Monday, October 7, 2013

Current Blackboard Issues and Solutions


There are a few issues with our current Blackboard system that I wanted to call to your attention, as well as offer possible solutions. Below is a listing of those issues along with appropriate resource information. Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this email.

Assignment Inline Grader
The inline grader is the new feature in the Assignment tool that lets you grade student papers without downloading them. If you haven’t used this new feature in the Assignment tool, here’s a brief video:

Issue #1: Please note that the inline grade will only work with the following file types: MS Word (DOC, DOCX), PowerPoint (PPT, PPTX), Excel (XLS, XLSX), and PDF (PDF). If students submit their assignments using anything other than the file types mentioned above, you will not be able to annotate on their assignment.

Issue #2: Please note that it is recommended that your students save their assignments using straight-forward filenames that are free of spaces and symbols (e.g., JpetersAssignment1). If students submit assignments with filenames including spaces and symbols, they may not be viewable in the inline grader (View this link for additional resource information:

Can’t Copy and Paste
The new content editor in Blackboard does not allow you to copy information using your mouse right-click controls. If you want to copy information into a Blackboard content editor you will need to use the Windows or Mac short-cuts (i.e., Ctrl-C to copy, Ctrl-V to paste for Windows users and Cmd-C and Cmd-V for Macintosh users).

Issue: Mozilla Firefox version 22 and above won’t even allow you to copy using the windows short-cuts. In order to copy and paste using these versions of Firefox, you’ll need to make the following modifications to your browser settings:
1.      In a new Firefox tab, type or paste about:config in the address bar and press Enter. Click the button promising to be careful.
2.      In the Search box at the top, type or paste clipb and pause while the list is filtered
3.      Double-click dom.event.clipboardevents.enabled to switch its value from true to false.

After following the steps above, shut down your browse and then re-launch it to initiate the setting changes. If you need help with this, let me.

Discussion Board Postings Not Appearing
Issue: Some students have reported that they can’t view certain discussion postings in their course. This may be related to some students copying and pasting their postings from MS Word into Blackboard. If this happens to you or your students, follow these steps:

There seems to be a problem with certain browser versions and not being able to view discussion postings that have been copied from Microsoft Word. In order to overcome this issue, do the following:

1.  Check the checkbox to the left of each discussion posting that isn’t appearing
2.  Click the Collect button on the action bar
3.  The postings you selected should render on a new page and should be readable

Here’s a video tutorial for collecting posts:

Again, if you have any questions or need further assistance with any of the issues noted above, please don’t hesitate to contact me.


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