In recent times, the Blackboard company has been reaching out to its community of institutional users via a series of weekly webinars in what it calls the Blackboard Innovative Teaching Series (BITS). It hosts and records these webinars on Blackboard Collaborate and then releases the recordings on the BITS Channel on YouTube.
Today, I watched episode 27 entitled Blackboard and the Online Collaborative Experience. On show was a three-week on-line course created for staff professional development by the Instructional Designers David Flora, Ericka Hollis, and Xavier Scott of Morehead State University. They demonstrated the use of Blackboard Learn’s collaborative features to get instructors to actively engage with Blackboard’s collaborative features (blog, discussion board, wiki, Blackboard Collaborate) in order to experience what it might be like for students to experience active learning through collaboration. The resulting course has also been awarded one of Blackboard’s exemplary course programme awards and you can self-enrol as a student and view the course site at ecpgallery.coursesites.com (direct link).
As my institution is still climbing the early majority part of the adoption curve, with most of my colleagues using the VLE (which is Blackboard Learn) as a complex Content Management System (CMS), running such a course here might be well worth considering.
The rest of the recorded BITS series is well worth a look and you can sign up for the upcoming live webinars as well: there’s a few good ones coming up in November including Accessibility (14th November), Assessment and Feedback (18th November) and the Flipped Classroom (9 December). They take place at either 11:00 am or 1:00 pm EST (currently 3:00 and 5:00 pm UK time). Perhaps I’ll see you there!