Digital Education Developments 2018

Important dates over the summer

  • Re/Play upgrade - 9 am to 1 pm on Monday 16 July 
    Re/Play will be unavailable during this time
  • Blackboard upgrade - 7 pm on Sunday 22 July to midday on Monday 23 July 
    Blackboard will be unavailable during this time
  • Blackboard course rollover - 2 August to 8 August 
    Backboard courses for 2018-19 units and programmes will become available to staff over this period 
  • Blackboard upgrade to improve Box View for inline marking
    Blackboard are expected to release an additional upgrade in August to allow students and staff to download feedback annotations added in Box View. Details to follow when confirmed by Blackboard. 

Re/Play upgrade and new features 

On 16 July between 9 am and 1 pm the Digital Education Office (DEO), in partnership with IT Services and Sonic Foundry, will be upgrading to a new version of Re/Play. This process will take around four hours and the service will be unavailable throughout (for both playback and scheduling).

Once back online, the DEO and IT Services will be undertaking testing and the service will remain at risk during this time. 

By upgrading to the new version, we will benefit from new and improved features, including:

We will also be looking to evaluate the following -

We are continuing to extend the Re/Play service though our Re/Play extension project.

Blackboard upgrade and new features

This year, the Blackboard upgrade has been scheduled to take place between 7 pm on Sunday 22 July and midday on Monday 23 July. Blackboard will be unavailable during this time, so please do not schedule any activities requiring Blackboard during that period. 

The upgrade will fix some bugs and make improvements, including: 

Blackboard Collaborate

Collaborate is a browser-based, teaching-focused web conferencing solution that makes it easy to teach and learn at a distance. The tool was introduced last year, and we have supported staff with several successful pilots. From your Blackboard course it is easy to run a Collaborate class with a cohort or group, meet online with individual students, or make Collaborate available for students to use independently. With planning, it can scale to hundreds of users. 

Uses of Collaborate include online classes and tutorials, one-to-one meetings, peer-to-peer teaching, drop-in sessions, online office hours, independent or facilitated group work, virtual open days and guest lecturer presentations/teaching. 

Pedagogoically useful features include shared whiteboards with annotation, screen sharing, a chat facility, break-out discussion, polling (voting), recording sessions for revision/review, and accessibilty features to support disabled students. 

Screenshot of Blackboard Collaborate

Blackboard course rollover

New Blackboard courses for 2018-19 units and programmes will become available to staff between 2 and 8 August. 

Contact us

If you would like to work with us to support you in the use of any of the above tools, or to evaluate new features of Re/Play such as the quiz tool and software solution for recording small classes or labs, please contact us