Problem: Students taking a test in which the availability window has been reached may encounter broken images in questions.
Solution: This is a known bug in Bb, for which we do not have a resolution/fix. Workarounds include removing the availability end date, or instructing students to start the test with enough time to finish before the availability window ends.
Problem: On some browsers/resolutions, when setting a test to display questions “One at a Time”, the form is jumbled in a way that looks like you are also prohibiting backtracking.
Solution: If you experience this behavior, note that the checkbox on that line prevents backtracking. You can select the circular radio button to deliver one question at a time, and leave the checkbox blank to allow backtracking:
Problem: Earlier versions of Respondus may fail to update/register after being installed.
Solution: Logging into the UVM Software Archive, downloading the Respondus installer listed there, and entering the registration information provided on that page will allow the registration and/or updates to proceed.
Problem: Due to security concerns, instructors may encounter difficulty adding embedded content from some sites via iframe. Pasting iframe embed code into the HTML box in the content editor may not save as expected for some sites.
Solution: If you are attempting to embed material from an external site and encountering trouble doing so, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and include the steps you are taking to embed, as well as the embed code and url you are using.
Embedding files from the content collection: As a side effect of the security changes, the process for embedding files has changed. To embed one of these files, the iframe src must use a relative “permanent” link for the file:
Find the file in the content collection, click on the grey chevron to the right of the file name, then select “360˚ View”.
Copy only the relative path of the Permanent URL (i.e. /bbcswebdav/xid-43414430_1 ). Don’t include https://bb.uvm.edu.
When embedding the iFrame (i.e. using the HTML button on an item in a course), use that relative path as the src for the iframe, i.e. <iframe src="/bbcswebdav/xid-43414430_1"
Problem: Items in a course will appear to be re-ordered/re-arranged, but then revert to the original order when re-visiting the page. This has been reported to affect assignments, test questions, content items, and other course materials.
Solution: While we are waiting on a proper fix for this, the workaround below has been reported as successfully fixing the problem:
Move one item in the list to another folder, content area, etc.
Move that item back to the folder with the ordering problem.
Problem: Students are unable to view the My Grades area when at least one of their grades meets all of the following criteria:
Grade/attempt has been marked as “Exempt”.
There is no score entered for the grade.
A comment/feedback entry has been attached to the grade.
Solution: The simplest workaround for this issue is for the instructor to set a non-null value for all exempt cells (i.e. “0.00”, not “–“). Removing the exemption and/or the comments will also prevent the error from appearing.
Update: The vendor has rolled back the changes, and the Assignment tool should be functioning as expected.
Problem: The vendor that provides the inline grading, commenting, and annotation service to Bb has pushed out changes that affect how inline grading displays and functions. This update has included some bugs, which Bb is working with the vendor to address.
Problem: Items that are available, but which are added to a parent folder which is unavailable, generate notifications.
Solution: This appears to be a known bug, with a targeted resolution in a future release. In the meantime, items that should not be visible to students should be set to be unavailable. Setting a date restriction on an item will allow it to be managed in bulk using the Date Management Tool.
Problem: Download Results in Grade Center incorrectly saves the file in different ways depending on if Chrome or IE is used. The data is correct and is comma or tab separated appropriately as selected but the file either has no extension, when it should have .csv (comma separated) or .xls (tab separated) and/or the filename is not in the correct format.
Workaround: This is a known issue that is fixed in a future release. In the meantime, renaming the file after download to add the proper extension will let you open it in your spreadsheet program.
Problem: When viewing materials in FireFox, the white background sometimes does not extend far enough down. This causes text to be presented on a grey background and thus be less readable.
Solution: As a workaround, using Chrome or another supported browser when viewing a course appears to address this issue. In the meantime, we are attempting to document replication steps which can be provided to the vendor for a resolution.
Problem: When grading an assignment, some assignment files present an error after clicking the download file button.
Solution: We are working to find out the cause of this issue. In the meantime if you experience this problem, the workaround is to download all assignment files at once. This can be done by going into the grade center, clicking on the button to the right of the column name, and selecting Assignment file Download.
Problem: Students who drop a course in Banner/myUVM are not being removed from the corresponding Bb course space. This is an issue with the Blackboard process that handles the data import/update feed. Please note that all enrollments in Banner/myUVM are accurate – this is a Bb only issue.
Solution: ETS is working to implement a solution to this, and we hope to have a fix soon. In the meantime, students can hide courses in their course list by managing their course list in Bb; they can also edit their notifications for their Bb courses by clicking on their name in the upper right of the screen, then settings, then Edit Notification Settings. Instructors can use the following workarounds to help alleviate the symptoms of this issue:
Update: While we continue to work with Bb to address this problem, we’ve made a temporary change to allow instructors to exclude students from courses. This can be done by:
Go to Control Panel -> Users and Groups -> Users
Searching for individual users to deny access to, or selecting “not blank” to list all users .
Click on the grey button next to a user’s id, and select “Change User’s Availability” for that user.
Setting availability to “No” will deny them access to the course.
Hide rows in the grade center, by clicking on Manage -> Row Visibility.
Mark current users in the grade center as actively enrolled (not dropped) in the course.
Create an excel sheet with two columns, one labeled “Username”, and one labeled “Enrolled” (or some other designation that communicates an active enrollment)
Download the roster from myUVM, and open that in excel
Copy the Netid’s from the myUVM/Banner roster, and paste them beneath the “Username” column that you created in step 1.
In the first row of that second column, type a “Y” (or something similarly appropriate), to denote an active enrollment
Fill down in the second column. You should now have the list of usernames from myuvm, with a Y indicator next to each of them.
Save as .csv and upload to the Grade center
At this point you can create a smart view based on that column. Setting that column to default will give you a default list of active enrollments when you enter the grade center.
To limit group membership to only enrolled students, instructors can do the following:
Create groups as they normally would, however without adding students.
Export the groups into an excel file, by going to Groups -> Export -> Groups only (include header row)
Open this file in excel and delete all other columns besides the Croup Code.
Create a new column next to the Group Code column, and label it User Name
Download the roster from myUVM, open it in excel, copy the NetID column, and paste it under the User Name column you just
created in your groups file.
Manage group membership here by putting the appropriate group codes next to each user name (i.e. selecting some empty columns
and doing Fill Down)
Save this file as .csv with an appropriate name, then go to Groups -> Import and import using the button under the “import group members section”.
Problem: Assignments do not display in-line within the browser in Safari on OSX.
Solution: Use another browser, or modify Safari’s privacy settings to allow the assignments to display in the browser. Depending on your operating system version (to check this, click on the Apple in the upper left corner of your screen, then About this Mac), the steps for this are:
If you are running Sierra, go into Safari > Preferences > Privacy > Cookies and Website Data > set to “Always Allow”
If you are running High Sierra, go to Safari > Preferences > Privacy > unselect Prevent cross-site tracking
Problem: Creating a multiple choice question in the test/survey tool, leaving at least one answer empty, then clicking on the submit button will not save or submit the form. The submit button fails silently and the form is not submitted.
Solution: Clicking the “remove” button next to any blank/unused answers will allow the form to submit normally. There is no targeted release for this issue at this time.
Problem: When going into the grade center and viewing or downloading an assignment attempt, users see an error message similar to “No default constructor found.” We’ve seen this occurring when attempting to access group attempts as well as individual submissions. Blackboard has identified this as a bug, and we are currently working to clarify patch availability.
Solution: Please contact email@example.com as soon as possible if you see this error. In the meantime, the workaround for this issue is to click the chevron next to the Column Title and download all assignment attempts.
This issue is resolved. If you continue to experience trouble, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As part of a recent security update, the below bug was introduced in the grade center.
Problem: Weighted Total columns using a running total may display blank or incorrect values. This is reported to only happen when the calculation results in an infinitely repeating decimal. For example: if the total points for your weighted column was 3 and the only value being included in the running total was a 1, then the resulting “0.33333333…” value would not display correctly in the Weighted Total column.
Solution: The workaround for this is as follows.
Make sure the weighting adds up to 100.
Set Running Total to “No”.
If you must use running totals, be sure to turn it off after all grades are in, as this will ensure the correct grades are displayed to you and the students.
This bug would only have been introduced as of 11/21/17. A future update – to be installed 12/20/17 – will resolve this issue.
Problem: Typing a time into the availability box on an item will result in that time from not being saved. This is occurring in FF and Safari.
Solution: This bug has been identified by Bb as a defect; a fix is included in the release which will be installed in December. In the meantime, use Chrome if you need to edit times by typing in specific times.
Problem: Instructors visiting the “Manage” area of their discussion board may see students who are listed as “Managers,” yet are not in the course. This can happen when a student enrolls in a course (however briefly), and subsequently drops or withdraws. Despite their being listed as a manager in the discussion board, they do not have any access to the course, and they are not listed as a manager if they re-add the course. There is currently no workaround or fix available for this issue.
Problem: While taking an exam, opening a new window/tab in the same browser and creating a new session will break the “Save Answer” button. For example, if a student begins a test, then opens a new tab and goes to myUVM and clicks on the “Blackboard” link, the save answer button will show an error.
Solution: Blackboard has a bug fix which we are currently testing and are working towards deploying. In the meantime, the following workaround will improve the testing experience. During an exam, if multiple tabs/windows in Bb are needed (i.e. for an “open book” exam), open a different browser (i.e. FireFox to navigate your course while the test remains open in the original browser (i.e. Chrome). If a new session has been created in the same browser, and save answer is not working, deleting the cookies and cache then logging back in will allow for resuming the exam.
Problem: After copying a course, links entered into content items have had some attributes removed. This includes the “target” attribute, which is often used to make a link open in a new window/tab.
We have opened a case with Blackboard in the hopes there is a fix for this issue. In the meantime, there is no solution to this problem other than editing the links after the course copy. For longer passages, manually copying and pasting the text/HTML from the old course item into the editor in the new course may help make this process slightly less time intensive.
Problem: When setting a question to allow partial credit, some answers do not display a box to specify credit values.
There are currently no patches available for this bug. While we wait for a fix from Blackboard, the only workaround in this case is to offer fewer answers (i.e. remove any questions without a partial credit box).
Problem: When updating Respondus on Windows 10, an error appears and the update fails to proceed: “This app has been blocked for your protection. RPUPDATE. EXE. An administator has blocked you from running this app.”
Solution: Downloading the most recent version of Respondus from the UVM Software Archive will allow future in-app updates to proceed.
This issue has been resolved. Please contact email@example.com if you experience further trouble.
Problem: When entering an assessment attempt, only the “Save and Next” button is working. All other buttons, including Exit, Save & Exit, previous student and Next student are not functional. This is happening in all browsers, and in multiple courses.
Solution: A fix has been identified, and we are working to test, evaluate, and deploy it. In the meantime, there are some workarounds available, such as using the browser’s back/forward buttons, and clicking on the course navigation links to get back to the grade center.
This issue has been resolved. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you experience further trouble.
Problem: When composing and answering items on a test that is presented with questions all at once, the cursor and screen jump to the last question, on the bottom of the screen, while the user is only partially complete with the test.
Solution: This is an identified bug in Bb. While a patch is being evaluated, instructors can prevent this from happening to students by delivering a test one question at a time. Students can alleviate some of the frustration by composing essay questions offline in a word or text processor and pasting into the text boxes of essay questions.
This issue has been resolved, following a patch from Bb. Please contact email@example.com if you continue to have trouble with this feature.
Problem: The “Last Access” column entries for some students are appearing blank or inaccurate in the Grade Center, Performance Dashboard, and Retention Center however those students have recorded activity in the course.
Solution: We are working with Bb to find a solution to this problem as soon as possible, and have been told a patch is in development. In the meantime, instructors can check student activity by using the course reports feature. This can be done by going to Control Panel -> Evaluation -> Course Reports, clicking on “Overall Summary of User Activity”, and selecting all students and a date range. There is a section of that which that shows a student’s access per day.
Problem: When editing a group set, the list of students will not sort by last name (or other criteria) as expected.
Solution: This is a defect, but Blackboard has not indicated a future release in which it may be fixed. In the meantime, a workaround is to open the Grade Center in a separate tab or window, select the students in the Group Set using a smart view, and sort them as needed. In the other browser window, the group set can be managed normally.
Problem: Instructors attempting to access a discussion forum are prevented from entering, and an “Access Denied” error appears. This happens when a date restriction is set on the forum, with the goal of making it unavailable to students.
Solution: Blackboard has identified this as a bug, and we are waiting on a solution. There is no workaround for this, other than making the forum available temporarily while working on it.
This issue has been resolved. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you experience further trouble.
Problem: Publisher tools, such as Macmillan and WileyPlus, are currently experiencing issues which are causing them to be inaccessible. We are working with Blackboard to find a solution to this issue, and hope to have this resolved shortly.
Problem: Mathematical equation images generated in the text editor are occasionally appearing corrupted or distorted. These images can be generated using the built-in equation editor, or by using “MathJax” notation and surrounding LaTex text with double dollar signs. This may occur during equation placement in tests, discussions, or elsewhere in a course.
Problem: On tests with large numbers of questions (i.e. more than 50), students may encounter problems saving or submitting the assessment.
Solution: Instructors delivering assessments with over 50 questions should consider delivering the questions one at a time, which can be done by editing the test options and choosing “One at a time” in the Test Presentation section.
Problem: When attempting to add a question to an assessment, an error is presented saying “Unable to parse provided PkId string.”
Solution: This has been resolved. Users experiencing this issue are encouraged to contact email@example.com. A workaround to this issue can be found by editing the test, then clicking on “Question Settings” to the upper right, then unchecking the “Question Metadata” box on section 3 of that page will prevent the error.
Problem: Attempting to embed YouTube videos using the Mashups tool and/or the Video Everywhere tool does not work.
Solution: This is an identified bug that Blackboard has identified as fixed in the next release, which is expected to be applied in December. The current workarounds are to embed the video by clicking the html button in the text editor and pasting the embed code; post a link to the video along with the description; or to use UVM Streaming Media tool.
[This has been resolved.] There is currently a delay in the data feed that updates Blackboard with enrollment information from the Registrar’s system. Currently the feed is running once daily Monday through Friday, rather than every two hours. ETS is working on a resolution to this issue. In the meantime, updates to Blackboard enrollments and TA additions can be expected on the morning of business days.
Problem: Links to courses that are open to unauthenticated guests bring visitors to the login page, rather than directly to the course.
Solution: While there is no fix for this yet, Bb has provided a workaround while we are researching a solution. This workaround is as follows, however users can also simply browse to the “Guest Access” link on the login page, and search for the course by name or ID.
When building the URL, start with the guest access link. This logs them in as “guest” automatically: https://bb.uvm.edu/webapps/login?action=guest_login&new_loc=
The “new_loc=” variable allows you to add any in-system link, starting with “/Webapps” etc. For example, the relative path to the course with the ID 12345 looks something like this: /webapps/blackboard/execute/modulepage/view?course_id=_12345_1&cmp_tab_id=_4741_1&mode=view
However the link after the new_loc= variable MUST BE ENCODED! Use a service like http://meyerweb.com/eric/tools/dencoder/ to encode the link like so: %2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Fmodulepage%2Fview%3Fcourse_id%3D_12345_1%26cmp_tab_id%3D_4741_1%26mode%3Dview
So the full link would be: https://bb.uvm.edu/webapps/login?action=guest_login&new_loc=%2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Fmodulepage%2Fview%3Fcourse_id%3D_12345_1%26cmp_tab_id%3D_4741_1%26mode%3Dview
You can change the PK1 number of the course (above indicated as 12345) to whatever course you want. You can also start with a different relative path, i.e. to link to the announcements area you’d start with this in steps 2 & 3:
Problem: Some students have reported missing annotations on assignments in the Crocodoc Inline Assignment viewer.
Solution: Switching browsers has resolved the issue in some cases. Students should follow these steps to view annotations to ensure they are clicking on the correct buttons to view assignment annotations. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with browser and operating system versions if you have students reporting missing annotations.
This issue has been resolved. Please contact email@example.com if you continue to have problems accessing Bb as a guest.
Problem: When entering a course as a guest (non-authenticated user), users are redirected to the login page or see an error message.
Solution: Some browsers have been reported to work better than others when accessing a course using guest access. While we await a solution from Blackboard, it is recommended that users attempt to enter the course using Internet Explorer or Firefox.
Problem: An issue with Respondus not connecting to Bb has been identified. This is preventing the upload and download of assessments to Bb courses.
Solution: The following workaround will allow publication of assessments. Assessments can be manually published by going to Respondus->Preview & Publish->Publish to Blackboard->Publish Wizard->”Save pool to local file for manual upload”->”Test with points”. After saving the local file, it can be manually uploaded into a course with a web browser, by going into the course’s test, surveys and pools area, and clicking on the Import test button.
Alternatively, the following steps will allow Respondus to sync normally with your Bb course:
That said, Respondus has provided the following steps that should allow the application to properly sync with Bb:
Update Respondus to version 188.8.131.52. If you’ve installed it recently, you may be able to update it by going to Help->Check for updates. Otherwise, go to https://www.uvm.edu/software/distribution/windows/respondus/Respondus184.108.40.206.exe – then installing, and registering the software (you can access the registration data, if needed, here: https://www.uvm.edu/software/distribution/licensing/respondus/respondus.html).
Open Internet Explorer and log into Bb by going to bb.uvm.edu.
Leaving IE open in the background, open Respondus.
If editing an existing assessment, Click on Preview & Publish -> Publish to Blackboard. If retrieving an assessment, click retrieval and reports.
Click Publish Wizard
From the Blackboard Server dropdown, select “Add New Server”.
Choose “Yes, check for preconfigured server setting.”
Enter an appropriate name for the connection, such as “UVM Bb (New)”
Click the “Next” button to run the connection test.
Click on the “Login w/ UVM NetID” link. IMPORTANT: do not log in on this screen, be sure to click the link and log in on the following screen.
Enter your login information on this (the webauth) screen.
Once you are logged in, click on the “Close after Login” button on the upper right.
Problem: When an instructor is using the assignment tool and associated grade center column, but students submit an assignment outside of the assignment tool, the instructor cannot use the Rubric Tool to create a grade. For example, if students send their assignments via email or provide a paper version instead of using the online dropbox, there is no submission recorded in the grade center column for that assignment. This means that the instructor cannot use the Rubric Tool to calculate and provide feedback on the grade.
Solution: This is a known issue, however Blackboard has not indicated a fix as being planned in a future release. Workarounds aren’t ideal, and include asking students to submit an empty document digitally in addition to the alternative (paper, email, etc) submission.
Problem: Some users have reported that when subscribed to a discussion board forum, they are not receiving emails as expected when someone posts a message in that forum.
Solution: Blackboard has confirmed this as a bug, in which some users in a course have their subscriptions erroneously disabled when another user is removed (i.e. drops and/or withdraws) from a course. This is fixed in the next version of Bb, however there are no workarounds available.
Problem: Downloading an assignment in the grade center, then entering feedback into the feedback column in Excel, then uploading the file to the Grade Center, does not result in the feedback being saved.
Solution: This is a known bug, and a fix is expected (though not garaunteed) sometime in mid-December. In the meantime, feedback can be entered via the web interface on a supported browser.
Problem: When viewing an assignment in the Bb Grader mobile application, assignments are not displayed, and attempting to open them in a different application results in no action.
Solution: UVM does not yet support inline grading of assignments. This means that assignments will need to be downloaded and graded within the web interface on a laptop or desktop computer, in a supported browser.
Problem: Blackboard has released a new mobile application that allows instructors to enter grades via an iPad or tablet. However, connecting to UVM via this application does not currently work.
Solution: UVM does not yet support mobile grading using this application. This is expected to change sometime in mid-December, however there is no guarantee that this timeline is accurate. In the meantime, instructors can grade assignments and other student work via the standard web interface in a supported browser. Please note that Blackboard is not the official place for final grade submission – final grades must be entered into the Registrar’s system.
This issue has been resolved. If you continue to experience performance issues, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blackboard is experiencing performance issues – these are actively being investigated and we hope to have a solution soon. In the meantime, one quick troubleshooting step is to try deleting your browser’s cookies, and then logging in again directly to https://bb.uvm.edu.
Problem: The new layout of the blog and journal interface that is presented by default to instructors makes it look like there are no entries.
Solution: Clicking on the arrows on either side of the instructor’s name in he grey column on the right will show other user’s entries. Also clicking on your name in the grey column will show a list of other user’s posts. These screenshots illustrate the buttons needed to click to see student blog posts:
This has been resolved. If you continue to see this problem, please contact email@example.com as soon as possible.
Problem: Deploying an assessment in a content area displays a “NullPointerException”. The test can be seen and previewed when edit mode is off, but no other content in the content area is visible. Further, attempting to access the “Tests” or “Surveys” area of the “Tests, Surveys and Pools” section of a course displays a similar error.
We are working directly with Blackboard to find a resolution to this issue as soon as possible. In the meantime, please note the following work-arounds:
Students can still access and submit deployed exams. Results of these exams can be graded and feedback provided via the Grade Center and My Grades, respectively.
Tests can still be deployed, just not in areas where another test is currently deployed.
Deployed tests/quizzes can be edited by going into the grade center, clicking on the grey icon next to the column name for the test, and choosing “Edit Test”. From there instructors can add/edit the questions, or edit the options by selecting from the grey button to the right of the test name in the edit test screen.
Content that shares a content area with a deployed assessment will be inaccessible to the instructor, however students may in some cases be able to access that content.
Instructors can access sub-folders that exist in the same area as a deployed test by clicking the folder icon at the top of the course menu and navigating from there.
To deploy a new tests, deploying each test in its own folder will allow tests to be delivered to students without interfering with instructor access to the rest of the content areas. For example, one might create a new content area on the left hand menu entitled “Quizzes 2”, and structure it like so:
Problem: Embedded YouTube videos and similar content are not displaying in some browsers. This is due to a change in how browsers display non-encrypted content (http) inside of an encrypted environment (https).
Solution: Here is a description for students (and instructors) for how to temporarily view embedded files that appear blank in Firefox:
If upon entering a course or content area that appears to have a blank video, look in the browser’s address bar for a grey “shield” icon.
This is a short term solution. Here are some steps on how to make sure that students have access to the videos, both in the short term and the long term.
Edit the embed code so that all links in the code start with “https://”, and not “http://”.
Post the URL as a link to the video’s YouTube page in addition to the embedded video. By always providing a link to the original video in addition to embedding it, there’s a better chance that any students having connection or browser issues (i.e. attempting to load the videos in various unsupported mobile browsers) will be able to access the video directly. This also provides some context, so instead of just seeing the blank area where the video will be, the students will see that a) it’s a video link, and b) where to go to try to launch it in a different environment.
If the videos are owned by you (i.e. the instructor) or UVM, consider using the UVM supported Streaming Media tool. This will make things a bit easier to support, and will be more likely to retain some stability and support over time.
Newer browsers may not support older embed code. Try re-embedding the video by going to the YouTube page for the video and copying the code under the embed option, then pasting it back into your course item.
Problem: When creating announcements and checking the “send email” box, the resulting email message body may contain HTML tags. This has been confirmed to occur when using “Smart Text” with the text editor off, but may happen with the visual editor as well.
Solution: There is no solution available at this time, however Bb has indicated that this is resolved in a future release. The workaround is currently to avoid using HTML formatting where possible when creating announcements that need to be sent as emails.
Problem: When sending an email to selected students from the grade center, and including a BCC or CC address, the message body arrives empty.
Solution: There is no resolution for this issue at this time. Blackboard has indicated that this is fixed in the next version of blackboard. The workaround when sending email from the Grade Center is to turn the Text Editor OFF, and not use BCC option or Include list of recipients option.
Problem: Settings appear in tool creation and other areas (such as when creating a Discussion Board forum) that pertain to an “Alignments” function. However, these alignments settings don’t do anything.
Solution: Fields referencing “Alignments” can be ignored – they are remnants of a Blackboard feature that is not currently being deployed (but which is being evaluated). Their presence has been identified as a bug, which is fixed in the next release of Blackboard.
This has been resolved. Please report any further problems to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Links created in the visual text box editor in Blackboard display with no underline and in some themes are not differentiated by color. A patch is forthcoming from Blackboard, however a temporary fix is being pursued to address this in the short term.
This issue has been resolved. If you continue to experience these symptoms, please contact email@example.com to report them.
Problem: Users have reported sporadic delays in page loads.
Solution: ETS has identified a possible cause for these performance issues and is working to apply a solution. Users who experience these problems should attempt to log out and then log back in again. There is no other workaround identified at this time.
Problem: Some users have reported problems when logging in, noting that a large red error message is displayed. This has been documented as happening after logging into Bb from myUVM, then logging out of Bb from Bb. Attempting to log in via Bb directly produces the error.
Solution: Clearing the browser’s cookies has been identified as a possible solution, as has logging in with another browser. Alternatively, going back to myUVM and logging in to Bb from within myUVM may also work. If you continue to have problems logging in, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Problem: Increasing the font size in some versions of Firefox causes the last name in the Grade Center to disappear from view (the student is still in the course, just not visible in the Grade Center).
Solution: This is resolved in a future version of Blackboard. In the meantime reducing the font size or clicking on the “Screen reader” link above the Grade Center will reveal the hidden student.
Update: This will still show an error, however users will now see a link at the top of the page that allows them to download the PDF:
Problem: Students clicking on a PDF that has been added to a course using the File command (see image) are presented with a grey screen and an error message that refers to a “missing plugin”. This has been reported on various browsers on Apple computers, including Firefox and Safari.
Faculty: Here’s how to make sure your PDF’s are accessible to your students.
Click the grey chevron drop-down menu button next to the file name and choose Edit (you must be in “edit mode” to do this).
Scroll to the option to “Open in New Window” and click Yes.
Students: If you are experiencing this problem, click on the link at the top of the page to download the PDF and open it on your computer.
Problem: Guests cannot access files in a course, and are prompted with a login box followed by 401 “forbidden” error after trying to access the files. This occurs for files that have been uploaded to a course after May 22nd 2011.
Solution: To make a file available to guests,
Click on the grey chevron button next to the file name, and choose “Edit”.
This has been resolved, and the Calendar tool has once again been made available.
Due to a critical bug in the Calendar module, this tool has been turned off. A fix for the bug is expected in the next release of Blackboard, but a timeline is not available for when this will be patched.
The normal course calendar tools should work as expected.
When trying to import an archive or export file, an error is displayed and the process fails if the file is larger than 250MB. This is a known bug that is resolved in 9.1. In the meantime, contact email@example.com to request the file be restored manually by an administrator.
Students with the same first and last names within a course are indistinguishable in areas such as the discussion board, groups management, messages, and email. This is a long standing bug in Blackboard, for which we are awaiting a resolution.
This has been resolved. If you continue to encounter this problem, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have received reports of inconsistent course menu behavior where links on the menu will simply disappear and reappear. We (and other institutions) have submitted this problem to Blackboard. They are aware of the problem, and are researching the cause and a solution. In the meantime, a work-around that has been effective is switching to “Folder View” for the course menu. See a screenshot and directions.
This is a most troublesome (and elusive) issue and we are trying to provide Blackboard with additional information regarding this problem. If you are experiencing this issue with your course menu, please fill out this brief form.
Please include the following information:
The 5-Digit CRN of the course you are seeing the issue happening in
When viewing a discussion board thread with a significant number of entries, the text overlaps with the entry listing, causing the entry to be difficult or impossible to read.
This is an identified bug. A resolution has not been identified yet for a future release. To prevent this from happening in the meantime, switch out of “maximize” view when viewing threaded discussions. This can be achieved by clicking the “minimize” button to the upper right of the discussion thread:
Instructors have reported problems downloading assignment files from the grade center. This problem will occurr if the assignment has a title with special (non-alphanumeric) characters in it.
Solution: To resolve this error, rename the assignment so that it has no characters other than letters and numbers (i.e. no #’s, &’s, etc). As always when making changes to your course, please remember to save a backup first.
UPDATE: A fix has been put in place to address a Blackboard bug that caused users to be prematurely logged out of the system. Additionally, a fix has been applied to prevent Blackboard from logging a user out when their myUVM session ends. If you are experiencing these problems and it has not been resolved after 24 hours, please contact blackboard support at email@example.com, and include the information described below.
Errors encountered during tests and quizzes might include messages when saving answers indicating that the answer could not be saved, or a warning when submitting an exam which erroneously suggests that a number of questions had not been answered.
Blackboard has also suggested that for longer exams (i.e. around 50 questions or more), the exam be delivered one question at a time, and to uncheck the “Force Completion” setting in the test options. This is to prevent the application from being overloaded, and to prevent user’s sessions from timing out.
If you continue to see this problem, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with the following information:
The NetID of the student that experienced the problem
Specific description of the behavior that was encountered
Any error messages the student might have seen while experiencing the problem (in as much detail as possible)
The date and time that the problem/error occurred (as specific as possible)
Update: You can now place content copied from word using the “Paste From Word” Mashup. Find out how.
Sometimes, when text is copied from MSWord into a Bb text box, e.g., a content item, it may have uneven formatting. For instance, paragraph text or spacing may be at different sizes and difficult to reformat.
This is because the text from MS Word contains hidden formatting code that often conflicts with Bb. (While this also happened with the previous version of Bb, it seems to be occurring more frequently in Bb9.)
There are a couple of solutions to controlling the text format.
The most simple solution is to skip MSWord, altogether. Instead, type your text in a plain text editor such as NotePad (in Windows) or TextEdit (in Mac) with no formatting. Then, paste this into the Bb text box and format it with the Bb formatting tools, such as bold, italics, and bullets, seen in image below.
If you have to use MSWord, just know that if you paste that text directly into Bb, you may have formatting problems. The only way to fix them is to “clean” your text of its hidden formatting code (see below) and then re-format it again using the Bb format tools.
The Method for “Cleaning” Text is different for Windows and Mac Users
Open the program, Notepad. (This is installed on all Windows computers) Copy the desired text from your MSWord document (.doc or .docx) and paste it into Notepad. Notepad doesn’t retain that hidden formatting code, so it’s essentially “cleaned.” Now, highlight and copy the text from Notepad and paste it into your Bb text box. Use the Bb formatting tools to create a finished page.
Open the program, TextEdit. (This is installed on all Mac computers, found in Applications.) Before anything else, you’ll need to change one of the TextEdit preferences.Follow these steps (shown in this illustration)
1) Click Preferences 2) Choose Plain Text 3) Close Preferences
Now, copy the desired text from your MSWord document (.doc or .docx) and paste it into TextEdit. This effectively “cleans” the text of the unwanted, hidden code. Then, highlight and copy the text from TextEdit and paste it into your Bb text box. Use the Bb formatting tools to create a finished page.