New Year workshops and webinars from the Digital Education Office

Booking is now open for Digital Education Office workshops and webinars in the New Year.  These include new webinars covering Blackboard Basics and the Grade Centre, as well as workshops on Blackboard, materials design, synchronous online teaching, and advanced admin skills for EMA.  More information and booking.

Recordings of our Winter webinar series are also available.  These covered:

  • Managing student access to online submission points in Blackboard – pre-submission quizzes, groups and adaptive release.  
  • Giving feedback in Turnitin Feedback Studio.  
  • Blackboard basicsmarking and providing feedback on assignments.  
  • Help your students engage with your Blackboard course – course design and layout.

To request access to the recordings please email digital-education@bristol.ac.uk

Re/Play updates – New static cameras

As part of the continuing Re/Play extension project we are pleased to announce we have extended the coverage of cameras in rooms where a chalk or white board are used as an integral part of the Lecture.

There are now 23 rooms across the institution a full list can be located here

What is recorded?

At the current time these cameras have been installed with a static capture area and this is indicated by the Re/Play Record Area stickers in the room (see above). In larger rooms this will not be every board.

How do I request to use the camera?

 As per the Recording Educational Uses policy we do not film lectures without express permission. These cameras will not be switched on unless you request for filming to take place. If you wish to opt in please email a request to the service-desk@bristol.ac.uk and ask for the camera template to be used on your unit code. Please note that if this is for a jointly taught unit then it will stay in place for the duration of the teaching.

Blackboard Ally

We are delighted to announce that 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 the student experience, save staff time and give the University an insight into how it meets its 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 meter 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 the accessibility score icons 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 to have accessible alternatives after 23rd September 2018. VLEs like Blackboard are included in this legislation, so we’re pleased to provide a tool to ensure Blackboard complies with this while 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.

 

 

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.

 

Blackboard maintenance, Friday April 27th, 1 am – 7 am

On Friday, April 27th, 2018, Blackboard will be performing scheduled infrastructure maintenance at their data centre. The six-hour window is for the entire maintenance work to complete; however, the total outage duration is not expected to exceed 30 minutes and will be near the beginning of the maintenance period.

Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.