Blackboard Ultra Course View FAQ

Learn more about the benefits of moving to Blackboard Ultra Course View including important changes and the creation, copy, and conversion process.


Why Blackboard Ultra Course View?

Blackboard Ultra Course View is a clean, more modern design:

Key Benefits
  1. Mobile-first design: Use any device, designed for all screen sizes.
  2. Course content: Access all course content from a single page.
  3. Active development: Monthly improvements prioritized by instructor feedback.
Faculty Benefits
  1. Create content: Insert content inline where you want it to display.
  2. Copy content: Copy content from any course, select individual course items, folders, and entire courses to copy with just one click.
  3. Batch edit: Control and update common settings such as visibility and due dates across all content. You can also delete a batch of selected course content.
Student Benefits
  1. Easier access: Built for use on smaller screens such as tablets and smartphones.
  2. Fewer clicks: Course content is easier to navigate and find.
  3. Accessibility: Improved interaction, progress tracking, and accommodation features.

What are the major changes?

Blackboard Ultra Course View highlights:

Course menu is converted to Course Content.

Any content on the Blackboard Original course menu such as the Syllabus, Learning Modules, Assignments, and Exams/Quizzes become a top level folder in Ultra Course View.

Two levels of Course Content to improve accessibility.

Learning Modules and Folders are great ways to organize so course materials are easier to find.

  • Learning Modules are a self contained units. Students can page through content in a linear fashion like a book or a presentation. Learning modules can use forced sequencing, release conditions, and progress tracking.
  • ✔Learning Modules can contain Folders.

    ❌Folders cannot contain Learning Modules.

  • Folders also contain content, students access folder content by opening and closing each piece of content one at a time. Folders can use release conditions to show/hide content based on specific members/groups, date/time, and/or performance conditions.
  • ✔Folders can contain Folders.

    ❌ Learning Modules and Folders cannot contain more than two levels of Folders.

Enhanced communication to improve interaction and engagement.

Announcements: Post timely information critical to course success. Active course announcements can be scheduled and appear the first time students enter your course, students must close the new course announcements window before they can view course content. Announcements can also be sent as an email and appear in the Today and Recent sections of the Activity Stream.

Messages: Add course Messages to communicate with a specific user, groups, or the entire class. Course Messages are a part of course navigation, you can now send messages from anywhere in the course.

Conversations: Build a successful online community for learners interact through conversations. Conversations can be added to content such as documents, assignments, tests, offline submissions, and teaching tools to ask and answer quick questions.

Discussions: Get a detailed analysis to assess student contribution based on idea development sentence complexity, word variation, and critical thinking level.

How do I migrate to Blackboard Ultra Course View?

Blackboard Ultra Course View puts the tools where you need them:

Create course content, upload, drag and drop, and access your cloud storage, content market, and content collection.
  • Course Content Items: Create learning modules, folders, documents, links, and add teaching tools and SCORM packages.
  • Assessments: Create a Test or Assignment.
  • Participation and Engagement: Create a Discussion and Journal assignment.
Copy all or part of your course content from any of the courses you teach with just one click.
  • Copy Content: Select to copy course modules, folders, assignments, discussions, question banks, rubrics, and/or the entire course.
  • Course Content Exceptions: View the number exceptions created during the copy or import process.
  • Exception Report: Select a category to view and address content exceptions that need your attention.
Convert course content to fully explore your Blackboard Original course in the Ultra Preview before you decide make the switch.
Ultra Course Preview: Preview courses that aren't currently available to students.

The preview is just that—a preview, you don't have to make a permanent change to your course.

  • If you aren't ready to make the switch, you can return to the Original Course View.
  • If you approve of the Ultra Course View, you can permanently convert your course.
Any changes you made to your course in the preview mode are lost if you switch back to the Original Course View. Use the preview to explore rather than build.
Conversion Exceptions: Understand how your course will change and the potential impact.
  • Low Priority exceptions include course appearance changes, formatting changes, or slight feature limitations.
  • Medium Priority exceptions include feature behavior changes and formatting or submission removal.
  • High Priority exceptions include unsupported features and grade data removal.
Content that will convert: Identify content types supported with conversion (under continuous improvement).
  • Content items are converted to Ultra documents—some loss of formatting to text and files that you added in the editor may occur.
  • Folders limited to two sub-levels.
  • File attachments are grouped together in alphabetical order at the end of the content.
  • Assignments, including group assignments, are converted to Ultra assignments (attempt data, submissions, and grades removed during conversion).
    • Note: Assignments with maximum points that contain decimal places, the points possible value is truncated and rounded down to the nearest whole number.
  • Assignments with SafeAssign enabled.
  • Calendar due dates are converted.
  • Tests are converted with Calculated Formula, Essay, Fill in the Blank, Fill in Multiple Blanks, Matching, Multiple Choice, Multiple Answer, and True/False question types.
    • Unsupported question types and test options are removed.
    • Attempt data and submissions are removed during conversion.
    • Maximum points or question point values that contain a decimal are truncated and rounded down to the nearest whole number.
  • Original questions pools are converted to Ultra question banks and appear on the Reuse Questions page.
    • Existing tags added to questions in the Original Course View appear on the Reuse Questions page.
  • Original question sets and random blocks are converted to Ultra question banks (see: Question Banks for the latest updates) .
  • Percentage-range and percentage rubrics are converted without descriptions.
    • All other rubric types are converted to percentage rubrics, such as points and point range.
    • All Original rubric settings are now set to the Ultra rubric defaults, such as display to students.
  • Discussions are flattened to four levels of threading—ability to view replies to replies—with some settings removed.
    • An Original graded forum that doesn't allow members to create new threads keeps the current behavior described above.
    • An Original graded forum that allows members to create new threads is converted to a graded discussion in Ultra and all of its seed child threads and replies are deleted.
    • Note: Group discussion boards, forums, and threads aren't converted.
  • Course announcements are converted with limitations:
    • Rich text announcements are converted to plain text.
    • Some embedded images may appear.
    • No attachments and date restrictions included.
    • Course links may appear but won't take users to the content items.
  • Gradebooks are converted with some limitations
  • Lesson plan content is organized into two sub-levels of folders
  • Mashup links to the original content appear, if possible.
  • Web links are converted.
  • Course links to assignments and discussions only with limitations
  • Goal alignments are converted for supported items in the Ultra Course View and made visible to students.
  • SCORM package attempt data is converted to Ultra, but the data is lost if you go back to the Original Course View.
  • Learning modules content organized into two sub-levels of folders.
  • Journals: Original Course View journals, prompts, and settings are included in course archives and exports and are converted in the Ultra Course View. Only journals from content areas in Original courses appear in Ultra courses on the Course Content page. At this time, comments and student entries aren’t included when you restore an archive.
Content that will not convert: Identify items that may be removed from your Ultra Course View conversion (under continuous improvement).
  • Course messages
  • Course links to tools and content other than Assignments and Discussions:
    • Blank Page content type (ADDED?)
    • Syllabus content type
    • Textbook content type
    • Module pages
    • Lesson plans
    • Surveys
    • Tasks tool
    • Wikis and blogs
  • Groups not part of a group set don't appear on the Course Groups page
    • Self-enroll signup sheets
    • Group discussion boards, forums, and threads
  • Self and Peer Assessments
  • Delegated grading settings
  • Unsupported test options and question types
  • Achievements
  • Guest access
Understanding the conversion process: View a video of the Ultra Course Preview.
  • Experience the new Learn: Select the icon in the top-right corner of the page. In the pop-up window, start the conversion to the Ultra Course View.
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    2. You'll receive an email notification when your course is ready. Access your course and check out how your content looks in the Ultra Course View.
  • Course Exceptions: Select the View Details link in the banner or the Course Exceptions link in the Details & Information area to view how many items won't carry forward in the Ultra Course View.
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  • Conversion Details: Select a priority group to view the details so you can make the best decision for your course.
    • After you preview the Ultra Course View, you can either permanently convert the course to Ultra or stay with the Original version. Select the course view you want in the bar at the bottom of your screen.
  • Back to Original course: Your course reverts to the way it was before the preview. Remember, any changes you made to your course during the Ultra preview are lost if you go back to the Original Course View.
  • Use the Ultra course: After you make the conversion permanent, you can open the course to students when you're ready.
Blackboard Ultra Course View is in a limited pilot for Fall 2023.
Blackboard Original/Ultra Comparison