Blackboard Ally

We are delighted to announce Blackboard Ally will be available from Monday 24th September. Ally is a new tool which improves the accessibility of content uploaded to Blackboard for all users including those with disabilities.

This video shows how Ally works to improve student experience, saves staff time and gives the university an insight into how it meets it’s legal requirements for accessibility.

Ally automatically converts uploaded content into a variety of accessible alternative formats such as audio, tagged PDF and ebook. Staff will see a small colour coded metre icon next to uploaded content, clicking this icon will provide guidance on how to improve accessibility and provide quick ways to amend the uploaded content.


Accessibility score icons

Students do not see accessibility scores and will only ever see links to the automatically created alternative formats.

Having accessible content benefits all students by providing formats that meet their needs. Additionally, new legislation coming into force requires all public sector websites, intranet pages and downloadable content after 23rd September 2018 to have accessible alternatives. VLEs like Blackboard are included in this legislation, so we’re pleased to provide a tool to ensure Blackboard complies with this whilst taking pressure off University staff to meet requirements.

Our Blackboard Ally page contains links to guides and videos. If you have any comments or further questions please contact us via digital-education@bristol.ac.uk.

 

Issues with email replies from the Digital Education account

We are currently experiencing some problems with email replies from our ticketing software TOPdesk being sent directly to user’s spam folders.  If you have recently sent in a request to Digital-Education@bristol.ac.uk can you please check that your spam folder does not contain any follow up correspondence.

We are working with IT Services to resolve the issue and hope to be back to normal shortly.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

 

 

Problems uploading files to Blackboard using Safari browser

We have had reports of the error message:  “Failed to save Content item. Please try again” appearing when attempting to upload files to Blackboard using the latest Safari browser.  It is possible to upload files using the Chrome browser however, please see here for instructions on how to install this browser on a mac.

We are working with our suppliers to remedy this error and hope to have a fix applied soon. We will update this blog with any further information and apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Turnitin service alert – 17th Sept 2018

We have had a communication from Turnitin warning us of possible intermittent service problems.  As yet we have not experienced any problems with the service although you may find that uploads are slower than usual.

Turnitin are currently working to resolve the problem and we will keep this blog updated with any further information.