Supported Course Content in the Blackboard App

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    Will my course content display in the Blackboard app?

    Find out if your Blackboard Learn course content is supported in the Blackboard app for students. You can create your content with mobile in mind so that students have the best mobile experience.

    This information also applies to course content support in the Blackboard Instructor app. Most features listed are included in Blackboard Instructor, except for push notifications and main menu features such as due dates, grades, and activity stream.

    Content types

    Content types that are natively supported show within the Blackboard app instead of launching in a web page. Natively supported features provide students the best experience in the Blackboard app.

    Content types that aren't natively supported will launch in Blackboard's in-app browser rather than in the device's browser. This makes navigating backward in the app easier for students. For example, a test that isn't mobile compatible opens in a browser view within the app rather than in a separate ChromeTM or Safari® app.

    Supported Content Types in Blackboard apps
    Content Type Support
    Item Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed. File attachments in items are supported, but the types supported depend on the device operating system.
    Files Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed. File types supported depend on the device operating system.
    Audio Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed. File types supported depend on the device operating system.
    Image Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed. File types supported depend on the device operating system.
    Video Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed. File types supported depend on the device operating system.
    Content Folder Native support. Descriptions aren't displayed.
    Module Page No native support. Module pages launch in a web page.
    Blank Page No native support. Blank pages launch in a web page.
    Tests Native support. Tests that contain question types or settings that aren't mobile compatible launch in a web page, but this isn't an officially supported method for submission. For tests that launch in a web page, we recommended that you access your course on a traditional web browser.

    Blackboard app compatible tests

    Surveys No native support. Surveys launch in a web page, but this isn't an officially supported method for submission. For surveys that launch in a web page, we recommended that you access your course on a traditional web browser.
    Assignments Native support.

    Assignments in Blackboard app

    Discussions Native support.

    Discussions in Blackboard app

    Calendar Partial support. Blackboard app doesn't have a calendar page, but students can access Due Dates and the Activity Stream in the base navigation to see information aggregated across all of their courses.

    Due Dates in Blackboard app

    Blogs

    Wikis

    Journals
    No native support. These tools launch in a web page.
    Push Notifications Native support.

    Push notifications in Blackboard app

    Announcements Native support.

    Announcements in Blackboard app

    Course Links Native support. Content types that are supported natively will also launch natively when accessed from a course link.
    Web Links Native support. The functionality of the target website may be impacted by the device operating system and limitations of the in-app browser.
    Learning Modules Partial support. Learning modules have partial functionality in the Blackboard app. Users can't see the module table of contents like they can in a web browser. Contents are listed similarly to a content folder.
    Lesson Plans Native support. Contents are listed similarly to a content folder.
    Syllabus No native support. The syllabus content type launches in a web page.
    SCORM No native support. Content may launch in a web page, but this isn't a supported method for completing SCORM content.
    LTI Tools Partial support. The link launches in the in-app browser and there is infrastructure in place to maintain the user's session in the launch. However, the in-app browser might not support all required technologies to handle the content as expected.

    We don't guarantee that third-party tools, including building blocks or Blackboard Learn customizations, will function as desired in the Blackboard app.

    Grades Native support.

    Grades in Blackboard app

    Partner Cloud Tools No native support. Partner cloud integration tools launch in the in-app browser. Functionality may be limited by the technical requirements of the third-party content and the device operating system.
    Course Tools Page No native support. The course tools page contains links to each available tool type in a course. Course menu links to the course tools page don't appear in the app. Any course link navigation the course tools page will launch in the in-app browser.
    Localization Native support.

    Localization in Blackboard app

    Course Messages No native support. Course messages don't display in the app or app notifications.

    Content editor features

    The Blackboard app supports various HTML and CSS features from the Blackboard Learn content editor across iOS, Android, and Windows platforms.

    Detailed list of HTML tags and supported app locations

    To be absolutely sure your formatting doesn't change when viewed in the Blackboard app, use an attachment such as PPT, DOC, or PDF.

    Formatting in assessment instructions

    At this time, we recommend that instructors and course builders use plain text in test and assignment instructions to ensure the best display for students in the Blackboard app. Some formatting that is supported for other types of content doesn't show to students in assessment instructions.


    Adaptive release and review status

    The Blackboard app doesn't support the Mark Reviewed feature at this time. Students need to access a course in a web browser to use this feature if you made it available for a content item.

    The Blackboard app supports Adaptive Release of content, where instructors can release content only to students who meet certain criteria. The criteria are date, grade, or student membership in a group or list created by the instructor.

    More on releasing content to students


    Embedded media and mashups

    Flickr®, Slideshare, YouTube™ and other mashup tools work best when added as an embedded mashup within the content editor.

    1. From the Build Content menu, select Item. Don't select from the Mashups section of the menu.
    2. Use the Mashups feature in the content editor.

    These media aren't supported:

    • Kaltura media isn't supported at this time.
    • Media files embedded within attached files don't work. For example, an MP4 attachment works, an HTML attachment works, but embedding the mp4 reference within an HTML file attachment doesn't work.
    • Other third-party video services produce inconsistent results depending on formatting.
    • File packages that use index.html with an asset file bundle aren't supported.

    Tests

    Tests are natively supported in the Blackboard app. A test must contain only mobile compatible question types in order to open natively in the Blackboard app. Tests that aren't mobile compatible open in a browser instead of within the app. Tests that aren't natively supported in the app should be completed in a web browser.

    Question types

    The Blackboard app supports these mobile compatible test question types:

    • True/False
    • Multiple Choice
    • Short Answer
    • Essay
    • Either/Or

    Additional question types are available in the edit canvas of a mobile compatible test, but only the types listed here are supported natively in the Blackboard app. Including other question types will cause the test to launch in the in-app browser, which isn't the recommended method for completing the test. Tests that aren't natively supported in the app should be completed in a web browser.

    More on browser support

    Settings

    These test settings are mobile compatible and are respected by the Blackboard app:

    • Randomized Questions
    • Timed Assessment with Auto-Submit = ON

    These test settings are NOT mobile compatible. The test will still launch natively, but these settings aren't fully enforced by the Blackboard app:

    • One at a Time*
    • Prohibit Backtracking*
    • Feedback by the grader for individual questions
    • Timed Assessment with Auto-Submit = OFF**

    *Questions are always delivered all-at-once by the app at this time.

    **The timer setting always enforces Auto-Submit in the app at this time.

    Display

    • Test descriptions are not displayed, but instructions are displayed.
    • Some formatting doesn't show to students in test instructions. At this time, we recommend that instructors and course builders use plain text in test instructions to ensure the best display for students.
    • Images in test questions are not displayed.

    Other test options

    • Question Sets and Random Blocks: These are supported natively in the Blackboard app so long as all of the questions in the pool are natively supported by the app. One unsupported question type in the pool will cause all attempts to launch in the in-app browser even if that unsupported question isn't delivered for every attempt.
    • IP Filtering: Traffic from the Blackboard app will appear to originate from the mBaaS cloud IP addresses. To learn more, see Firewall Whitelisting to Allow Mobile Traffic. The presence of this setting doesn't technically make the test not mobile compatible, but launching the assessment will fail unless mBaaS IP addresses are included in the ALLOW rules.

    Assignments

    Assignments are supported natively in the Blackboard app.

    Display

    • The assignment instructions you type in an Original course show in the app's assignment DETAILS page under the Description heading.
    • Some formatting doesn't show to students in assignment instructions. At this time, we recommend that instructors and course builders use plain text in assignment instructions to ensure the best display for students.

    File attachments are supported. File types supported depend on the device operating system. There is a file size limit of 250 MB for submissions to assignments.

    Integration with cloud storage allows students to upload files from their cloud storage accounts for assignments.

    More on cloud file storage in the app


    Discussions

    Discussions are natively supported in the Blackboard app. Actions that are supported in the Blackboard app include the following.

    • Forum description
    • Max possible grade and rubric for a forum
    • View and create threads *
    • Reply to threads *
    • Reply to replies *
    • View instructor feedback and grades for forums
    • View file attachments to posts; file support depends on device operating system
    • Edit post; if enabled by instructor in the forum
    • Delete post; if enabled by instructor in the forum
    • Unread count

    *includes anonymous posts

    Discussion actions that are not supported in the Blackboard app at this time include the following.

    • Add attachment
    • Edit thread
    • Delete thread
    • Mark as read for thread, post, reply
    • Unread count (Windows devices only)
    • Add tags or flag
    • Updates appear on activity stream
    • Discussion due dates appear in due dates
    • Subscribe to a thread

    Push notifications

    Push notifications pop up on student's devices for the following events.

    • upcoming tests
    • past due tests
    • new grades
    • new course available

    Push notifications aren't available for assignments at this time. Assignments do show in the app's Activity Stream and in Due Dates if you set a due date.

    Students can change their notifications by logging in to their Blackboard web account on a computer.

    If you have students who previously used the older Mobile Learn app, they might be used to push notifications for new announcements, courses, and content. These push notifications are not available in the Blackboard app, but these events are indicated in the app in alternative ways.

    • Announcements show in the activity stream.
    • New courses show in the Courses list when they are made available.
    • New content is shown in the activity stream and marked New within the course.

    Announcements

    Course announcements from instructors are available on the app and within individual courses.

    Students may see alerts from the school within courses on the app if the sender selected an option to show the announcement in courses and organizations.

    All course announcements and system announcements are aggregated in the Blackboard app's Stream. System announcements are labeled as Alerts.

    In the activity stream, when a student dismisses a course announcement it's no longer accessible on the app on any device. When a student dismisses a system announcement, it's no longer accessible on the app on the specific device where the student dismissed the system announcement.

    Announcements support plain text only on the app's activity stream and within courses. Rich text isn't supported.

    Announcements are an Original Course View feature. Announcements aren't available on the app or a web browser for the Ultra Course View.


    Due dates

    The Due Dates page in Blackboard's base navigation is unique to the app. It aggregates due dates from tests and assignments across all of a student's courses.

    Content items with due dates that appear in on the Due Dates page:

    • Tests
    • Assignments

    Content items with due dates that do not appear in on the Due Dates page:

    • Discussion Forums
    • Blogs/Journals/Wikis
    • SCORM
    • LTI tools (3rd party)
    • Surveys

    The Due Dates feature pulls information from Blackboard Learn's calendar tool, so your school must have the Calendar building block installed.


    Grades

    Grades are natively supported in the Blackboard app. Students can view overall course grades and individual item grades with instructor feedback.

    Hidden grade columns are supported. Grade Center columns that are hidden from students do not display to students in a web browser or in the Blackboard app.

    The following grade information is not available in the Blackboard app at this time.

    • Files attached to feedback
    • Inline grading comments (Crocodoc)

    *Statements regarding our product development initiatives, including new products and future product upgrades, updates or enhancements represent our current intentions, but may be modified, delayed or abandoned without prior notice and there is no assurance that such offering, upgrades, updates or functionality will become available unless and until they have been made generally available to our customers.