Blackboard News You Can Use – January 2021

Blackboard News You Can Use

Welcome back to Blackboard News You Can Use, your brief monthly newsletter to help you promote student success through MATC’s online learning environment, Blackboard Learn. In this edition, we share news about new features and resources to support your teaching practice.

Best Practices and Support for Blackboard Use
See our Faculty Blackboard Support Guide for helpful resources to help you prepare your courses. All faculty are required to upload a current syllabus in their fall SP2021 sections, set up a Career Essentials Assessment, and make sections available to students. If you have questions about getting started, the Faculty Support Liaisons are your first point of contact for one-on-one consultation.

Students may refer to the Online Course Access Guide, view Student Support Website tutorials, and attend a Live Blackboard Online Orientation for information about accessing tools or courses. For questions about Blackboard navigation, they may Contact Student Support. An online readiness survey will be sent to students soon.

Frequently Asked About Tasks and Tips
  • To find your spring sections, see the Guide to the Course List. Spring 2021 sections may be organized under the term “Spring – 2021” or the “Upcoming” section on the Courses page.
  • To make a course available to students earlier than the start-date, see the Course Availability Guide (page 2).

Faculty Training and Support 

The faculty liaisons are your first point of contact for Blackboard how-to questions and assistance. See the Faculty Liaison Schedule for their availability to meet online for consultations.  

Upcoming Training Courses

Enroll in professional development’s free 1 credit online courses to learn how to use Blackboard tools. See our Spring Training Course Schedule for additional offerings and instructions for registration.

Course Date & Time
Introduction to Blackboard
Sat January 23rd & 30th, 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM; additional coursework hours required
Intermediate Blackboard
Sun January 31st to February 21st; flexible 3 weeks!
Upcoming Webinars

In addition to our training courses, faculty are invited to attend a series of free Remote Instruction Webinars that will be provided by the Blackboard Company throughout the spring term. Additional special topic webinars will be provided by the Online Learning department – see the schedule and webinar links below to join. Additional webinars will be coming soon!

Session Topic Day Time Leaders Collaborate Room Link – Click to Join
SmarterProctoring Faculty Training Wed January 20th 11am – 12pm S. Doty
SmarterProctoring Faculty Training Thu January 21st 3pm – 4pm S. Doty
Using Assessments & the Grade Center Fri Jan 29th 1pm – 2pm M. Hamilton

Technology Resources

The following tools are available to support remote teaching and learning in Blackboard. If you have questions about using these technologies, please contact

TechSmith Knowmia – For faculty and student use!

Faculty may use TechSmith Knowmia to support instruction and assessment. Students may log into Knowmia to record their own videos to share with you and fellow students and share videos of their own. This can be a excellent option for authentic assessments, such as speeches and projects. See these resources to learn more:


SmarterProctoring is MATC’s new online test proctoring tool for securing Blackboard exams. Faculty can customize an automated proctoring session with options for recording the student, locking down the browser, and verifying student identity through photo-ID.To learn more about using SmarterProctoring to protect high-stakes Blackboard exams, see these resources:

Collaborate Ultra

Faculty use Collaborate Ultra to meet with students online for synchronous lectures or office hours. Please see these resources to use this tool in your courses.

Resources to Support Your Move to Online Instruction

Faculty Support 
Student Support