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Blackboard - Frequently Asked Questions and Known Issues

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Note: If you are experiencing a problem not reported here, please submit a ticket to ithelp@grcc.edu

Recent Changes to Blackboard and Known System Issues

Browsers:

  1. KNOWN ISSUE: The Firefox browser cut, copy, or paste buttons do not work and the user is prompted to use the shortcup keyboard commands.  The reason for this is because by default, Javascript is not allowed to read or set your clipboard data for security and privacy reasons.  This is because website scripts can erase and replace what you currently have in your clipboard (data loss issue) and they can read whatever you have in your clipboard (security and privacy issue)."  Here is a Firefox Knowledgebase article.
  2. KNOWN ISSUE: The line spacing when typing and submitting an email to students looks fine when viewed by the instructor, however, after submitting and receiving an email the line spacing is expanded causing extra white space.  This issue has been reported to Blackboard support and it is being addressed for resolution.

Grade Center:

  1. KNOWN ISSUE: The issue where test attempts do not indicate when an override grade exists is a previously reported issue that will be resolved in 9.1 service pack 10 and can be tracked as LRN-51492.
  2. KNOWN ISSUE: The scroll bars do not show in the Blackboard Grade Center. There is a setting in Windows which may be affecting the display of scroll bars. To fix this issue and bring back the scroll bars, in Windows 7, go to the Control Panel and click on Appearance and Personalization. In the search box in the upper right hand corner, type in windows colors, from the list that appears, click on Change window colors and metrics. Then, select scrollbar from the drop down menu, and change the size to a number less than 20, 17 or 18 is perfect. Click OK when you are done. If you want to print step-by-step instructions with screenshots, open this tip sheet pdf.

Course Reports:

  1. KNOWN ISSUE: The course and item reports that provide statistics on what students are accessing the documents and the course are currently not working.  A ticket has been filed with Blackboard and it is being addressed for resolution.

 

FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions

1. How to I enroll a TA or another instructor into my course?
Student enrollment is automated, however, the ability to add another instructor is possible using the My Courses module.  To add another instructor to your course you would need to use the "Edit User Enrollments" featre in the My Courses module.

    Add User Tip Sheet

    Add User Video

2. Why can't I login? Just yesterday I could login just fine, but today I can't.
The most usual cause is an expired password. Please contact the IT Support Help Desk for assistance in resetting your password.

3. Where is my content? Where are my old courses? & How long will my course stay on the system?
Blackboard courses are kept on the server for 1 year.  Courses are deleted after final grades are due on the following year. Current semester courses are set to available so students have access, however, OLD courses are set to unavailable which prevents students from accessing the site . Courses can not be deleted under the instructor role.

4. How do I copy my course?  & What is the best way to reuse materials from one semester into the next semester?
Course Copy allows you to easily copy course documents, tests, assignments, gradebook entries, and discussion board information between semesters. Course copy is available in the control panel.

  Course Copy Tip Sheet

5. How can I save course or gradebook information after my course is done?
The best way to backup your course is to use the Export or Archive Course function in the control panel. (Save the file from the export to your computer.) To save a record of grades for students, use the Download Grades function in the Gradebook (Under the "Work Offline" button and "Download".)

   Download Grades Tip Sheet

   Download Grades Video

6. Why does my course say "unavailable"?
Unavailable means that the course is not available to students. That is, they cannot see the course when they login to Blackboard. Course availability is maintained through automation but can be adjusted by instructors through the My Courses module. Semester based courses are automatically made available on the semester start date.

   Course Availability Tip sheet

   Course Availability Video

7. How do I provide students feedback on their grades?
To ensure students see your feedback you can add quick comments to assignments or test and students will see them when they log in and look at their grades.

   Student Feedback Video

8. A student is enrolled in my class yet they don't show up.
The most likely cause is that the system automation hasn't caught up yet. Course enrollments are synchronized every 2 hours but it can take up to 4 hours.  Contact the IT Support Help Desk if you believe there is an issue.

9. How do I create tests?
To create a test please click on the link below and follow the instructions

  Create a Test Tip Sheet

10. How do I import a test bank from my publisher?
Each publisher has a different format and software they use for distributing test bank questions. DLIT will do our best to assist you, but technical support issues related to test banks need to be directed back to the publisher. In general, you want to request a test bank that will be compatible with Blackboard version 9.1. View the video below for information on importing tests, not matter what software your publisher provides you with, you will need a *.zip file to import a test into Blackboard.

   Exporting and Importing Tests Video

11. How do I use my gradebook?
Please check out the video tutorial, it will explain some Grade Center basics.

   Blackboard Grade Center Video

12. How do I grade an assignment?
To give an assignment a grade, please click on the link below to see a tip sheet on how to do this.

   Enter Grades Tip sheet

13. How do I create an assignment?
To create an assignment, please watch our video tutorial.

    Grade Center  - Assignments Video

14. How do I send text message to my students?
When you are in your course in Blackboard, click the Course Tools drop down in the control panel and select "Professor Notification Tool".  From there you can send an SMS message to students that have entered their mobile number into the system. NOTE: In order to use this tool students will need to enter their phone number into the "Mobile Preferences" area in the Tools panel.  More information about Blackbaord Connect is available here.

   Bb Connect Tip Sheet

   Bb Connect Video

15. When I try to login, I get an error message.
Here are the most common error messages and solutions to them.

  • An error occurred while the system was processing this login request.
    • This error occurs when your username cannot be located in Blackboard. Double check your spelling of your username, or contact the IT Support Help Desk for assistance. 
  • Could not login. Valid authentication credentials were not provided.
    • This error occurs when you have entered an invalid, incorrect, or expired password. . Double check your spelling of your password, or contact the IT Support Help Desk for assistance. 
  • There was a problem with this login request. Contact the system administrator.
    • This problem typically occurs if your browser is set to not allow cookies, or you are not logging in from the "front page" of Blackboard. Go to: http://bb.grcc.edu and try to login again. If you continue to have problems, ensure that cookies are enabled in your browser. 
  • An error occurred in the authentication module: Error occurred while trying to lookup the current session.
    • This error is typically displayed when there is a problem with cookies in your browser. Your browser must be able to accept a cookie in order to use Blackboard.
      • If you are using Internet Explorer, please use these steps to enable cookies:
        1) Select Tools > Internet Options
        2) Select the Privacy Tab
        3) Click the "Sites" button
        4) In the, "Address of Web site" field, enter bb.grcc.edu, and click the Allow button.
      • This error can also occur when personal firewalls are installed on your computer. For example: Zone Alarm, McAfee Personal Firewall, Norton Personal Firewall, and others. Please use the configuration settings in these tools to allow cookies, or to set bb.grcc.edu as a trusted host.
  • No Authentication credentials were provided with the request.
    • This error is displayed when active scripting is not enabled on your computer.
      • If you are using Internet Explorer, please follow these steps to enable active scripting:
        1) Select Tools > Internet Options
        2) Select the Security Tab
        3) Select the Internet Zone and then click the Custom Level button
        4) Scroll down until you reach the Scripting section, and ensure Active Scripting is enabled.