Start Here With The Basics!

On this page

    New to Collaborate or need a refresher?

    Blackboard Collaborate™ is a simple, convenient, and reliable web conferencing solution built for education and training. Engage with the material and your students. Thanks to robust collaboration and conference tools, everyone feels like they're in the same room together, regardless of their location or device.

    Watch a video about Blackboard Collaborate

    The following narrated video provides a visual representation of some of the information included on this page. For a detailed description of what is portrayed in the video, open the video on YouTube, navigate to More actions, and select Open transcript.

    Video: Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience user interface tour shows you Blackboard Collaborate with the Ultra experience in action.

    Use Google Chrome or Firefox for the best experience

    While Collaborate supports all browsers, ChromeTM or Firefox® gives you the best experience.

    For the best Blackboard Collaborate experience with your screen reader use Firefox® and Jaws on a Windows® system. On a Mac® use Safari® and VoiceOver.

    More on browser support

    More on accessibility in Collaborate

    Find your way around sessions

    Imagine walking into a room that was perfectly outfitted for collaboration. The amount of tools to engage and capture are potentially endless. Like any good classroom or studio space, we must be organized.

    We've organized everything into three convenient areas: a media space, the Session menu, and a Collaborate panel.

    Get to know your way around Collaborate

    More on the tools and icons in Collaborate

    Use our accessible in-product tutorials to get up and running saving precious session time. From the Session menu, select Tell me about Collaborate and choose the features they want to walk through.

    Add a profile picture

    Having a social presence can be critical to a successful online learning experience. Something simple as adding a profile image can make learners more comfortable with participating online.

    1. Open My Settings. Select your profile picture and select your name. Or open the Collaborate panel and select My Settings.
    2. Point to the profile picture and select it.
    3. Upload any image or use your device camera to take a photo. You can choose to use this profile picture for every session.
    4. Adjust the image area.
    5. Select I Like it!

    Get set up to use your audio and video

    You must complete audio and video set up at least once before you can use them.

    Don't want to set it up right away? No problem. You can complete the set up at any time.

    After you are set up, select the microphone and video camera icons any time during a meeting to turn them on or off.

    With your keyboard, press Alt + M to turn your microphone on and off. Press Alt + C to turn your camera on and off.

    More on using your audio and video

    Use your phone

    If enabled, you can use the telephony feature to communicate with other users. 

    Mobile device users cannot use teleconference for audio communications in a session at this time.

    More on connecting to a session with your phone

    Change your status

    Change your status to away or let others know how you feel about something said or shared in the session.

    From the main stage, select your profile picture.

    Feedbacks appear with an attendee's profile picture on the main stage, in the Attendees panel, and in Chat. After 30 seconds the feedback disappears.

    The Away status stays until you return and select I'm back!

    A summary of the feedback selected appears under the panel heading. It shows the current feedback with a count of attendees using it.

    You can sort the attendees by feedback in the Attendees panel. For example, if you want to know who is happy about what was said, select Happy under the Attendees heading. Only those who are happy appear.

    You're ready

    Now that you're set up and familiar with Collaborate, you're ready to start using it.

    Use Collaborate in your courses to engage your students in a virtual classroom. Start scheduling sessions, sharing content, and collaborating with your students.

    More on scheduling sessions

    More on sharing content

    More on collaborating with your students