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General FAQ

What browsers are recommended for use with Blackboard, and where can I download them?

We recommend the following browsers for use with Blackboard:

We strongly recommend that Macintosh users upgrade their system to 10.4 or later.

Can I access Blackboard from my tablet or smartphone?

We are investigating the use of the Blackboard Mobile App, but at this time mobile access is not available.

What is my Blackboard username and password?

To access Blackboard you must sign in to the MySuffolk portal. Once logged in to the portal, click on the Blackboard tab and you'll be taken directly to Blackboard.

For questions or problems with your MySuffolk username and password, contact the University Service Desk.

When are Blackboard Courses Created?

Blackboard courses are automatically created through a feed from the registrar's Datatel system at least 8 weeks before the start of term. 

By default, courses are "unavailable" to students and must be manually made available by the instructor. 

Courses will remain available to students after the end of term unless an instructor chooses to make a course unavailable.

How Often Are Students Added to or Removed from Blackboard Courses?

Faculty and student enrollments are added to (or removed from) Blackboard courses automatically through a data feed from the registrar's system.  Teaching assistants, auditors, and other users whose association with a course is not in Datatel must be added manually.  Student enrollments start to feed into Blackboard at least 8 weeks before the term begins.  During drop/add period this student Blackboard enrollment feed will run approximately every 4 hours.  For the remainder of the term the enrollment feed runs only once a day.  If a student who has registered does not gain access to a course within 24 hours please contact OTM.

Where can I get help with Campus Cruiser (MySuffolk) login issues?

For all Campus Cruiser questions and issues, please call the University Service Desk .

Where can I get help with Blackboard issues?

The University Help Desk handles all Blackboard and HorizonWimba (audio/video tool) related issues.

Faculty who need help with Blackboard may contact the Instructional Technologist for assistance during normal business hours.

Faculty FAQ

How do I get a course site in Blackboard for my course?

All Sawyer Business School courses have accompanying Blackboard sites. These sites are created at least 8 weeks before the start of each term. Log in to Blackboard through MySuffolk to view the links to your current and past courses.

Why should I consider using my course site in Blackboard?

A course web site provides students with 24-hour access to course materials in one central location. Materials can be accessed from any computer that is connected to the Internet, and access is restricted to enrolled students only.

Once a Blackboard site has been created, materials can easily be used for a future instance of the course. Since old course pages remain available to instructors, Blackboard provides instructors with a comprehensive record of their past class activity.

Since Blackboard communicates with the registrar's system, faculty will not need to keep tabs of changing student enrollments during the term. Access for currently enrolled students is handled automatically.

Blackboard offers a number of collaborative tools which can be used to facilitate student work: on-line discussion boards, group areas, blogs and wikis. Blackboard also contains tools which make course administration easier: an e-mail tool, an on-line gradebook, on-line quizzes and surveys, and a tool to facilitate the collection of electronic documents from students.

What kind of materials can I post within Blackboard?

A wide variety of materials can be posted within Blackboard. Text can be composed directly into any area (Announcements, Course Information, Assignments, etc.).

Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, PDF files, images, even audio and video files or podcasts can be posted within any section of the course site.

I am a new instructor and would like to begin working in Blackboard as soon as possible. Can I have access?

Yes, if new instructors cannot log into Blackboard, contact OTM with your name, course, and Suffolk ID number (if known).

On occasion, access to Blackboard might be delayed for new employees due to the process of integrating accounts into various information systems.

 

I seem to have two Blackboard sites for my course - can these be joined?

Faculty who are teaching both graduate and undergraduate students in one course often end up with two course web sites. This is because Blackboard course sites are created automatically from the course information in the Registrar's database. To merge multiple courses into one on Blackboard please contact OTM with the course numbers for the courses you would like to combine and, also, please indicate which course you would like to be the master course. The master course will be the course that you edit on Blackboard. It is best if the master course is the course that has the most students registered in it. The Office of Technology Management will make sure that all of the students have access to the Blackboard material. If a student registers late for one of the merged courses that is not the Master class, please contact OTM requesting for the student to have access to the Blackboard material. This process is manual and will usually be completed in three to five business days.

How do I make my course available to students?

By default, course are initially unavailable to students so that faculty can revise a course as necessary without students seeing all of the changes. Only once you have completed changes and are ready for students to get in to the course will you make the course available to students. This is something you must do each semester. For the easy steps showing how to do this go to  Making My Course Available.

What's the difference between Course Copy and Export?

Copy - Use the Copy a Course to update course content for the upcoming semester course using information from a previous course. This feature will copy all of content from a previous course to a current course. 

There is also a copy feature located on each individual document uploaded within a course that is best used to copy and move documents around within that same course.

Export/Import - Use "Export Course" to save all or parts of the course structure. Exporting does not include student activities or student roster. This feature only exports the information created in the course and gives the option to select individual content areas to be exported into an existing course. The exported course will be saved as a .zip file and may be imported into a different course. For more information, go to Export A Course and Importing Course Content.

Student FAQ

Why can't I access all the courses for which I am registered this term?

There may be two explanations as to why students cannot access Blackboard courses for the current term:

  1. The instructor has not made the Blackboard course available to students. Students are encouraged to check with their instructor to see what plans are established for distributing course materials.
  2. The student has recently registered for the course and Blackboard has not yet updated its data from the registrar's system (Datatel). Blackboard's enrollment data is updated six times daily during the first three weeks of the term, and once daily after that. Once a student is officially enrolled in a course, Blackboard will have that information after the next data update.
I am auditing a course. How do I get access to that course's Blackboard site?

You can ask your instructor to send OTM an email requesting that you be added.  We will need the course and section name, name of the instructor, and your name and e-mail address. We are not able to act on student requests without a note or confirmation from the instructor.

What does cross-listed mean?

When a single course is offered as a graduate level course and an undergraduate level course, it is said to be “cross-listed”. Professors will receive two rosters for cross listed courses: one list with the students who are registered for the graduate section, and one list with the students who are registered for the undergraduate section. In Blackboard, this single course will be split into a graduate student section and an undergraduate student section. Students will only be able to access the information that is loaded into the section they are registered for.

What do I do if I am in a cross-listed course and I can’t access any of the material loaded on Blackboard?

When the professor loads information onto Blackboard for a cross-listed course, the information is loaded only to the graduate section. This means that students who are registered for the undergraduate section of the course will not be able to see this information. Undergraduate students who do not yet have access to the graduate section will have to ask their professor to contact the Office of Technology Management. Professors should contact OTM with the student’s name and the section of the course on Blackboard that the student needs access to.

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