The guidance below relates specifically to interactive online sessions – for example seminars for students who are unable to attend on-campus teaching sessions.
For more detailed information on this, and which platform will best meet your needs, please see How to make online interactive sessions available to students on the TEL website.
The steps you need to follow are as follows:
Schedule the sessions
Go into the Collaborate area of your course and schedule a set of recurring Collaborate sessions.
- Naming your sessions
Give the sessions a name which will be clear and meaningful to students.
The name should reflect the language used in the timetable to describe the session, to help students identify the relevant online session – for example Workshop, Seminar group.
You do not need to include the module code in the name.
- Guest links
You may need to generate a Guest link, for example if you need to invite colleagues who are not enrolled on your course.
Do not advertise the Guest link to students – students should access sessions via the Blackboard course, not via a Guest link.
This will help you to monitor which students are attending the session.
Make sessions available to students
- Scheduled Collaborate sessions are automatically available to everyone enrolled on the Blackboard course.
- To help students access online sessions, add Collaborate to your course menu.
- You can also add a link to Collaborate inside a content area on your course (for example in the ‘About’ section of the course).
You cannot provide a link in Blackboard to a specific Collaborate session.
Communicate session details to students
- Inform students of where they can find the link to each week’s session.
You can do this in various ways – for example by showing students where to go in an introductory screencast.
- Direct students to our support page, Blackboard Collaborate Ultra: Getting Started so they can become familiar with how to access and use the platform.