As many new faculty, teaching staff, and TAs may request course space on Blackboard this week and get ready to develop their courses on Blackboard, the following useful links and reminders are provided for some of the “beginning of the semester” frequently asked questions:
- Requesting a new course on Blackboard – After logging into http://webcourses.niu.edu click the “Services” tab at the top of the page and then “Blackboard Faculty Tools”. Click “My Courses” and then follow the links on the displayed window. Instructions and step-by-step tutorials can be found at: http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/start/request.shtml. In order to request a Blackboard course, individuals must be the “instructor of record” for the course in the MyNIU system.Course space requests take 1 working day to be processed by the automated process in DoIT. It takes an additional day for someone newly assigned as instructor of record in MyNIU to have permission to request the course in Blackboard.
- Combining course sections – Those teaching dual level courses (e.g. 400 and 500 or cross-listed courses) or multiple sections may want to combine their sections into one master course. Information about doing that can also be found at http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/start/multiplesections.shtml.”Course combine requests” also take 1 working day to be processed. Individuals requesting master courses must be instructor of record in both sections to be combined.
- Making courses “available” to students – After creating and posting documents on a Blackboard courses, faculty should make those courses “available” to students. Otherwise, students will not be able to see the courses. The instructions for making courses “available” to students can be found at: http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/start/availability.shtml.
- Blackboard workshops – Faculty Development and Instructional Design Center Center regularly schedules workshops on using Blackboard for teaching purposes, and the monthly program schedules can be found under Quick Links at http://www.niu.edu/facdev.
For those who are not able to attend a workshop, there is also now a Self-Paced Blackboard I workshop consisting of short video demonstrations, available at http://facdev.niu.edu/selfpacedbb1.
Answers to other Frequently Asked Blackboard-related questions can be found at: http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/faq and Blackboard-related help information can be found at: http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/atoz.
For login and password-related questions, please refer faculty to the DoIT helpdesk at 815-753-8100 or firstname.lastname@example.org and for other teaching-related Blackboard questions, faculty can submit the questions at http://www.niu.edu/blackboard/ask.