Posts Tagged ‘Content-System’

Blackboard: Content System: Ancillary digital textbook material reuse (publish to course participants, roll-over between terms)

If you have a well administered language program, your admin should have uploaded all digital (text, audio, textbook and table of contents) materials that come with your textbook for convenient reuse between sections and terms into the Blackboard content system.

As a Blackboard course administrator, you can easily give all course participants access in 1 step (as course administrator, you can also access the audio materials during classes from the Blackboard content system directly).

Here is a video recording of a real-world walkthrough of this process – voice-over is in German, but Blackboard interface is in English:  blackboard-content-system-finding-adding-existing-content-item-to-course-access-play.wmv

Start Time



overview of teaching and learning procedure


course add item / content collection link


how to search for content. Remember: Search is your friend, if you have a consistent metadata system for your content (start with meaningful file names):


hot to add permissions for other users


add to course for for students


listen to an example audio from course

Once you have given course participants access to the audio materials, and you teach the course again next term, it is even easier to roll over the access: Just use the Copy link in the Blackboard Control Panel.

Face-to-face and beyond: Smart-board with digitized textbooks and classroom protocols, using MS_Remote Desktop, MS_Zoomit, wireless keyboard, network shares and the Blackboard: Content System

  1. This post strings together some already supported or freely available technologies for an effortless way to integrate technology into teaching and learning.
  2.  I had lab assistants scan my textbook. I stored the scans on the teacher-only network share.
  3. In the classroom, I connect to my office computer with mstsc.
    1. you may have to change screen resolution in mstsc. You can save your connection settings on the teacher network share.
  4. To save precious class contact time, on my office computer, I have already opened and prepared the class outline and relevant textbook scan pages with the default windows viewer.
  5. Using zoomit, I can mark on the textbook scan pages for my students, and save the resulting pages, later easily (drag and drop all pages at once) store them in the content system or my students to review my notes.
    1. you may want to adjust the font size in zoomit options.
  6. this technique may also help with fading out document cameras which may, among other things, help with finding enough space to put.


LLC Catalogue: Video-Reserves.xlsm, Reserve desk, Schedule, using Blackboard Content System WebDAV

For a LLC video schedule, we came up with the following repurposing of existing infrastructure:

  1. MS-Excel: still the “Swiss army knife” of choice for the middle manager. Allows for: semi-automatic creation of reserve date sequences (insert series), given a start and end date; data validation during data entry, and, based on that, sorting and filtering and, based on that, finding.
  2. Blackboard Content management system (WebDAV) to manage reading and writing (editing) permissions.
  3. Staff can use MS-Excel to request videos – preferably at start of term – to be put on reserve within a start and end date, during which they will be periodically shown, by opening the spreadsheet from MS-Excel and filling in the green cells in the first empty row at the bottom.
  4. Lab Staff can use MS-Excel to periodically transfer video reserve requests into video showings.
  5. Lab Assistants can use MS-Excel to daily maintain video reserve desk and video showings.
  6. Students can use a web browser to preview video showing times during the remainder of the term. 
  7. To open the video schedule for read-only, Loyola students and staff can  simply click this link in their browser: Even read-only access includes the capability to search, sort and filter the schedule data, but you cannot save back.
  8. To open the video schedule for editing, LLC and Modern Languages staff  can start MS-Excel, click menu: File / Open, and copy/paste this link:, then click open.
  9. All users will have to authenticate with their institutional account info:



Blackboard: Content System: Permissions, Roles and Gotchas

  1. The “Course user list“ refers to courses.
  2. The “Organization user list” refers to departmental groups. The subdivision is meaning list for our department.
  3. The “Institution user list” adds the most global group level.
  4. Finally, you can make files available to the “Public”. Note, however, that this seems to effectively bypass the more fine-grained permission checks. E.G. if you give read access to the public, users who open your files will not receive an authentication challenge, so if you try to give some of the users write access to your files, that will not trickle through. Workaround:  Do not use “public”.

How to distribute learning materials using the Blackboard Content System

I needed to make a large set of textbook mp3 files accessible to myself in the classroom, as well as to students and myself from dorm/home.

The Blackboard Content System makes this easy, while observing copyright restrictions.

Below is a 6-minute narrated screencast on how to set up and use the Blackboard Content System to easily (work on batches of files on the web, just like on your computer, access from office, classrooms or home office) and securely (allow access only to qualified students)  handle multimedia files

The example involves numerous mp3 files from a Textbook Audio CD previously only accessible from the LLC computers)).

This would work as well with your self-created teaching materials, from text handouts to video recordings.

If you need better management (many files, reuse across terms) than the standard course document upload can provide.

See the video file name for a brief table of contents:


If the teaching material item is already in the content collection, to publish it to a new course:

  1. add a new item to a content area of the course,
  2. follow the numbered steps 1-4 in this screenshot:
  3. then click submit twice: first close the content system window with , to automatically give your students access to the files: , then finish adding