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Communication Tools

Discussion Board
Wikis
Blogs & Journals
Chat Room and Virtual Classroom
Email
File Exchange
 

Blackboard has a wealth of communication and collaboration tools that can be used within a Blackboard course site. Depending on whether the course site acts as a compliment to a traditional classroom setting or whether it's a hybrid or web-based course will determine on what tools are used most effectively. Blackboard offers both asynchronous and synchronous tools and it's recommended that you familiarize yourself with the various methods of communication before requesting that students use them.

Discussion Board

Particularly in an online-based course, the Discussion Board is an integral part of the class. It is a tool that fosters relationships, increases outside classroom discussion and encourages community. It can be used as a general open discussion tool or as an assignment tool by attaching parameters or gradable expectations around a forum. The Discussion Board is an asynchronous tool meaning that discussion between all users does not take place in real time. Students can add to a discussion without others being present at the same time.

To add a new thread, (think of a thread as a new subject within a forum)

To reply to a thread or post click on the thread title.

Wikis

Blogs & Journals



Chat Room and Virtual Classroom

The Chat Room feature is a basic synchronistic chat tool that allows real time discussion between students and an instructor in a particular course site to occur. The Virtual Classroom is an extended version of the Chat Room that also features a Course Map, Whiteboard, an Ask Question tool and the ability to have Breakout Sessions.

To join a collaboration session:


Email

Course participants can easily send email from within a course site. Please note however that Blackboard is merely the vehicle, the email is sent to a recipient's sf.edu or studentmail.sf.edu inbox and neither sent nor received mail is stored in Blackboard. If you are not receiving email you may need to clean out your inbox. If a student's inbox is full the email will simply be bounced back to the sender. The nice feature about using Blackboard to send email is that you can easily select just your fellow students enrolled in the class.


File Exchange

File Exchange is a feature available as a Group tool. If your instructor has set up groups in your Blackboard course site, students can easily exchange files within their group using the File Exchange under Group Page from within the Communication link. The File Exchange works like the first step in the Digital Drop Box. A student clicks on the ‘Add File' icon, names their file and then browses on their computer for the file to add. The file is then posted on Blackboard and can be accessed by either the other students in that group or by the professor.

 

Frequently Asked Student Questions

For log-in and password help
USS Help Desk
Pope John Paul II Center - Library
ph: 260-399-7700 x 6027
fx: 260-399-8175
helpdesk@sf.edu

Distance, Instruction, & Educational Technology
Pope John Paul II Center 211D
ph: 260-399-7700 x 6027
fx: 260-399-8175