Blackboard Collaborate Web Conferencing is an application for moderating classes, meetings, or other group collaborations where participants can share whiteboards and screens, chat by voice or text, and engage in other ways like taking polls and answering questions.
- 1 Getting started How do I get started?
- 1.1 Plan
- 1.2 Setup on Canvas
- 1.3 What tools can I use with this?
- 2 Available support What support is available?
How do I get started?
Consider how you will use web conferencing first. Some ideas:
- Facilitate lectures and presentations: Without the constraints of a physical space, your lectures and presentations can hold as many people who are interested in attending. You can also co-facilitate with a colleague from another institution, invite guests, take polls and surveys, moderate discussions in smaller breakout chat rooms, and share a recording of your presentation later with those who were not able to attend.
- Facilitate project meetings: Schedule meetings without worrying about travel arrangements or booking rooms. Take advantage of the interactive whiteboard to brainstorm and work out ideas, share documents, and enable the session recording to have an archive of your meeting. In Collaborate Ultra, you can have a maximum of 6 participants using video at the same time, and up to 500 participants in the session at once (if you are planning a session with 250-500 participants, please check the appropriate box on the settings page).
- Hold office hours: Hold online office hours at any time of day. You can hold open discussions or bring students into private, one-on-one sessions by using breakout rooms.
Setup on Canvas
The following steps describe how to add Collaborate Ultra in the course sidebar.
- Log in to your Canvas course, and click Settings in the course sidebar.
- Click the Navigation tab (See Figure 1).
- Look for Collaborate Ultra and click on the three dots icon to Enable it, or drag and drop it to the top to make it visible under your course navigation.
- Click Save.
- Refresh your page and you will see Collaborate Ultra appear in your course sidebar.
Create and edit sessions
- Click Collaborate Ultra in the course sidebar.
- Collaborate Ultra will take few seconds to load.
- Click Create Session from the Sessions screen.
- Type a session's name (e.g. Class 1, Week 1) to help students locate the right session.
- Set the date and time the session starts and ends, but you can also:
- Choose "No end (open session)" to keep a session open.
- Choose "Repeat session".
- Set an "Early Entry" to let students enter the session prior to the start time (very important for microphone and webcam testing with students).
- Check the Session Settings to decide if students can download recordings, share audio or video, post chat messages.
- Click Save to activate the session's link.
Note: you can change settings before the session begins.
- From the Sessions screen, find a session.
- Click the three dots button on the right hand-side and select "Edit settings" in the drop down menu.
Moderate Collaborate Ultra sessions
There is a variety of options to moderate Collaborate Ultra sessions, you can:
- Share content (files, whiteboard, computer screen).
- Facilitate a chat (e.g. students can ask their questions while you are presenting).
- Facilitate group work through Breakout groups.
- Use question polls (e.g. clicker questions).
- Manage attendees.
- Record the session (make sure to select "allow session recording downloads" in the session's settings).
Collaborate Ultra Stand Alone Access:
Request access by filling out this form: Learning Tool Setup Request Form
After receiving access, follow these steps to set up a conference session through the online portal:
- Log into Collaborate Ultra.
- Under Sessions, click Create Session on the top left of the page.
- Fill in session details and click Save.
- Click on the name of your new session to see the Guest link which can be copied and distributed to your session participants.
What tools can I use with this?
Blackboard Collaborate Web Conferencing can be used on its own through the Collaborate Ultra interface. Additionally, Collaborate Ultra can be integrated with Canvas, which allows you to create sessions & review recordings.
What support is available?
Collaborate also offers a "24/7 Technical Support" line that is available to all users, including participants and moderators. This line can be quite handy at resolving technical issues during a live session:
- North America, Toll-Free: 1-(877)-382-2293
- International, Non-Toll-Free: 1-(606)-274-2370