The new Authentication Framework allows simplified integration of custom authentication, which removes the need to deploy custom jar files and manually edit Blackboard Learn configuration files between upgrades.

You develop Custom Authentication Providers using the Building Blocks framework. To learn more about developing Authentication Provider Building Blocks, see Building Blocks API and Web Services Specifications and Changes and view or download the API for the release you are running. Once created, you deploy authentication provider types the same way you deploy any other Building Block.

More on installing and managing building blocks

The Blackboard Developer Community may also create and release open source Authentication Provider Building Blocks for use in Blackboard Learn. To learn more about the open source community, see

Authentication Providers can be based on two possible Authentication Mode types:

  • REDIRECT type providers, such as CAS and Shibboleth, hand off authentication to the remote authentication source and are designed for SSO (SingleSignOn) type scenarios or scenarios where logging in using these sources is presented as an option on the login page.
  • USER_PASS type providers, such as Learn Default and LDAP, query the authentication source which allows for provider chaining and authentication failback. To learn more, see Provider Order.

Blackboard recommends rewriting any existing custom authentication modules to use the new Building Block authentication framework. If this is not possible, you may continue to use the Legacy Authentication Provider Framework to manage authentication.