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Blackboard 9.1 Upgrade News



                                JU’s BLACKBOARD 9.1 (SP13) UPGRADE FOR SUMMER 2013
 
Dear colleagues,
This is a friendly reminder about our Blackboard upgrade scheduled to take place on Thursday (June 27th. 2013) . The system will be unavailable on this day as this upgrade will require a downtime window of 19 hours.
 
In order to provide you with the most up to date teaching and learning tools, we plan to upgrade JU to Blackboard Learn 9.1, Service Pack 13 . This will include many new and exciting updates to make your lives as educators more efficient and help you to keep students even more engaged! Please review the following highlights of some of the new features:

1. Achievements
2. Calendar
3. Discussions
4. Inline Assignment Grading
5. Retention Center
6. Tests Enhancements:
  • Ability to create exceptions to a single test to serve multiple use cases, such as providing extra time for individuals in need
  • More granular feedback release settings to accommodate varying test completion schedules
  • Test access log to view a student's path and experience with a test
Here are a couple of useful reminders:
 
If you are teaching Summer 1, and still haven't finished grading assignments and reporting final grades you need to do it by: Wed., June 26th as solicited by the Registrar’s Office academic calendar: Final grades due by 8:30 a.m. for classes housed in summer I (1st 6-and 8-weeks).
 
1.       Make sure you have downloaded an up-to-date copy of your Gradebook before the upgrade begins on Thursday.
2.       Documents on the Assignment Tool and any other student assignment submission should be downloaded to your local machine too as they will not be available during the upgrade.
3.       You also need to have an archive of your current courses as a back-up. Export your course content and save it to your computer, this creates a zip file that you can save to your computer or flash drive.  Just remember where you saved it! It is highly recommended to have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by this Wednesday’s night before 8:00 P.M.
During the upgrade process we will not have access to any course content or material on Blackboard at all.
 
 
If you are teaching 2nd 6-Weeks (13U2Z) your start date is today.  That means that on Thursday you and your students will not be able to log in to Blackboard. You need to:
1.       Do not schedule any assignment that involves the use of the LMS. In fact, it would be best to not schedule any important work for the rest of the first week in case unexpected things happen during the transition.
2.       All of your course material will be available to you and your students after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.   It is highly recommended that you have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by Wednesday before 8:00 P.M.  
 
If you are teaching  2nd 8-Wks Online your start date is next week, Monday July 1st, and the new Blackboard environment should be up and running by then. If you built any information on your current version 9.1 SP8  course shell you should:
1.       All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.   It is highly recommended that you have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by Wednesday night  before 8:00 P.M.  
 
The above goes also for Fall Semester courses.
 
Remember: Blackboard will be unavailable for the upgrade process, on Thursday (June 27th). During this system downtime, users will be unable to access Blackboard courses and organizations.
All of your content and URL’s will be copied to Bb 9.1 SP 13. After the migration you will want to go through your courses and check to make sure everything is there.
 Please, don’t hesitate to contact me if further assistance it is required.
 
 
Arturo Cole
JU Blackboard Administrator
Director of Online Marketing and Development
Marilyn Repsher Center for Teaching & Learning
Jacksonville University
 
 
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Upgrading to Blackboard Learn 9.1 Service Pack 13 (SP13)
Dear all,
As spring semester has come to an end, we are in preparation to upgrade to the latest service pack for Blackboard Learn. Blackboard @ JU is currently scheduled to be upgraded from release 9.1 SP8 to 9.1 SP13 on Thursday, June 27th, 2013. Many existing features have been improved and some exciting new features added to make the user experience more efficient.
Blackboard 9.1 SP13 is the latest release of the Blackboard Learn. This release:
§  Builds on the student engagement tools in earlier releases.
§  Improves the performance of the software.
§  Enhances the entire user interface to make it easier to use, more intuitive, and extends drag and drop simplicity along with context sensitive menus.
§  Brings new features for faculty and student to improve teaching and learning.

As Blackboard continuous to improve the system, the following are some of the features included within this upgrade:
§  My Blackboard and Global Navigation – An overlay when you first login to Bb will provide awareness of new features. There will be a new profile tool that includes avatar support for blogs, journals, wikis, and the discussion board.
§  New Content Editor with advance features for editing HTML and style.
§  New Discussion Board redesign with increased accessibility for screen readers.
§  Expanded Social Learning Tools for students to better communicate.
§  New Calendar will allow drag-n-drop functionality aligned with due dates entered.
§  Video Everywhere tool enables personalized and just in time feedback for students utilizing YouTube accounts.
§  Enhanced Assignment Grading features (to be able to grade and annotate online).
§  Retention Center to better monitor student performance.
§  Date Rollover Tool for better managing due dates.
§  Enhanced Item Analysis – Provides additional statistics on test performance and individual test questions.
§  Pattern Matching Fill-in-the-Blank – Fill in the blank questions can be automatically scored using a pattern matching feature.
§  Expanded Accessibility – New accessibility improvements include enhancements in the accessibility of tests.
Please keep in mind these features will not be available to JU until after the Update in late June.
 
Watch for CTL emails and other communications updating you on what is happening and when. 
We anticipate this should be a fairly smooth transition to the latest service pack. We appreciate any feedback or concerns as we move forward.
Thanks,
 
 
Arturo Cole
JU Blackboard Administrator
Director of Online Marketing and Development
Marilyn Repsher Center for Teaching & Learning
Jacksonville University
 
 
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                                    JU’s BLACKBOARD 9.1 (SP 8) UPGRADE FOR SUMMER 2012
 
What is happening and why?
Blackboard announced that they will stop supporting our current version of Blackboard in January 2013. You may be thinking, "So what?  Let's just keep using this version.  I'm used to it."  The danger will be that any problems we have with Blackboard 8 in the future would not be fixed.  The biggest issue everyone would notice is that every time a new browser comes out, Blackboard may have major features that would stop working.  Some browsers, like Firefox, have new versions every six weeks, so it wouldn't take long before everyone would start noticing problems.
 
That is why; Jacksonville University will be upgrading Blackboard from version 8.0 to version 9.1 (now called Blackboard Learn) the week of June 25-July 1st
 
The Blackboard server upgrade is scheduled to start on Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time the next day. In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  During this time we will not be able to login to Blackboard. We are still reserving the whole week in the event we need to extend this upgrade window once the upgrade has started. Please note: we do not anticipate the need for the extension, however we want to ensure a contingency plan is in place should any challenges arise.
 
What can/should you do before this happens?
Since we will be migrating your current classes to the new platform, this would be a good time to clean them up.   Remove any old files that you don't use anymore that are still taking up space in your class, including old links or unused files in your File Manager.
 
IMPORTANT
All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.  But it would be wise if you have a backup of your own course(s) for safekeeping (in case of an emergency). Be sure to create the backup of your course(s) by June 24. In the Control Panel of your course in BB there is the Export/Import Course option that allows you to make a backup of your course content and then import the content into your new course. Back up all data and store copies of the backup files on your local machine or drive.
For more help on this topic go to the CTL website: http://www.ju.edu/ctl/Pages/Academic-Technology-Support.aspx
 
I am teaching in the second 6wk or 8wk summer term – When will my course migrate? 
As mentioned above, the Blackboard upgrade is scheduled to start on Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be completed on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time on Tuesday June 26th. That’s when all of JU’s courses will be migrated to the new version of BB.
Summer 2012
Bb impact
12U1Z – 1st 6-Weeks – May 14th  to  June 22nd 
Semester and final grading completed prior to conversion, should be no impact.
12U1H – 1st 8-Wks Accelerated – April 30th  to  June 24th
12U1J – 1st 8-Wks Online – April 30th  to  June 24th
JU’s Blackboard Upgrade – June 25th to July 1st.
Server upgrade and course migration by June 26th at 11:00 PM
 
12U2Z – 2nd 6-Weeks – June 25th  to Aug 3rd  
No Bb during part of the first week.  Please create your course as you normally would, save it (export/import – just in case), it will be migrated for you and should be ready for your use by Wednesday 6/27*.
12U2W – 2nd 8-Wks Accelerated – July 2nd   to  Aug. 26th 
Create your course as you normally would, save it (export/import – just in case), it will be migrated for you and should be ready for fine-tuning by Wednesday 6/27*.
12U2X – 2nd 8-Wks Online – July 2nd   to  Aug. 26th 
 *We are reserving the whole week for this conversion in the event we need to extend this upgrade window once the upgrade has started. Please note: we do not anticipate the need for the extension, however we want to ensure a contingency plan is in place should any challenges arise.  Notification on any extension or interruptions to access will be quick and numerous.
 
Will all of the old features be available on the new system?
There will be some modifications to existing Blackboard functions as well as some new features not available in the current version in use.
Blackboard 9.1, also called Blackboard Learn, provides the features and tools available in version 8.0, plus significant enhancements to the user interface, new social learning tools and easier navigation throughout. The Blackboard 9.1 interface has been redesigned for an intuitive Web 2.0 look-and-feel.  In this new version instructors can drag-and-drop course content, turn edit mode ON (instructor view) or OFF (student view), and customize their course home page. The newly redesigned Assignment tool replaces the Digital Dropbox tool, providing a better submission workflow process.
Here is a list of some of the new/enhanced tools and features that you can expect to see in Blackboard Learn:
 
  •  Content Area (enhanced) – The content areas have changed considerably (more aesthetically than functionally). The content building menus are reorganized and rearranged. There are also new content types including: blank pages, assign textbook, and mashups.
  •  Mashups (new) – Mashups allow Instructors to add content to a Course that is from an external Web site. The new Mashup integrations with popular services such as YouTube, Flickr and Slideshare allow Instructors and Students to discover, select, and embed content from those services without ever leaving the Blackboard Learn interface. This content is used in a variety of ways within a Course: a standalone piece of Course Content, part of a test question, a topic on a Discussion Board, or as part of an assignment. The content displayed in a course will still reside on the external Web site.
  • Learning Modules (enhanced) – Learning Modules have gotten a bit of a face lift. They now have a hierarchical folder structure that allows students to see their progress within the Module.
  • Grade Center (enhanced) – The Grade Center is now a top level section on the control panel. In addition, smart views (filtered grade views) are featured more prominently in the Grade Center area. Other features include: Anonymous grading, question by question grading of exams, blogs and journals linked to the Grade Center, and grading rubrics.
  • File Management (enhanced) – One of the most significant changes is the addition of a Course Files area. Similar to the “File Manager” tool in Blackboard 8, Blackboard 9.1 provides a file area where you can store any files you wish to use in your course.
  • Assignments (enhanced) – Allows instructor to deploy assignments to individuals or groups and grade individually or as a group. Students will have the ability to submit multiple attempts for assignments if the instructor has enabled that feature. 
  • Journals (new) – Allows students to document on-going course learning and experiences in a public (course only) or private area. Instructors can comment on each student’s journal; however their peers only have read access.   Instructors can create Group Journals for students to collaboratively work and reflect among group peers.
  •  Blogs (new) – Instructors can create Individual, Course or Group Blogs for their students. Students can share their learning experiences and receive comments/feedback from both instructors and students. This area is considered a common area by either a student or a set of students for public (course only) comments. 
  •  Wikis (new) – Blackboard 9.1 allows you to create a Wiki, a collaborative tool most widely used in higher education for student-to-student collaboration.
  •  Notification dashboards (new) – Instructors and students can be notified via email when content becomes available, when assignments are due or submitted and when items need grading or have been graded.
  •  Groups (enhanced) – Instructors can now create multiple groups at once, providing default settings and descriptions for each group. Students can be automatically enrolled by the instructor, manually enrolled at a later date, or can sign-up for a group themselves. Instructors can allow students to create their own self-enrollment group, although the instructor has the ability to modify or restrict each group.

Watch an interactive presentation of the general overview of this upgrade:

http://prezi.com/o6ucggbzvte1/ju-blackboard-91-upgrade/

See the Upgrade Timeline:

http://prezi.com/mkqepeecdhns/ju-blackboard-91-upgrade-timeline/

 
The Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) will offer training and demonstrations of the new and improved features in Blackboard 9.1 (Blackboard Learn) starting on this Thursday May 3rd (12:30-2:00 pm at the Johnson Training Lab) and throughout the summer and fall semester. Please RSVP for planning purposes to kjackso, cturner1 or acole1. We'll give you access to training material to help ease your transition.
 
Watch for CTL emails and other communications updating you on what is happening and when. 
  

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Dear all,
 
The Blackboard server upgrade is almost here. It is scheduled to start on Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time the next day. In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  During this time we will not be able to login to Blackboard. We are still reserving the whole week in the event we need to extend this upgrade window once the upgrade has started. Please note: we do not anticipate the need for the extension, however we want to ensure a contingency plan is in place should any challenges arise.
 
Since we will be migrating your current classes to the new platform, this would be a good time to clean them up.   Remove any old files that you don't use anymore that are still taking up space in your class, including old links or unused files in your File Manager.
 
All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.  But it would be wise if you have a backup of your own course(s) for safekeeping (in case of an emergency). Be sure to create the backup of your course(s) by June 24. In the Control Panel of your course in Bb, under Course Options, there are the Export and Archive Course options that allows you to make a backup of your course content. Back up all data and store copies of the backup files on your local machine or drive.
 
So, what’s the difference between Exporting and Archiving a Blackboard Course?
 
Export: Export takes course content and puts it in a package that can be used in another course at a later date. Instructors can choose one or more course areas they would like to include in the package. Export packages are downloaded as compressed .ZIP files to the user's hard drive and can be imported into Blackboard Learning System in the same format. Do not unzip an Export package or remove files from the package, otherwise the package will not be imported correctly.
 
Archive: The Archive Course function enables the Instructor to make a record of a course, including all of the user information. The archive is saved in a .ZIP file that the Instructor can access in the future. The Grade Center History can also be added to a course archive but including this information can increase the file size and processing time. When you archive a course all the students information are saved. And not just the Grade Center info, also all the discussion board posts. Archiving a course creates a permanent record of a course including all of the content and user interactions and becomes useful in maintaining a record of a course after it has been taught.
After the selections for Export or Archive Course are submitted, Blackboard will take a few moments to generate a  Zip package (.zip file). When the package is complete, an email alert will be sent to your inbox (JU email). After the email is received, the faculty should open the Export / Archive Manager (or refresh the browser page), the .zip file will appear in a listing once it has been created and now you will be able to download the Zip package to a local computer or drive, saving it as a .zip file.
Notes:
1. It is important that an Export or Archive package is not unzipped or any files removed from the package, otherwise the package will not be imported properly later on. Contents of the course archive and export .zip files are only readable once imported back into Blackboard.
2. These package files will be purged from Blackboard every 24 hours, so make sure to download them as soon as possible after creation. They are automatically purged from the system so they don’t take up Bb storage space.
Attached to this email you can find a PDF file (by Dr. Angela Mattia) with the instructions on how to export your course. 
 
I hope you find this information of help. If you still need more help on doing this task don’t hesitate and contact me (by email or phone). 
 
If you can’t make it to campus or has difficulty attending face-to-face workshops  a hands-on self-paced tutorial is available.  Click the link to access the material:
 
I also would like to point out that on the CTL webpage we have put an extensive list of links to Blackboard 9.1 Tutorials for Faculty:
 
This is a great chance for JU Faculty to see and experience how the new version of Blackboard looks and feels like!
 
Best regards,
   Arturo
 
 
Watch for CTL emails and other communications updating you on what is happening and when. 
 
 
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Dear JU Student:
Jacksonville University is upgrading to Blackboard’s latest release on the week of June 25-July 1st
We are excited to announce that JU's Blackboard courses are being upgraded into the new Blackboard 9.1.  The update is scheduled to begin on Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time the next day (Tuesday June 26th). During the conversion Blackboard will be unavailable to students and faculty.   In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  We apologize for the possible inconvenience; however, we worked to schedule it to minimize the disruption.   
Blackboard 9.1, also called Blackboard Learn, has new features and capabilities that we are sure you will appreciate. Blackboard Learn uses a web 2.0 interface that allows users to drag-and-drop items that appear on the screen, select drop-down menus, and even access contextual help. You will enjoy using fewer clicks to navigate the system and complete tasks.
A great place for students to learn about the new Blackboard is:
http://ondemand.blackboard.com/students.htm
You will be able to view videos on the new features of Blackboard 9.1.
 
 
 
Dear JU Faculty:
The actual upgrade of JU’s Blackboard environment is scheduled to take place over the week of June 25-July 1st, starting on Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time the next day (Tuesday June 26th). The target “go-live” date for the new Blackboard 9.1 is set for Wednesday, June 27th. 
 
All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.  We also strongly encourage you to archive your courses before the upgrade occurs, in the event that something gets lost, you will maintain a copy of your courses.
 
Be sure to create the backup of your course(s) by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.  
Back up all data and store copies of the backup files on your local machine or drive.
 
Here’s a brief tutorial on How to Export a Course in Blackboard (PDF format).
 
For additional assistance on exporting, importing and archiving courses contact me (acole1@ju.edu).
 
In preparation for the Blackboard 9.1 upgrade, and due to scheduling restraints, the upgrade process unavoidably coincides with some important dates. We are asking faculty to help us in the transition by being aware of the following dates, and preparing their course information as follows.
  • The1st 6-Weeks (12U1Z) ends on June 22nd BUT final grades are due 6/27 by 8:30 a.m.
    and
    the1st 8-Weeks (12U1H & J) ends on June 24th BUT final grades are due 6/27 by 8:30 a.m.
    ACTION: If you are teaching on either of these academic periods you need to have an archive of your current courses, and make sure you have downloaded an up-to-date copy of your Gradebook by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
    Documents on the Digital dropbox and any other student assignment submission should be downloaded to your local machine too as they will not be available during the upgrade.
  •  The start of the 2nd 6-Weeks (12U2Z) is on Mon., June 25ththat means that for the first two days of classes you and your students will not be able to log in to Blackboard.
    ACTION: Do not schedule any assignment that involves the use of the LMS. In fact, it would be best to not schedule any important work for the rest of the first week.
    It is highly recommended to have a back up of your course by using the Export feature 
    by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
  • The 2nd 8-Wks Online starts on July 2, the new Blackboard environment should be up and running by then.
Upon consideration of this tight timeframe, we are asking faculty to develop their Summer 2 and Fall semester courses in the current Blackboard 8.0 environment so that these courses are in place following the upgrade to the Blackboard 9.1 environment. We are also recommending that you have a back up of your courses by using the Export feature in the Control Panel by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
 
Remember: Blackboard will be unavailable for the upgrade process, from Monday, June 25th at 8:00 p.m. until Tuesday, June 26th at 11:00 p.m. During this system downtime, users will be unable to access Blackboard courses and organizations.
 
All of your content and URL's will be copied to Bb 9.1. After the migration you will want to go through your courses and check to make sure everything is there.
 
Please, don’t hesitate to contact me if further assistance it is required.
 
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One Final Blackboard Upgrade Update and Important Reminders
 
Dear JU Faculty:
 
It is just about that time!!  The Blackboard upgrade to version 9.1 is upon us.  Jacksonville University is upgrading to Blackboard’s latest release NEXT WEEK
 
Here are some reminders and additional notes for you:
 
The actual upgrade of JU’s Blackboard environment is scheduled to take place at Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time the next day (Tuesday June 26th). During the conversion Blackboard will be unavailable to students and faculty.   In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  We apologize for the possible inconvenience; however, we worked to schedule it to minimize the disruption. 
 
The target “go-live” date for the new Blackboard 9.1 is set for Wednesday, June 27th. 
 
All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.  We also strongly encourage you to archive your courses before the upgrade occurs, in the event that something gets lost, you will maintain a copy of your courses.
 
Be sure to create the backup of your course(s) by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.  
Back up all data and store copies of the backup files on your local machine or drive.
 
Here’s a brief tutorial on How to Export a Course in Blackboard (PDF format).
For additional assistance on exporting, importing and archiving courses contact me (acole1@ju.edu).
 
In preparation for the Blackboard 9.1 upgrade, and due to scheduling restraints, the upgrade process unavoidably coincides with some important dates. We are asking faculty to help us in the transition by being aware of the following dates, and preparing their course information as follows.
  • The1st 6-Weeks (12U1Z) ends on June 22nd BUT final grades are due 6/27 by 8:30 a.m.
    and
    the1st 8-Weeks (12U1H & J) ends on June 24th BUT final grades are due 6/27 by 8:30 a.m.
    ACTION: If you are teaching on either of these academic periods you need
    to have an archive of your current courses, and make sure you have downloaded an up-to-date copy of your Gradebook by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
    Documents on the Digital dropbox and any other student assignment submission should be downloaded to your local machine too as they will not be available during the upgrade.
  •  The start of the 2nd 6-Weeks (12U2Z) is on Mon., June 25ththat means that for the first two days of classes you and your students will not be able to log in to Blackboard.
    ACTION: Do not schedule any assignment that involves the use of the LMS. In fact, it would be best to not schedule any important work for the rest of the first week.
    It is highly recommended to have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
  • The 2nd 8-Wks Online starts on July 2, the new Blackboard environment should be up and running by then.
Upon consideration of this tight timeframe, we are asking faculty to develop their Summer 2 and Fall semester courses in the current Blackboard 8.0 environment so that these courses are in place following the upgrade to the Blackboard 9.1 environment. We are also recommending that you have a back up of your courses by using the Export feature in the Control Panel by Monday, June 25th before 8:00 P.M.
 
Remember: Blackboard will be unavailable for the upgrade process, from Monday, June 25th at 8:00 p.m. until Tuesday, June 26th at 11:00 p.m. During this system downtime, users will be unable to access Blackboard courses and organizations.
All of your content and URL’s will be copied to Bb 9.1. After the migration you will want to go through your courses and check to make sure everything is there.
 
Please, don’t hesitate to contact me if further assistance it is required.
 
 
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Dear all,
 
Todays is THE DAY. The Blackboard upgrade to version 9.1 is HERE. JU’s Blackboard environment is scheduled to take place tonight, Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time tomorrow, Tuesday June 26th. During the conversion Blackboard will be unavailable to students and faculty.   In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  We apologize for the possible inconvenience; however, we worked to schedule it to minimize the disruption.  
 
Reminders:
 
If you are teaching Summer 1, and still haven't finished grading assignments and reporting final grades you need to:
1.       Make sure you have downloaded an up-to-date copy of your Gradebook before the upgrade begins tonight so you can still work around and report final grades in WebAdvisor by the due date.
2.       Documents on the Digital dropbox and any other student assignment submission should be downloaded to your local machine too as they will not be available during the upgrade.
3.       You also need to have an archive of your current courses as a back-up. Export your course content and save it to your computer, this creates a zip file that you can save to your computer or flash drive.  Just remember where you saved it! It is highly recommended to have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by tonight before 8:00 P.M.
During the upgrade process we will not have access to any course content or material on Blackboard at all.
 
 
If you are teaching 2nd 6-Weeks (12U2Z) your start date is today.  That means that for the first two days of classes you and your students will not be able to log in to Blackboard. You need to:
1.       Do not schedule any assignment that involves the use of the LMS. In fact, it would be best to not schedule any important work for the rest of the first week in case unexpected things happen during the transition.
2.       All of your course material will be available to you and your students after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.   It is highly recommended that you have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by tonight before 8:00 P.M.  
 
If you are teaching  2nd 8-Wks Online your start date is next week, Monday July 2nd, and the new Blackboard environment should be up and running by then. If you built any information on your current version 8  course shell you should:
1.       All of your material will be available to you after the upgrade.  We will move all classes and content for you from the old version to the new version during the migration process.   It is highly recommended that you have a back up of your course by using the Export feature by tonight before 8:00 P.M.  
 
The above goes also for Fall Semester courses.
 
Remember: Blackboard will be unavailable for the upgrade process, from Monday, June 25th at 8:00 p.m. until Tuesday, June 26th at 11:00 p.m. During this system downtime, users will be unable to access Blackboard courses and organizations.
All of your content and URL’s will be copied to Bb 9.1. After the migration you will want to go through your courses and check to make sure everything is there.
 
 Please, don’t hesitate to contact me if further assistance it is required.
 
 
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Dear all,
 
This notification is in regards to our Production Blackboard Learn environment. Production Upgrade In Progress:    The planned software upgrade of our Blackboard production environment has been started. 
 
Our Blackboard upgrade to version 9.1 begun last night as scheduled, Monday June 25th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time.  And it should be complete on or before 11:00 PM Eastern Time tonight, Tuesday June 26th. During the conversion Blackboard will be unavailable to students and faculty.   In an effort to transition to version 9.1, our upgrade will have a downtime window of 27 hours.  We apologize for the possible inconvenience; however, we worked to schedule it to minimize the disruption.  
 
We will notify you when the upgrade process has been completed.
 
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Dear all,
 
This notification is in regards to our Production Blackboard Learn environment. Production Upgrade StatusREADY. 
 
Welcome to our new Blackboard 9.1 environment at Jacksonville University.
Blackboard has been upgraded to Blackboard 9.1.  Changes to Blackboard will call for fewer clicks and less-cluttered pages. With this new version (Blackboard Learn, Version 9.1, Service Pack 8), students and faculty members will be able to move from course to course without going back to the homepage each time they want to change. The newer version also has a sleeker look to it. It’s much better organized.
All of your content and URL’s were copied to Bb 9.1. After the migration you will want to go through your courses and check to make sure everything is there. The new Blackboard is configured to use your same JU username and password. This is the password that students and instructors use to login to: WebAdvisor, Jacksonville University computers, e-mail and many more systems on campus.
 
The following is a checklist of things to check in each of your courses following the upgrade:
 
Faculty Checklist for Blackboard 9.1
Is everything visible that should be?
Are items displaying in the correct order?
Are the dates of availability correct?
Do all of your images display?
Are your assignments intact?
Are your discussion boards intact?
Are your assessments intact?
Can you add items?
Do audio and videos still work?
Do all of the links within your course work?
Check Grade Center: Columns; Due Dates of each Assessments; Categories; Total Points; and Display of Columns
Check tests:  Do tests open properly?
 
Check the above list to verify that all of your courses content and information were properly brought over to the new version.
 
Please report any issue you may encounter to my email account (acole1@ju.edu).
 
If you are experiencing issues using the new Blackboard or for help browse the online Blackboard Student Help or Blackboard Instructor Help.
 
 Also, please feel free to contact me.
 
Kindest regards,
   Arturo
 


Arturo Cole
JU Blackboard Administrator
Director of Online Marketing and Development
Marilyn Repsher Center for Teaching & Learning
Jacksonville University
904.256.7972