Blackboard unavailable Friday 21 July between 1:00 am and 12:00 noon, then read-only until Tuesday 25 July 7:30 am

This is a final reminder that Blackboard will be unavailable on Friday 21 July from 1:00 am up to 12:00 noon. This is to allow a final copy to be made for the new externally-hosted service. A “read-only” version of Blackboard will then be available until Tuesday 25 July at 7:30 am.

Find out more about the changes at our project page.

TurningPoint Upgrade – July 2017

In the week starting Monday 3 July, we will upgrade TurningPoint to the latest version, which allows students to vote using their own devices, such as smartphones or laptops, as well as the usual keypads or clickers.

This upgrade will take place in conjunction with the University move to Office 2016, as the version of TurningPoint that we are currently using is not compatible with Office 2016. The new version is very similar to the current version, but it does have one significant difference – in order to run a poll, a licence is required. We have purchased a number of licences to cover the anticipated use of TurningPoint this year. Each licence will have a University email address associated with it and a password, used to log in when running a poll.

Each school that uses TurningPoint will have a general licence to be loaned out to staff for use in teaching sessions, much as the handsets are currently. Please contact your school office for details of the school licence, or to request having an individual licence assigned if you use it very regularly.

The TurningPoint receivers will also require an upgrade to the new version. The first time a receiver is plugged into a PC running the new version, a message will appear, stating that the receiver requires an update. If this happens, you should proceed with the update, which will mean that the receiver will no longer work with the old version of TurningPoint.

A short video showing how to get started with the new version is available here:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=0B2GAIVb3X8byNFBJUHZONzBZejg

For further information, please contact the TELED Team: tel-help@bristol.ac.uk.

Blackboard: move to external hosting, software upgrade, Blackboard Collaborate

External Hosting

We are delighted to announce that Blackboard will be moved to an externally-hosted service this summer.  Benefits of external hosting of technical support include:

  • A reliable and resilient infrastructure with less unplanned service unavailability
  • Less planned downtime (eg some essential maintenance will be possible without downtime, upgrades take less time and can be completed overnight or at weekends)
  • A highly scalable technical infrastructure with capacity to respond quickly to new requirements
  • Quicker resolution of technical issues, due to 24x7x365 support, monitoring and problem resolution
  • More rapid deployment of new software versions to resolve issues and respond to new requirements
  • Improved performance, giving a better user experience.

The move to external hosting will take place between 4:30 pm on Friday 21 July and 4:00 pm on Tuesday 25 July. A read-only Blackboard service will be available over that period. All existing data and courses will be migrated to the externally-hosted service.

Software upgrade, course rollover

  • The Blackboard software upgrade will take place between 7:00 pm on Sunday 6 August and 2:00 pm on Monday 7 August.  The upgrade will introduce some new features (including a quicker way to add content to courses). The upgrade will also introduce improvements to the design and layout of Blackboard.
  • Course rollover will take place in early August, after the 2017-18 unit and programme information is available.

New online teaching tool – Blackboard Collaborate

  • From Monday 7 August, all staff will have access a completely new online learning and teaching tool – Blackboard Collaborate. Collaborate is an online classroom environment which can be used for activities such as online classes, office hours and guest lectures (using video, audio, text chat, a shared whiteboard and application sharing). For more information see the Blackboard Collaborate web pages: http://www.blackboard.com/online-collaborative-learning/blackboard-collaborate.aspx  

Please refer to our  external hosting project web page for updated information, where we will add answers to frequently asked questions.

For Blackboard support, training and advice, please contact us: (tel-help@bristol.ac.uk; 0117 33 17605).

 

Mediasite Lectures delay in publishing to Blackboard – 8th May (updated)

Update – 11.00am 8th May – All Mediasite recordings should now be visible in the associated course areas in Blackboard.

We are still experiencing delays with recordings not appearing in the links for students in Blackboard courses.

Mediasite are aware of the problem and are working to fix this. All of the recordings are still present on the Mediasite server so no lectures will be lost.

Update – 11.00am The adding of recordings to Blackboard courses is now catching up and we are seeing content from the 2nd May be adding to the links in Blackboard.

Any questions please email tel-help@bristol.ac.uk

 

 

Mediasite lectures not being visible – 2nd May 2017 (updated)

We are currently investigating missing recordings from the catalogs in Blackboard from the Mediasite Service. TELED are working with our colleagues in IT Services and the supplier to understand why the problem has occurred and to resolve this issue.

Update 13.00- we have identified where the problem is occurring and have established that is a percentage of the recordings not everything recorded last week. This has been escalated with the supplier and is being looked in to by the Engineers. Please note that no recordings have been lost it is just the link in to Blackboard that has encountered problems.

Update 3rd May 10am – The problem with the links in Blackboard from Mediasite has now been resolved. If your students are still reporting  missing recordings please can you email tel-help@bristol.ac.uk.