Blackboard maintenance (no downtime), 1 am – 5 am, Friday, January 26

Blackboard will performing emergency infrastructure maintenance between 1 am and 5 am on Friday, January 26. While we anticipate no interruption in the Blackboard service as a result of the work being performed, we cannot entirely rule out periods of service interruption during this maintenance window. Blackboard will make all efforts to keep any service disruption within the window to a minimum, but you should be aware that interruptions are possible.

Make Blackboard courses available to students

As an Instructor, if under “My Courses” on your Blackboard home page  you see “not currently available” or “unavailable” after the course name, this means the course is unavailable to students. Instructors can still access and edit the course.

There are two ways to make your courses available to students

  • You can use the Quick Tools on your Blackboard Home page. Click Course Availability and turn the On/Off button next to the course to the required state.

OR

  • Click on the course
  • Under Control Panel, click on Customisation
  • Click on Properties
  • In section 3, Set availability, select Yes
  • Click Submit

If you have any problems or queries please contact Digital-Education@bristol.ac.uk

Box View Error – Unable to Load New Box View Due to Disabled Third-Party Cookies

Blackboard have informed us of a known issue when using the new Box View service.

If you are attempting to view a document using a browser which has blocked third-party cookies, you will see a blank page, and the new Box View service and submitted document will never fully load.

The suggested solution for this is to enable third-party cookies in your browser by following these steps:

  1. Browser Settings or Preferences > Privacy
  2. Select “Always allow” (or similar)
  3. Refresh the page with the viewer on it
  4. Return to Browser Settings or Preferences and revert to the default of “Allow from websites I visit” (or similar).

There are more specific instructions for each browser here.

If third-party cookies must be disabled, some browsers allow for domain exceptions to be added. Please Allow [*.]box.com (Chrome) or https://box.com (Firefox).

 

Missing scroll bars on a Mac

Some Mac users have reported not being able to see scroll bars when accessing the Grade Centre, which means that they have been unable to find the correct column for marking. This is due to a setting in the Mac operating system and can be rectified by following these steps:

  • Click the Apple menu at the top-left of the screen, then select System Preferences.
  • Next, select the General preferences pane; it’s the very first one, up at the top.
  • Under the “Show scroll bars” heading, you’ll find three options: “Automatically based on input device,” “When scrolling” and “Always”.
  • Select Always.

Blackboard available again

Blackboard is available again following essential maintenance overnight. The feedback annotation tool, Crocodoc, has now been replaced by Box View. Follow this link for more information on the change to Box View. There is also further advice for staff and for students.

There is currently an unrelated issue whereby students see their grades to 5 decimal places, so for example 70 will display as 70.00000. Blackboard are aware of this.

Reminder: Blackboard downtime tonight – 10.30 pm 4 January to 10.30 am 5 January 2018

This is a reminder that the Blackboard service will be unavailable from 10.30 pm tonight (Thursday 4 January 2018) up to 10.30 am tomorrow (Friday 5 January 2018) for essential maintenance work. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. This update will include a change to Blackboard’s feedback annotation tool (Crocodoc). Please see separate post for information.

University Christmas Closure

The University will be closed for Christmas from 23rd Dec 2017 – 2nd Jan 2017 inclusive, and the Digital Education Office will be unavailable. Please email Digital-Education@bristol.ac.uk as usual and we will respond as soon as possible when we return. If you experience urgent problems during this time (for example, a service is unavailable)  please contact the Service Desk on ( 0117 92) 87870

 

Change to Blackboard feedback annotation tool, Crocodoc

The tool which Blackboard currently uses to allow markers to provide feedback annotations directly on submitted assignments, Crocodoc, is being replaced on 5th January 2018.  Markers should not use Crocodoc where it is possible that those comments/annotations may need editing after 4th January 2018.   Follow this link for more information on this change.  There is also further advice for staff and for students.