Known Issues

On this page you’ll find a list of known issues and ongoing problems with Blackboard Learn and related services and tools.


Planned downtime:

See details of scheduled Blackboard and Turnitin maintenance

UoR IT Services’ Status page:

Please visit the link https://itsstatus.reading.ac.uk/ to check live status.

Blackboard Learn Status (including Collaborate and Ally):

Please visit the link https://status.blackboard.com/ to check live status.

Turnitin Status:
Please visit  the link https://turnitin.statuspage.io/ to check live status.

EMA Integration:

For issues relating to EMA Integration, follow this link: EMA Integration: Known issues


Please click on the title of an issue to see further information about it.

Known Issues: Blackboard Status
Please see solution
Issue: Text editor in Blackboard Test is not visible
Description: When creating Blackboard test questions or answering feedback the text editor doesn’t appear or is greyed out.
This issue is either caused by Pop-ups being blocked, browser cache, or browser extensions.Solution: To fix the issue please:

Please see solution
Issue: Unable to open files from Blackboard (Server error, 404 – File or directory not found)
Information: Users of the Microsoft Edge browser receive an error when trying to open Word, PowerPoint and other file attachments from Blackboard. Edge attempts to open MS Office files inside the browser but they fail to open.
This is an issue with the “Open office files in the browser” feature in Microsoft Edge.

This issue has been resolved in in Edge version 100.Solution:

  • Update Edge to the latest stable release.
  • If this is not possible, switch off the “Open office files in the browser” setting in Microsoft Edge (see below).
  • Use a different browser (e.g. Chrome or Firefox).

Steps to switch off “Open office files in the browser”:

  • In Edge, copy and paste edge://settings/downloads in the browser address bar and press Enter.
  • Or click on the 3 dots in the top right-hand corner of  the browser.
  • Select Settings.
  • Click on Downloads.
  • Toggle the “Open office files in the browser” setting to Off.

For more information see this Blackboard support article.

Resolved
Resolved

Embedded Box of Broadcasts videos 

If you are not already logged in to Box of Broadcasts, embedded videos display a message “Please sign into bob and refresh this page”. Clicking on this takes you to the BoB login page in a new browser tab.
After signing in to BoB, you have to return to Blackboard and Refresh the page in order to watch the embedded video.This appears to be intended behaviour, but it can appear to users that the login is not working. Using a WAYFless link as described in our guide Linking to Box of Broadcasts might provide the best user experience.
Ongoing

Blackboard Annotate: Cropped images with text-wrapping not visible 

In some cases, images inserted into Word documents and submitted to a Blackboard assignment do not display in Blackboard Annotate. This applies if students

  • crop the image
  • and use Tight, Through, or Parallel wrapping modes to wrap the text around the image.

cropped and wrapped image in Word

The image will display correctly if you download the file and view it in Word.

Ongoing

Blackboard: Previewing an Image before uploading results in errors

In a course Content area if you choose:
Build Content -> Image -> Preview

Do not click Submit on the Preview screen.

If you do, an error will be displayed.

To attach the image successfully, from the Preview screen choose Back and Submit from the Image properties screen, or alternatively do not go into the Preview mode and simply Submit.

Ongoing

Blackboard assessments: Audio / Video feedback 

After setting up your microphone or camera, you MUST close the Recording window, then reopen it again to make your recording. If you try to record immediately after setting up your microphone, without closing and reopening the window, your recording will be silent.

Further details

Ongoing
Ongoing

Blackboard Rubrics: Percentage range rubrics do not display selected grade to students

If you mark work using a Blackboard scoring rubric which is set up as a Percentage Range rubric, students will see their overall mark, and will see which cells of the rubric have been highlighted. However they will not see the actual score you have assigned for each cell.

Blackboard Rubric - staff view

Blackboard Percentage Range Rubric – staff view when marking

 

Blackboard Rubric - student view

Blackboard Percentage Range Rubric – when viewed by the student

Ongoing

Blackboard Rubrics: Changing a Qualitative Blackboard Assignment rubric resets grade to 0.00

If you’ve used a qualitative rubric with your Blackboard Assignment, once you give the attempt you’re making a grade, making any further changes to the rubric will automatically reset the grade to 0. If you need to edit your rubric after the fact, please make a note of the grade you’ve previously assigned as you will have to re-enter it. If you’re using a scoring rubric, the issue does not exist as the new grade will automatically be assigned by the rubric itself.
Ongoing

Blackboard Tests: Auto-Submit on Tests can cause problems for students

We recommend that you do NOT tick the Auto-Submit box when deploying a Test as there is a known issue where, if students have an unreliable internet connection, this setting could lead to their attempts being submitted prematurely.
Blackboard also recommend turning off the “force completion” option, so that if a student experiences technical issues and is logged out of the test, they can resume and complete the test.For further advice on settings to use with timed tests, see Blackboard Tests: Timer, Autosubmit and Force Completion settings
Ongoing

 

Known Issues: Blackboard Collaborate Status
Resolved

Blackboard Collaborate: Browser freezes intermittently when sharing application or screen on Windows

Some users have reported that browsers freeze, or becomes unresponsive, intermittently when sharing an application, or sharing their screen in Collaborate Ultra on Windows. This issue does not affect all users and does not occur during all sessions. The issue has reportedly occurred while using different browser versions on Windows.
Resolution/Workaround:

  • One workaround is to try using a different supported browser until a fix is released.
  • Another possible workaround for moderators who are appsharing presentations is to upload the file to the whiteboard instead, if possible. This is also a best practice for optimizing bandwidth consumption.
  • Use Firefox to Application Share

More information about the issue: click here

Please see workaround

Blackboard Collaborate: Audio breaking up and cracking when using Mac OS “Big Sur” or “Catalina” and Safari 14

When using Mac OS “Big Sur” 11.0 or “Catalina” 10.15 and Safari 14 with Collaborate Ultra the audio a user hears is breaking up or cracking.
Affected Platforms
Mac OS “Big Sur” 11.0 and Safari 14
Mac OS “Catalina” 11.0 and Safari 14

Resolution/Workaround:
If Safari 14 is installed on your computer, please plan on using either Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox with Collaborate Ultra sessions.

More information about the issue: click here

Please see workaround

Blackboard Collaborate: some features temporarily disabled

For platform stability during this time of unprecedented demand, the following Collaborate features have been temporarily disabled by Blackboard:

  • Timer
  • Chat typing indicator
  • Netstats bandwidth indicator (tells you how strong someone’s internet connection is)
Ongoing

Blackboard Collaborate: Unable to join sessions using Chromebook devices

Blackboard Collaborate Ultra will not support versions of Google Chrome below version 79 – see Collaborate Ultra supported browsers.

Chromebook devices running Chrome version 78 or earlier will be presented with an error when attempting to join a Blackboard Collaborate Ultra session. Please update your browser to the latest Chrome version.

If you are unable to update Chrome, you may be able to install an alternate browser from the Google Play Store:

  • Microsoft Edge
  • Mozilla Firefox (requires a touch-screen device)
Old browsers no longer supported

Blackboard Collaborate: Mac OS 10.15 Catalina

Users running Mac OS 10.15 Catalina may experience issues starting appshare while using Ultra. Visit this Blackboard support article for more information: Ultra Experience – Mac OS 10.15 Catalina users are unable to appshare.

Resolution/Workaround:
1. Select the Apple in the upper left hand corner of the screen
2. Select System Preference
3. Select Security & Privacy
4. Note: You will need to unlock this window to make changes by clicking on the lock in the bottom left corner of this window
5. Select the Privacy tab at the top of the dialog box
6. Scroll down on the left hand side of the screen to Screen Recording
7. Check the box next to Google Chrome or whichever browser you are running
8. You will then be prompted to restart your browser
9. Launch your Ultra session again and start appshare

Please see Resolution

Blackboard Collaborate: Collaborate not Loading

If you are trying to join a session but the purple wheel keeps spinning for longer than usual, please ensure “Third Party Cookies” are not being blocked by your browser.

Resolution/Workaround:

To fix the issue, please go to browser settings and change the setting to allow “Third Party cookies”. To open the cookies settings page in Chrome, copy and paste “chrome://settings/content/cookies” into your Chrome address bar and press enter.

Please see Resolution

Blackboard Collaborate: Microsoft Edge users

If you are using Microsoft Edge browser and can’t hear the moderator or presenter.

Resolution/Workaround:

Please try to leave the session and join again. If that doesn’t work, please use Chrome browser instead.
Please note that as of 01 July 2020 Collaborate no longer supports Native Microsoft Edge. If you have admin privileges on your computer you can Download Microsoft Edge (Chromium) which is supported.

Please see Resolution

Blackboard Collaborate: Users are sometimes unable to join a Collaborate session via the telephone

“Some users are experiencing a busy or unavailable signal when trying to join a session via telephone. We are aware of this issue and are working to increase our dial-in capacity for sessions as we know this is an important feature. In the short-term, users who wish to join their session via a mobile device should use their mobile browser.

Collaborate is optimized for the Safari browser on iOS devices and the Chrome browser on Android devices.

For additional best practices on how to use Collaborate, please see these best practices for Moderators and these best practices for Participants.”

Ongoing
Ongoing

 

Known Issues: Turnitin Status
Turnitin: Turnitin now display submission “Due Date” as UTC equivalent of its UK time to students
Description: Turnitin now displays submission “Due Date” as UTC equivalent of UK time for students who are outside UK or those who have their computers configured to a Timezone other than UK time (i.e. UTC +00:00 Dublin, Edinburgh, Lisbon, London).
Recommendation for students: Students are advised to ensure their computers are configured to correct Time Zone and ensure date and time on their computers is up to date.
Recommendation for Staff: If you mention assignment due date in assignment description or course announcements, please clearly specify that the assignment is due at 12PM GMT or BST (e.g. the assignment is due at 12PM GMT).

Please see Recommendation
Turnitin – Issue accessing Turnitin from Grade Centre

Description: 

Staff were unable to access Turnitin assignment from the grade centre.

Solution: 
Turnitin have resolved this issue. You can now open Turnitin submissions from the Grade Centre (except where anonymous marking is enabled), as well via Control Panel > Tools > Turnitin Assignments (our recommended route).

Resolved
Turnitin – Time out error: ‘Your session has expired…’

Description: 

You may receive the following error message when trying to upload a document to Turnitin

Workaround / Solution: 
To continue using Turnitin, please fully close and re-enter this assignment. Refreshing your browser will not resolve this issue.’
You can resolve this by clearing your browser’s cache and cookies. In most cases, this will resolve the issue.
If you still receive this error after clearing cookies and cache, please try a different browser (e.g., if you are using Safari, try Google Chrome).

Ongoing

Turnitin Assignment: Microsoft files generated using Windows can occasionally fail to process when uploaded to Turnitin

Microsoft files generated using Windows, including .doc, .docx, .xls, .xlsx, .pptx, .ppt, .ppsx, and .pps files, can occasionally fail to process when uploaded to Turnitin. Files created using other operating systems are unaffected.

Resolution/Workaround: Convert your file to a PDF before attempting to upload it to Turnitin. This ensures it is in a format we can process gracefully and without any problems. Find out more here.

Ongoing
Ongoing

Turnitin Assignment view page: Turnitin error code

We are aware of some unusual error code appearing at the top of the Turintin assignment view page, e.g  {if(—-.defineProperty&Object)try{v……..). This code is only visible to users with Admin permissions. Doesn’t affect Turnitin functionality. Please continue using Turinitin.

Affected users: BB users with Admin permissions.

Resolution/Workaround: We will be deploying the fix when its most convenient to do so.

 

Ongoing
Resolved
Ongoing

Turnitin: Downloading some/multiple files can result in errors

When trying to download multiple Grading papers (papers with markup and similarity layers visible) from the Turnitin Assignment inbox or Feedback Studio, you may encounter issues with some files not downloading. This happens when a file has a very large number of small similarity report matches, making the file large in size, taking a long time to render and become ready to download.

Image showing the Turnitin assignment inbox with papers selected and the "Download grading paper" option highlighted.

If you download multiple files, you may have some of them missing from the zip file generated.

Turnitin are aware of the issue and are working on resolving this.

If you have any questions please contact us at it@reading.ac.uk.

Ongoing

Is the issue you’re experiencing not listed? Please email CQSD TEL at it@reading.ac.uk and we will follow up with you.