPoints, assignments, assessments and student grades and we use it for 100% fully deployed online courses. We average about 40-60 online courses and 250-300 supplemental courses. About 85% of our students use Blackboard in some manner. We also work with the K-12 community and off campus programming. Web courses, webinars, business meetings and dual credit courses for high school students are being used in Blackboard. We also have a full online program developed specifically for the Department of Military Affairs and the Department of Juvenile Justice. Our newest project involves online courses that are combined with our students and international students developed through the Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) initiative. We currently have three COIL courses that work specifically with students in Spain and have plans to develop other courses in a few different countries.
  • Blackboard is very detailed. It has all the bells and whistles anyone can ask for in a Learning Management system. Especially for the instructor. Features like the retention center keeps the instructors engaged and helps students who may need a little extra attention.
  • Blackboard is very easy for the students and the instructors to use. There are a lot of training materials developed by Blackboard (and by other schools), including written manuals and videos that students and instructors can watch.
  • Blackboard has a lot extra features in modules that can be downloaded and installed by the administrator that can make your instance unique to any other school.
  • Blackboard is very helpful and quick to provide a solution when there is an issue. The technical support is fantastic and are always willing to help you with any issue.
  • The mathematical functions in Blackboard are weak and hard to use for our math instructors. Most people don't even know that a whiteboard containing mathematical functions exists and when they do learn, it is so confusing that the instructor gives up.
  • The mathematical calculations in the Grade Center are weak. It does not take into account the null values so the averages are sometimes skewed. I have to remind instructors that they have to put a zero into the null value or their averages will not be correct. It is also very difficult if an instructor wants to create an average, then add them together and then average the total points. In other words, if the instructors wans to do anything besides a basic class average, it requires quite a bit of work.
  • The browser compatibility issues need a lot of work. Most of our students expect to use Internet Explorer and then have a lot of issues with Blackboard, or Java does an update and everything doesn't work like it should. Blackboard needs to find a better, faster way of keeping up with the updates in browsers and Java. Our students get frustrated, and I get frustrated, when I have to constantly remind them to use a browser other than Internet Explorer.
  • Blackboard claims that it is customizable however to make the "look and feel" of the Learning Management System unique is very limited. The log in screen is customizable however doing so is difficult and requires some coding knowledge. Although I have managed to customize our log in screen (because I am a software engineer), I have spoken with a lot of other schools who did not have someone on staff who could write code for the customization.
The first question I ask is, "what are they planning to use it for"? I believe the number of users will make a difference in whether or not they should use Blackboard. Blackboard is a very robust system and may not be needed for a small amount of users. It would not be cost effective and using an open source system like Moodle, may be a better [option]. I also would have to look at who they have on staff. Blackboard is a great LMS out of the box and provides a lot of support if there is an issue. Some of the other LMSs do not have the same kind of support. For example, Moodle has no support so unless they have an expert on staff, they could run into issues that would be difficult to manage or repair.
Read Annaliza Marks's full review
Eric Lech profile photo
September 28, 2015

Blackboard Learn: "Blackboard Review"

Score 4 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
In my previous position, we were using Blackboard Learn through a consortium with Blended Schools Network to build a Virtual Academy for at risk students.
  • Blackboard allowed for easy import and export of content from publishers like test generation in the Exam View Suite.
  • The integration of Blackboard with Turn It In was also a positive of its use in the K-12 setting.
  • Blackboard required significant training for new users to set up classes and incorporate their own content.
  • The user management was a bit cumbersome, but this may have been due to Blended Schools restrictions.
I think it is a robust learning management system, but with the development of some newer and easier to use tools, it is no longer a top choice for me.
Read Eric Lech's full review
James Gurney profile photo
March 13, 2015

Blackboard Learn: "Blackboard Review- Chalk and Eraser?"

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Blackboard was used as an online resource for courses in all departments at the University of Georgia. It served as a tool to disseminate syllabi, course readings, handouts, Power Point slides, notes, and study guides. It also allowed instructors to create discussion boards for students to share their thoughts, questions, and comments regarding course topics. Some instructors used Blackboard as a means for collecting written assignments and administering quizzes. Finally, it served as an online database for grades and course progress. It addressed several problems, including: handing out readings/course packets, administering quizzes, and making sure that students had a safe space for sharing their comments with their peers as well as with their instructors.
  • The email service in Blackboard allowed teachers to send group messages to the entire class very easily.
  • The discussion board feature of Blackboard helped facilitate group discussion and gave students who may have been shy in class or did not think of a comment in time a place to share their thoughts.
  • The grade book feature of Blackboard allowed students to quickly access their progress in the course.
  • Posting slides and presentation notes allowed students to come to class more prepared.
  • The email service operated only within Blackboard. In order to have messages forwarded out of the system, one needed to change the settings. This led to a number of emails being lost, especially when students were not familiar with the system.
  • Posting course readings online could be problematic because students would not take the time to read articles on their computer or devices. Hard copies tended to get better results.
  • Discussion boards could sometimes be hard to track. Replies to user comments could get lost in the board, resulting in a lack of response.
Blackboard is particularly well suited for a class that meets in person. When used as a supplement to in-person meetings, Blackboard can be a very strong resource because of the announcement section and the ability to create discussion boards. However, for classes that only hold online meetings, Blackboard sometimes proves lacking because of the inability to add video/audio recordings for lectures. Purely online classes become more like an online reading club than a true class.
Read James Gurney's full review
Karen Ratliff, Ed.D profile photo
September 18, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard Brand"

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Blackboard is being used by my organization because students and teachers use Blackboard to facilitate curriculum and learn curriculum.
  • Blackboard is easy to navigate
  • Blackboard allows teachers to move back and forth between various screens.
  • Blackboard provides faculty and staff with email access through the university.
  • Blackboard provides tutorials on how to navigate the system.
  • Blackboard does not provide regular software updates. I've used Blackboard for the past eight years and not a lot has changed.
Read Karen Ratliff, Ed.D's full review
Karl Plesz profile photo
January 24, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "It may be great for some, but it has been a nightmare for us"

Score 2 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
Blackboard is being used to deliver webinars to customers both within the education system and for corporate clients. It allows for clients to participate in training without having to travel to a classroom. The business problems it addresses include clients' inability to get to training; overhead associated with physical classrooms; and flexibility for content delivery.
  • Students can speak to the class if they have the correct hardware. This allows for a two-way conversation, when applicable.
  • Students can virtually raise their hand, add emoticons to the chat and vote with canned answers. This makes up for the students' inability to always send audio.
  • It's relatively easy to switch between pre-loaded content (slides) and a live share of your desktop. This makes it easier to give examples of the concept you're teaching.
  • They need to find a way to eliminate the need for java. This is by far the biggest obstacle for the successful delivery of a webinar.
  • The ability to use Blackboard on any platform is a must now, including mobile devices.
  • There needs to be a way to monitor the quality of the internet connection as the moderator / instructor. We often have quality issues and drop-outs with no way of knowing what is at fault.
If you intend to use this in a closed network environment where the type of network connection, network speed and reliability can be known and controlled, this will work. The same applies to computer platform, browser brand and version, java version, etc. Otherwise, there are too many unknown and uncontrollable variables to make Blackboard guaranteed to work each time.
Read Karl Plesz's full review
Darin Nolan profile photo
December 20, 2014

Blackboard Learn: "Reaching students in a virtual online learning environment through Blackboard Collaborate"

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
I currently use Blackboard Collaborate with my online teaching position at Insight School of Washington. We use Blackboard Collaborate as our live classroom with students. Students are required to attend a minimum of 1 hour of class connect time (Blackboard Collaborate). Each week we have a staff meeting that is also held in Blackboard Collaborate. Using Blackboard Collaborate allows our staff to connect with our students in a live environment.
  • Blackboard allows teachers to present content to our online students by uploading PowerPoint presentations.
  • Blackboard is a great tool for students to interact in a safe online environment.
  • Blackboard has the ability for teachers to share their desktop and occupy a students desktop to help students with their academics and computer problems.
  • Blackboard has the ability for teachers to share documents and websites live with students.
  • On many occasions the Blackboard website has been down or our connection to Blackboard is disrupted at ISWA.
  • Some platforms such as Mac Yosemite is not compatible with uploading PowerPoints. You have to upload your PowerPoint as an Open Office document.
  • Blackboard could be better by making the tools more user friendly.
Blackboard Collaborate is well suited for online schools to connect with their students. The tools within Blackboard need to be more user friendly for students. Some of the functions of Blackboard are limited. There can sometimes be a lag when sharing your desktop with students or a website. Loading the application can also take a lot of time. A person needs to make sure they have the most current version of Java installed on their computer to run Blackboard Collaborate.
Read Darin Nolan's full review
Jessie Mead profile photo
December 18, 2014

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboarding the Waves"

Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source
The entire organization is using Blackboard as a calendar, event, and task planning tool. It addresses having assignments and keeping track of all information org-wide.
  • Time Management
  • Task Management
  • Interoffice communication
  • Email communications
Greatly suited for the education industry and any industry that heavily uses assignments, deadlines, and training material. Ease of use is an extremely important factor, as well as mobile usability.
Read Jessie Mead's full review
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December 12, 2014

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard 9.1"

Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
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Blackboard is used on our campus as the online course delivery and management system. It is also used by instructors not teaching online as a repository for notes and quizzes and as a way to communicate assignments due to class cancellations or school closure. Since this community college is located in a largely rural area with major universities some distance away, Blackboard provides the opportunity for students to continue their education while working full-time. It also allows instructors to be more creative with their course content and bring visual content into their assignments that students can do asynchronously.
  • Customizable
  • Easier to Navigate
  • More streamlined
  • Unable to use certain web browsers, for example, IE.
  • Unable to print from certain browsers
  • Students have problems uploading documents or creating a thread
Unfortunately, working for a SUNY school, we weren't really given a choice. This CMS was mandated by SUNY to be implemented by all SUNY schools.
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Inez Whipple profile photo
February 15, 2014

Blackboard Learn Review: "No Chalk Dust Here"

Score 8 out of 10
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The college uses Blackboard to develop and deliver online, hybrid, and face-to-face courses for students. We also use it for faculty and staff training. It is the only learning management system used at the college and has been used here for quite a few years. It helps us keep our course content together and allows documentation for grades and communications between faculty and students.
  • It's super easy to use. Blackboard was originally developed for K-12 users and requires very little student training. It's mostly point and click for students. Faculty do need some in-depth training, but it's the simplest LMS I've used.
  • It's the biggest educational LMS, so they have a ton of experience in dealing with clients and IT departments. Our recent migrations and upgrades looked seamless from my POV - i.e. as someone not involved in the process.
  • They provide a lots of training resources for students and faculty on their YouTube site.
  • The biggest thing that annoys me about Blackboard is the HTML editor. It picks up the propriety code from Microsoft documents and adds it into the background of the text when you copy and paste from a MS product. This code slows down loading times for students which is especially important during timed testing and faculty don't even know they're doing it. I've seen test questions with at least 5 pages of code attached to it and another 3 pages attached to EACH question. Multiply that by 50 or 100 questions and it can really slow a student down. Blackboard really needs a "Copy from Word" button to strip this code.
  • I would love to use the module tool, however, it adds a Table of Contents that steals a ton of real estate from the screen. It would be great if that could be minimized.
  • The gradebook is terrible to use, but I haven't seen something better anywhere.
  • It's super expensive
Blackboard is probably best for institutions that are either really big or really small. Better options exist, but you really need to employ programmers to make them good, so it's usually not an option for smaller schools.
Read Inez Whipple's full review
Angel Dawkins profile photo
February 24, 2014

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard is A-OK!"

Score 8 out of 10
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Blackboard was used by the organization I worked for previously as the primary system for the online classroom. It was used across the entire organization to facilitate learning and communication between students and faculty members. IT staff such as myself also had access to it to support users when technical issues arose. The Blackboard platform created a more streamlined and easy-to-use classroom for the students; much better than previous versions.
  • Blackboard allows users to communicate with each other very well. Communication is one of the most important factors in an online classroom, and through the use of the Mail tool, Discussion boards, and the Gradebook, students were able to have easy access to their instructors and speak back and forth freely.
  • Blackboard integrated support tools such as TurnItIn very well also. Having modules such as TurnItIn integrated into the classroom interface gave instructors the help they needed to make sure students were completing their work ethically. Having the flexibility to add these types of tools as needed is a great strength for Blackboard.
  • Blackboard's administrative options are also a strength, I believe, because as a support analyst, I needed to be able to see what my users were seeing. Blackboard allowed us to see both the student and faculty view to best assist both of these types of users when they encountered problems in the classroom.
  • During my time as a support analyst, many users would complain that the online classroom timed out entirely too quickly. Now as an IT professional, I understand that timeout is completely necessary for the safety and security of the user's account, but perhaps a longer timeout period could be set as a compromise.
  • Integration with Java functionality was always a huge problem with users, especially when new versions came out. They would be unable to add attachments, use the HTML creator, and sometimes have issues with viewing Grades as well. Now some of this could possibly be attributed to user error, but perhaps the use of another tool that is not as volatile as Java would be of better use in the online classroom.
I honestly don't think there are any specific scenarios where the Blackboard Learn platform would be inappropriate, especially for an online classroom. It is highly customizable which can be a great option for certain clients and is a bit more friendly than other platforms such as Desire 2 Learn.
Read Angel Dawkins's full review
George Browne, CNE, CNA, MOS profile photo
February 21, 2014

Blackboard Learn Review: "The Blackboard LMS - A BB 9.X Coordinator's Thumbnail Overview."

Score 8 out of 10
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Greetings,

Blackboard is being used at my campus as a learning resource for students and a "Best Practices" collaborative platform for educators. Blackboard is not only being used at our campus, but it is used throughout the entire district with thousands of courses being implemented for learning by students and professionals. It is an online resource that our students and parent enjoy and appreciate.
  • Frame content. It is fairly painless to upload content and then make it live for end-users.
  • Is user friendly. it is relatively intuitive and easy to navigate.
  • As a online course interface it is very appealing to our students who find the GUI simple and effective in delivering concepts.
  • It could be better in the area of delivering animated graphics and video streams.
  • Having an integrated instant messaging component would be very helpful.
  • It would be great if the screen real estate was more "free form" and not locked into the BB standard frame.
Great for online course delivery and faculty collaboration; not such a great tool for "real-time" lectures or content delivery.
Read George Browne, CNE, CNA, MOS's full review
Tina Marie Gonzales, MBA | MIS profile photo
December 17, 2013

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard for the win!"

Score 10 out of 10
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  • Easy to Navigate.
  • Gives notifications on log-in.
  • Classes and relevant information is seen on log-in.
  • Grade, posts, and other notifications do not automatically deactivate when clicked. The notification stays there. It takes several clicks to clear. Suggestion would be to make it a one-click deactivation for notifications.
  • Some notifications at log-in can not be dismissed. Please allow all notifications to be dismissed by users.
Blackboard provides everything that is needed to be a successful user. This includes the admin side where you just upload a document, create courses, and add content. There is no huge mess that is left. The learning curve is small, but well worth it. I was able to learn the system within days. It's a very effective and efficient program.
Read Tina Marie Gonzales, MBA | MIS's full review
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September 23, 2016

Blackboard Learn Review: "Sadly, we can no longer advocate for Blackboard"

Score 5 out of 10
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Sadly, we finally left Blackboard this year. We used it at this institution successfully for many years, and I used it at my previous position for many years. At one time, I truly believed in the product, and was relatively happy with the support we received, and with the way the company itself was working on behalf of its customers, and education in general.
We became disheartened after the company was sold, people in key positions were let go or constantly moved around, and our support began to dwindle. Obviously we were not the only ones, as we saw a dramatic decrease in market share, and many institutions such as ours leaving Blackboard.
May I also say that I never missed a chance to attend and present at regional user group meetings, as well as all the Blackboard World conferences, and I even co-founded, and single-handedly managed the Virginia Blackboard Users Group for six years. That's how strongly I once believed in Blackboard.
  • While we were using Blackboard, I thought they, at one point, were very collaborative with their customer base, even to the point of creating product development panels...users who could help them develop and evolve the product.
  • I am sad to say that Blackboard simply became a commodity to be sold around. Good people lost jobs. Support waned. Prices soared. And no one really cared.
I think until Blackboard is once again owned and cared for by a customer-oriented company, it will continue to decline until it implodes.
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September 17, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard is Good, Not Great!"

Score 8 out of 10
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My institution utilizes Blackboard in all three of our colleges for undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs. It is utilized in web-enhanced, blended and fully online courses for content delivery and teacher-to-student and student-to-student collaboration. The product is also integrated with Blackboard Collaborate for synchronous communication, Respondus for test-generation purposes, and Turnitin for plagiarism detection.
  • The product engages students well with the course content being studied.
  • The product engages students in a community of learners with various educational technologies.
  • The product allows educators to interact with their students in online courses so that they feel as if a real person is behind the posted course information and content.
  • Blackboard Support representatives should be more knowledgeable of their products. This is detrimental during busy times throughout the academic year.
  • Software add-ons are not always functional and easily integrated with the platform.
  • The Grade Center layout and options do not allow for full customization by the instructor (attendance capability, using personalized calculation formulas, etc.).
The system should be user-friendly for all parties involved (this includes students, faculty and administrators). Support should also be available at all times for all parties involved (this includes students, faculty and administrators). Without proper support in place by both Blackboard (the company) and the institution (for faculty and student support), the product should not used or advertised by the institution.
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September 15, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard - Value proposition declines as Canvas LMS becomes more mature."

Score 7 out of 10
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Blackboard is used as a course management system on campus at our institution. It's utilized for courses, training, and special projects. It allows instructors to teach online as well as provide online materials, assignments, and exams for on-campus or hybrid courses. It is being used as a training method for some training programs and initiatives on campus to provide course materials and asynchronous training as well as a supplement to face-to-face training. For special initiatives and projects, this is being used to collaborate and communicate with team members.
  • Blackboard provides a service where you can lock down content to a particular audience, which is very useful for coursework.
  • Blackboard has a large number of features, which allows instructors to implement their course in whatever way they see fit. Many less mature products on the market today do not have quite as many features.
  • Blackboard is a mature product, with years of experience in the LMS market. When implementing a product with less maturity, it's more difficult to gauge whether or not there will be significant changes in the future for products and/or company structure.
  • Blackboard's interface is old and clunky. They are developing a new "Ultra" experience, but it's only available to a very limited number of customers. This old design makes it less than pleasant for sophisticated web users, and students are becoming more sophisticated in their usage of online technology.
  • Blackboard does have a feature rich environment, however these features are often overly complicated and buggy. Blackboard needs to work on making their system more easy to use and get out of the way to allow instructors to teach.
  • Administrator visibility and statistics are available... for an extra fee. Many institutions cannot afford to increase their licensing costs, so Blackboard needs to find out a way to make some useful information available in their core product for no additional fees.
  • Increased integration with "the cloud" such as OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, and the like would make it much easier for students to submit assignments, and for instructors to add content to their courses.
Blackboard is well suited to customers who wish to remain conservative in their software offerings at their institution. Blackboard's been around for a long time, and will likely continue to be around a long time. It offers basic LMS functionality, and it's relatively simple to keep the same content from semester to semester. It will definitely do all of the things you'd expect an LMS to do.

If you're offering large seat classes where you're using the gradebook, giving exams, and the like... Blackboard historically has struggled with that. Also, if you don't have someone on campus to write integrations for you (plug-ins, data process), you may have to spend extra dollars to contract a third party to create integrations. If you want to easily integrate content from cloud resources, Blackboard's getting there but is behind other LMS offerings. If you want a state-of-the-art interface that will attract potential students, Blackboard has been slow to keep their interfaces to that standard.
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September 15, 2015

Review: "Blackboard Learn and their Managed Hosting architecture works!"

Score 9 out of 10
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Blackboard is used across the entire university and is an integral part of every college. Blackboard is used for things as simple as electronic file delivery and emailing students, and as complex as 100% online course delivery.
  • Blackboard is very easy for novice technology users to pick up and begin to build a course. They have really expanded on their online help documentation over the last couple years to facilitate new users to the product.
  • It is very easy to integrate Blackboard with our SIS system for automatic course creation and enrollment adds and drops. We have automated everything and have little to no hands-on for higher administrative tasks.
  • Behind the Blackboard Support is quick to respond when tickets are opened requesting software updates, application bugs, usage questions, etc.
  • One major flaw in Blackboard Learn is their Software Updates module. This module is supposed to allow hosted customers, such as ourselves, to be able to apply updates to the software on our own time. Unfortunately, almost every update has this disclaimer: "Managed Hosting clients should create a case on Behind the Blackboard to schedule the recommended server restarts after Building Blocks are updated. To expedite the scheduling process, please include a desired day and time for the restarts to begin." The Software Updates module is pointless if we can't run those updates ourselves.
  • There are little issues that pop up on occasion, such as template colors on new courses occasionally not being set correctly and odd error messages that could be a bit more detailed, but all in all, the application has been very bug free for us since we moved to Managed Hosting (Blackboard's hosting service) in 2013.
  • Blackboards mobile applications are fairly bare-boned and don't offer anything more than what you can get via a mobile web browser.
Blackboard has been a very stable and heavily utilized product for us. SIS integration was fairly easy between Blackboard and Banner and allows a seamless automation of course creations and enrollment adds and drops.

One area that a potential customer would want to look into is Blackboard's mobile applications and future development in this area, to see if what they currently offer is satisfactory for the customers needs, since this is one area Blackboard needs to improve upon.
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September 22, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Blackboard works"

Score 7 out of 10
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Blackboard Learn is being utilized by our entire University to deliver fully online, blended, and face-to-face courses. Faculty use it to deliver content, assessments and communications with their students. It also facilitates asynchronous online student collaboration.
  • Integrates seamlessly with many external vendors, services, & content providers.
  • Provides a robust set of tools.
  • Enables complex grading schemes.
  • Allows for a highly organized content structure.
  • Needs responsive design for mobile users.
  • Course copy process often breaks html based modules.
Highly suited to large organizations needing a full featured learning management platform.
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September 25, 2015

Blackboard Learn Review: "Think twice before you approach the Blackboard."

Score 4 out of 10
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It is being used across the entire organization to support Online Education for the the entire Organization. It also helps up organize our academics.
  • It was easy for the end-user to accomplish tasks.
  • It would extend to outside resources well.
  • The backend software was almost unmanageable.
  • Updates were poorly tested and often ended in downtime.
  • Even Blackboard Managed Services has difficulity maintaining uptime.
There are several other products that should be investigated before investing in Blackboard.
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About Blackboard Learn

Blackboard Inc. is an enterprise learning management systems vendor. Blackboard was founded in 1997 and became a public company in 2004. The company provides education, mobile, communication, and commerce software and related services to clients including education providers, corporations and government organizations. As of December 2010, Blackboard software and services are used by over 9,300 institutions in more than 60 countries. Blackboard Learn is the company's flagship LMS, supporting course management, test & assessment design and administration, and is extensible via Blackboard's suite of addable modules.

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Blackboard Learn Technical Details

Operating Systems: Unspecified
Mobile Application:No