Blackboard to upgrade

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By Lornna Bates, News editor

Blackboard Learn 9.1 Enterprise, the newest anticipated version of the online learning management system, will be introduced to Southeastern students during the summer 2011 semester.  It will replace the current version used in SE, Bb 7.3 Basic.

Bb Learn 9.1 Enterprise was initially introduced in a preview presentation last week for faculty.  Ellen Hendrix, Bb system administrator for end users, presented the hour and a half long presentation in which she highlighted some of the new features for the instructors present.

Hendrix said she is confident that excitement generated during the meeting will quickly spread throughout the faculty and on to the students.

“Having an LMS (Learning Management System) is ‘mission critical’ to the success of online classes.  Southeastern’s LMS is Blackboard,” said Hendrix.  “It is also an effective teaching and learning tool for face-to-face classes.”

Some of the new features include Safe Assignment, a tool for teachers to utilize to help avoid plagiarism by submitting student research papers into a database to be compared to thousands of other works; the Home Page will consist of modules that will show different aspects of the course content; the Grade Center, which will now make it possible for teachers to automatically provide feedback to the individual student; and student notifications, which will periodically be sent to the students’ through e-mail, notifying of updates or changes.

Perhaps the most important change for students will be the Bb Mobile Learn Application.  This can be downloaded at no cost to your iPad, iPhone, iTouch, Android and Blackberry mobile devices.  The device must be Wifi connected or connected through the Sprint service with a 3g or 4g cellular data plan.

This will be available during summer session of 2011, at the beginning of the semester along with the induction of the Bb Learn 9.1 Enterprise system.

Hendrix did mention that she is in conversations with Matt Heggy, SGA president, regarding introducing Bb 9.1 to the students before the end of the spring semester.

In the meantime, you can learn more about Bb 9.1 by visiting www.blackboard.com.

To participate in video tutorials for both faculty and students, visit http://homepages.se.edu/blackboard/.

Another way to access the learning tools are to visit the SE homepage and click on any of the banners for Bb Learn 9.1 Enterprise and you will be automatically directed to a tutorial and informational site for Bb.