Blackboard Learn Reviews

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166 Ratings
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Score 7.9 out of 100

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Becca Guler | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Accepts wide variety of file types.
  • Choice of layout options to fit different styles of courses.
  • Interface isn't very modern.
  • Low use of icons and heavy text make it tricky to navigate.
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Anissa Harris | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Pros and Cons

  • Provides HTML quality course content that is easily retrievable and viewable.
  • Provides multiple methods of communication: email, threaded discussions, real-time "live" online discussions, as well as grade portal.
  • Allows facilitators multiple methods of grading or providing feedback: threaded discussions, rubric scoring, personal comments, inline viewer, or download/upload attachments.
  • Mobile access to Blackboard Learn is rudimentary and inconsistent. I can open the website in any browser but I cannot always click on the right control column--it sometimes moves around or buttons jump so that I cannot actually complete basic functions like posting a DQ. With asynchronous teaching, it is imperative that I have function-able mobile access to Blackboard in order to be successful.
  • The existing Blackboard Learn app for instructors is completely BASIC and needs much improvement. There is no ability to enhance text or use bold or italics. I can provide inline grading comments but cannot use a bank of grading comments--no copy/paste works in the inline grading of the app. I cannot grade discussion questions AT ALL in the app--only papers.
  • The Blackboard Learn instructor app needs to be compatible with voice commands so that I can use voice-to-text rather than typing everything on a mobile device. There is a lot of room for improvement but the app is crucial to my ability to teach effectively with Blackboard.
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Renee DiBiasio | TrustRadius Reviewer
January 21, 2020

An excellent product

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • It is really easy to create and save lists.
  • Multiple types of communications can be sent at one time.
  • It is not the easiest tool for people not as technology savvy to navigate.
  • Training is needed to master all the features.
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Nicolas Hanhan | TrustRadius Reviewer
January 12, 2020

User-friendly LMS

Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Creating effective assessments such as quizzes and assignments.
  • Make collaboration easier through group work and discuss board posts.
  • Online grading may need improvement through adding new features.
  • In the grade center instructors need to go into manage organization in order to arrange and reorder columns. It would be nice to be able to move columns around as in an Excel sheet.
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Amy Westby | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Course content management.
  • Communication with students.
  • Scheduling assignments and class discussions.
  • More third party features, beyond Google Suite.
  • Connecting to our SIS can be tricky at times.
  • The mobile app could use some smoothing out.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 1 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Blackboard does a great job at displaying grades. I have the app and it is so simply to view one's class grades.
  • Blackboard also does a good job at providing a place where students and professors are able to easily upload work documents.
  • Another place where Blackboard thrives in is being accessible. That is, being able to access it anywhere an internet connection is available. No need to download an application and once you're logged in, you're good to go.
  • .
  • .
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Document retrieval.
  • Uploading work.
  • Forums with other students.
  • VoiceThread is cumbersome.
  • I would appreciate the ability to access suggested resources beyond those provided by the professor.
  • It would be good if we could see our classmates' submissions to learn from them.
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Katherine Moore | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Easy to use tabs to get to different sections of the courses
  • Easy to communicate directly with the educator and other students through messaging.
  • Easy to submit assignments directly by uploading.
  • The mobile Blackboard app is not easy to use on my Android phone as the sizing is off and some functions do not work.
  • The discussion threads are a little more difficult to navigate, between replying to the current thread or needing to start a new one.
  • The grades section is not always correctly updated on my end even though the educator has posted them.
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Timothy Sawah | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
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Pros and Cons

  • Instructors can easily customize the course page.
  • It has the capability to do online exams, class discussions, automatic grading, and live sessions.
  • Integrates with local LDAP and single sign-on services.
  • Although the current graphic user interface is easy to use, it can be improved with larger fonts, dynamic menus, and attractive graphics.
  • The system does not include a module to pay the school fee.
  • The roster tab lacks detailed information about students.
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Matthew Deakyne | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Number of Integrations. Up until fairly recently, Blackboard Learn was the only option that scaled well for an institution of our size. They purchased competitors, and dominated marketshare. Due to this, most integrations from publishers or other educational technologies had to create a Blackboard integration.
  • Adapting to Web Standards. Blackboard is currently releasing REST APIs and LTI integrations, and encouraging these as the standards moving forward. This is an excellent direction, and will allow Blackboard to be more competitive in the future.
  • Customization. Each Blackboard course can be fully customized by the Instructor, using as much or as little as each individual instructor would like. For those that enjoy complete control - this is really useful.
  • Self-Hosted Option. I anticipate this to eventually be depreciated, but currently we can host our Blackboard instance - which grants full flexibility and data analysis capabilities that are not available in the managed or cloud hosted options.
  • Lack of APIs. Blackboard is catching up, but other competitors are much further along since those competitors started as a web-based company. The other factor holding these back is the different hosting options. All APIs are available for cloud-hosted, but not for managed-hosted or self-hosted.
  • Lack of defaults. While highly configurable, Blackboard is really intimidating for instructors used to default course structures. You can lock this down, but our users enjoy the customizability - which causes issues providing for both values. Instructors have multiple ways to do tasks - and often there isn't a clear pathway.
  • Lack of focus on core. Blackboard keeps releasing new products : Analytics (usage), Transact (purchase / card system), Ally (accessibility), Predict (early warning)... while the core experience lags behind. Blackboard is trying to sell the idea that their stuff works well with their stuff... while competitors keep improving the core system and make integrations easier. Personally, I believe Blackboard needs to refocus on the core competencies.
  • Lack of communication / proactivity. Blackboard relied on an integration with Crocodoc for assignment markup. Crocodoc was purchased and shuttered by Box, who had a general press release a year out. Blackboard worked with Box to replace this functionality - but DID NOT DO A GOOD JOB. Communication on progress was non-existant, it required an unplanned restart, and there was a massive feature loss. We still experience some performance issues, and it's been over a year since the switch.
  • Lack of migration pathway. There are distinct differences between self-hosted and cloud-hosted. The migration path from self hosted to cloud hosted is just as complex as migrating to another LMS. Blackboard has been really pushing cloud-hosted as a better experience, but many institutions of our size have had extreme difficulty migrating and some have ultimately switched to a competitor and had an easier time migrating. If you are considering going to the cloud, Blackboard SaaS will probably be as big of a change as a competitor.
  • Poor Branding. Ultra is a ubiquitous term that Blackboard has settled on, but there are too many Ultras. Ultra was originally the branding for SaaS, a technology that was Vaporware for two years and then ultimately came out half-completed. Then they started offering Collaborate Ultra, Ultra Course View and Ultra Experience. I think there is even now an Ultra theme that is available for Learn Original. They need to find another word, because it's extremely confusing for administrators - let alone instructors.
Read Matthew Deakyne's full review
Mounika Chirasani | TrustRadius Reviewer
February 09, 2019

Great Tool for Learning

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • As a student, I get mobile access and notifications about grades, announcements, and course changes that help me manage my learning.
  • As an instructor, Blackboard lets me integrate a lot of different types of media, structure time released content, vary assessments, and deliver individualized learning opportunities.
  • I also like the Best Practice parts of the help site -- it helps you to get ideas of how you can use the tools.
  • In terms of support from Blackboard.
  • I find it difficult to transfer information from one semester to another.
  • Slow (even when on the same network node or high-speed cable connection) -- needs a code rewrite/optimization.
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Mark Fitzgerald | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • It can be configured to do anything you want.
  • It makes it easier for the students have a common destination for information.
  • I like that I can do all of my assessments and grading in one place.
  • It can be configured to do anything you want. Be careful.
  • Its architecture feels old, but because they support so many schools that are change adverse, it is hard to update.
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Erica Terry | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • The organization of files
  • You can have different tabs to separate items to make it easier for student use
  • Submission of testing and assignments was clear, and easy to use.
  • I did not find anything the software itself could do better, just the way the administrator had the information set up in the courses.
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Mark Nowowiejski | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 5 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • The assignment tool is very helpful, it allows for individual and group assignment submission and can scan all work for originality via the integration of SafeAssign. This feature also acts as a repository for resolving student grade challenges and in collecting data for accreditation efforts.
  • The open HTML features allow for incorporation of video very easily through embed codes or mashup tools
  • Communication - the announcement, emails, discussion boards, and group tools allow enhance the classroom and allow students to stay engaged without the need to know 50 different email addresses.
  • Blackboard ingrates very well with hundred of 3rd party tools either through a building block installion on LTI link. Very help for incorporating publishing content from a textbook for example.
  • The Mobile features off the site and lagging behind, especially if you try to access the site through phone on safari or chrome vs the BB Mobile app.
  • While Blackboard allows for HTML and CSS it has a bad habit of throwing extra tags and other forms 'of junk' HTML after saving that slow down the system and hurt accessibility for screen readers.
  • The UI of BB Learn overall is dated and in major need of modern re-design
  • BB Learn lack a common search feature, mean students have no choice but the hunt and peck around course looking a specfic peice of content.
  • While this may be a result of my version of the system being self-hosted I have found Blackboard to overall be a slower platform than other LMS systems such as Canvas or Coursera
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Brittney Vigna MPH, CHES, CPH | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Blackboard is pretty intuitive to learn. It's not very hard to figure out what you need to do.
  • The assessments are easy to create and easy for students to take. The deadlines are helpful as well.
  • It's nice that there isn't a limit for the content that you are able to put on Blackboard.
  • On Mac specifically, when you pull up the full grade center, for some reason it won't let you scroll over.
  • Deleting everything is SO time consuming. There isn't a way to bulk delete columns for grading.
Read Brittney Vigna MPH, CHES, CPH's full review
Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
February 07, 2019

Blackboard Learn Review

Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Great for online course management.
  • Ease of use for the Registrars, office, and staff.
  • Online learning courses go very, very well for students and faculty.
  • The interface is a little hard to navigate at first.
  • Some of the components for course management are a little clunky compared to competitors.
  • Can be capped out on some course offerings.
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Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
February 23, 2019

Performs as expected

Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • Clear, consistent organization/menus.
  • Communication tools within Blackboard and email.
  • The tools section is overwhelming and a lot of them don't seem useful.
  • Limited functionality of the mobile app.
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Donna Kjellander | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • 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.
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Rachel Hudish | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Pros and Cons

  • 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.
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Feature Scorecard Summary

Course authoring (16)
8.0
Course catalog or library (16)
7.3
Player/Portal (13)
7.3
Learning content (20)
8.2
Mobile friendly (22)
6.3
Progress tracking & certifications (16)
7.6
Assignments (22)
8.4
Compliance management (11)
6.8
Learning administration (17)
8.1
Learning reporting & analytics (18)
6.9
Social learning (15)
6.8

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.

Blackboard Learn Competitors

Blackboard Learn Technical Details

Operating Systems: Unspecified
Mobile Application:No