Release Notes for Learn SaaS

This page contains features and updates currently on Learn SaaS Test/Stage and Production environments. Visit Archived SaaS Release Notes to see features and updates in older versions. Visit In-Product Updates to learn more about in-product updates.

Filter the list of features to learn more.

More on Learn with the SaaS Deployment | Export the list of Known Issues | Access the latest API and database documentation | Blackboard Learn SaaS release notes archive | Learn Releases White Paper

Looking for Blackboard Learn 9.1 release notes?

Follow this page to get email updates when we publish new release notes

View the SaaS release schedule


Learn SaaS release 3900.98.0

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.98.0
Release to Test/Stage: Tuesday, 16 July 2024 | Release to Production: Thursday, 8 August 2024
Original Experience, Ultra Experience
Original Course View, Ultra Course View

For full feature details, please review the corresponding notes for the Learn 3900.98.0 version included below on this page. Details can be found Behind the Blackboard

Latest release: 3900.98.0-rel.7+8cb52c6 to Test/Stage servers to take place on 16 July 2024.

For more information on updates and bug fixes, please visit Behind the Blackboard.


August 2024 – 3900.98 Release

The August 2024 - 3900.98 release is robust with features in 8 areas: 

  • Instructional design; 
  • Mastery learning & learning pathways;
  • Tests and assignments; 
  • Communication and collaboration; 
  • Flexible grading; 
  • Gradebook; 
  • Learn core and security; 
  • Integrations; and 
  • Upgrade to Ultra 

These improvements impact instructors, students, and administrators. Some features do require administrative action. 

Instructors: 

Instructors and Students: 

Instructors and Administrators: 

Administrators

All users: 


Extension of Support for Converting Building Block Content to LTI Tool – 3900.98

Blackboard Learn SaaS, Blackboard Learn 9.1
Original Experience
Original Course View
Impact: Administrators
Related topic: Convert Building Blocks to LTI

We are extending support for the Converting Building Block Content to LTI Tool until the end of July 2024. This extension aims to ensure a seamless transition for all users leveraging these services for media content within our platform. The tool can be used after July 2024 but is no longer updated with enhancements.

In our upcoming August release, we will comprehensively add all enhancements necessary to the conversion tool to support migration efforts. While these tools cover most use cases, it's important to note that after this release, any remaining links that do not automatically convert may require manual re-creation.

If you encounter issues with link conversion after July 2024, we recommend contacting your respective vendors directly. They may provide alternative methods or assistance for recreating these links.

Please note that this extension specifically applies to the Converting Building Block Content to LTI Tool, which currently supports Kaltura, Panopto, MediaSite, Echo360, and ShareStream. It will not impact the current extensions provided for each building block independently.

We are committed to supporting you throughout this transition period. If you have any questions or need further assistance, contact our support team.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Brightspace Conversion Improvement: Gradebook Categories – 3900.98

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

The Brightspace conversion process now supports the preservation of grade categories. This enhancement allows instructors to associate grade-related items with preserved categories after conversion which will simplify setting up their gradebooks. Instructors can set weights using these categories, ensuring an organized grading structure.

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Brightspace Conversion Improvement: Discussion Forums and Topics – 3900.98 

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

Discussion Forums and Topics in Brightspace are now preserved during the conversion process. Discussion Forums convert to Folders and Discussion Topics convert to Discussions. 

The following Discussion Forum and Topic settings are also preserved: 

  • Visibility 
  • Due Dates 
  • Release Conditions 
  • Points 
  • Post First 

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed. 

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Brightspace Conversion Improvement: Embedded Equations – 3900.98 

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

We’ve resolved a rendering bug related to embedded math equations. Math equations converted from Brightspace would render but break when edited. This issue is now fixed. Equations converted from Brightspace to Learn can be edited without breaking. This ensures a more reliable and efficient transition for courses with mathematical content. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Brightspace Conversion Improvement: File Uploads – 3900.98

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

We resolved an intermittent issue where file uploads failed during conversion. All uploaded files now convert in a proper state so that users can view and download them. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Brightspace Conversion Improvement: Quiz Timer Settings – 3900.98 

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

We have improved the way Quiz Timer Settings are converted from Brightspace to Learn. In the past, timed quizzes were kept open after the timer has lapsed, despite the original configuration in Brightspace. With this update, we preserve the settings from Brightspace. Quizzes with timers will either continue to be open or auto submit once the timer ends. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Moodle Conversion Improvement: Embedded Images– 3900.98

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Original Experience and Ultra Experience 
Original Course View and Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from Moodle

We have an important update to our Moodle conversion process. We fixed an issue related to embedded images. Converted Images wouldn't display for students. The issue is now fixed for the following items: 

  • Assignments 
  • Books
  • Choice 
  • Feedback 
  • Files 
  • Forums 
  • Glossaries 
  • Lessons 
  • Pages 
  • Questionnaire Descriptions 
  • Quiz Descriptions 
  • Text and Media Areas 
  • URLs 
  • Wikis 
  • SCORM 

For administrators: This feature is available for all courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to August 2024 – 3900.98.0 Release description


Learn SaaS release 3900.95.0

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.95.0
Release to Test/Stage: Tuesday, 11 June 2024 | Release to Production: Thursday, 11 July 2024
Original Experience, Ultra Experience
Original Course View, Ultra Course View

For full feature details, please review the corresponding notes for the Learn 3900.95.0 version included below on this page. Details can be found Behind the Blackboard

Latest release: 3900.95.0-rel.84+1c08114 to Production servers to take place on 18 July 2024.

For more information on updates and bug fixes, please visit Behind the Blackboard.


Communication & Collaboration 

Send a copy to email when scheduling announcements – 3900.95

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Ultra Experience 
Ultra Course View 
Impact: Instructors 
Related Topic: Announcements

Managing communication with students is an important instructor task. Instructors often plan certain communications in advance. Now instructors can schedule an announcement for a future date and select that it will send an email copy. The announcement tool will send the email copy on the day and time the announcements are posted. 

In the past, instructors could schedule an announcement that would present to students on the selected day and time. Instructors could also immediately post an announcement and send an email copy to students at the same time. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all Ultra courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to July 2024 – 3900.95.0 Release description


Learner Progression & Personalized Experience 

Test and Discussion events included in the Activity Accumulator and synthetic events clean-up – 3900.95

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Ultra Experience and Original Experience 
Ultra Course View and Original Course View
Impact: Administrators 

Administrators and faculty need to review user activity. This user activity helps inform decisions in academic disputes and aids in troubleshooting. 

Administrators can now view more granular events for what students did on assessments and discussions in the “activity_accumulator” table. 

New events are saved in the “event_type” column.

Event nameRule
ASSESSMENT_SUBMITA student submits a test or an assignment
ASSESSMENT_DRAFTA student saves a draft on a test or an assignment
DISCUSSION_RESPONSEA student posts a response on a discussion
DISCUSSION_REPLYA student posts a reply on a discussion
DISCUSSION_DRAFTA student saves a draft in a reply or response to a discussion
DISCUSSION_EDITA student edits a reply or response to a discussion

Note: The “activity_accumulator” includes only submissions the student makes. Auto submissions made by the system are not yet included. 

Image 1: Query results of user interactions in a course including discussion and assessment events in the “activity_accumulator” table

Output of Activity Accumulator with test and discussion activities highlighted

We also cleaned up the “activity_accumulator” table to prevent the generation of synthetic and duplicate events. This makes student activity review simpler and more transparent.

  • Indirect user interactions may generate synthetic events. For example, a student might access a page where content was displayed without accessing content itself might generate a synthetic event. These synthetic events could lead to confusion, making it difficult to differentiate real user interactions and clutter databases. Now, no synthetic events are generated. 
  • Duplicated events were generated with a single user interaction. This could give the impression a user was more active than they were. Now, each user interaction registers a single event. 
  • When opening a folder, learning module, or other container, “CONTENT_ACCESS” events were registered for all items inside the container. Now, only the access for the container is registered. 

Behaviors you can expect on existing events: 

  • “COURSE_ACCESS” events are generated only when a user accesses the course. 
  • “CONTENT_ACCESS” events are generated only when a user accesses that course content. This applies for all course content items: documents, assessments, discussions, journals, LTI activities, SCORM packages, etc. 

As before, the “activity_accumulator” table can receive requests from Course Content public APIs. If you’re using the following API endpoints, take into account these new events and cleanup:

  • GET /learn/api/public/v1/courses/{courseld}/contents 
  • GET /learn/api/public/v1/courses/{courseld}/contents/{contentld} 
  • GET /learn/api/public/v1/courses/{courseld}/contents/{contentld}/children 

Key considerations: 

  • These changes apply to new events. Historic events will remain the same. 
  • The activity_accumulator table registers events of all users no matter the role. These changes apply to students and any other role that made these interactions. 
  • User actions made in mobile app are also included in the “activity_accumulator” table. 

For administrators: To track user interactions in the Activity Accumulator table this feature needs to be activated. Go to Tools and Utilities in the administrator panel. Select System Reporting, then Auto-Reporting options. Select Yes in the event tracking field. The default state is on.

Return to July 2024 – 3900.95.0 Release description


‘Reply to Email’ feature for Messages – 3900.95

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Ultra Experience 
Impact: Administrators
Related Topic: Messages

We aim to support institutions' specific policies and procedures about email communications. To help, administrators can now control how users interact with Messages sent as emails. When allowed, users can reply to Messages sent as an email. 

There are two new settings for Ultra Messages: 

  • Allow email replies to messages from non-students/non-participants (instructors/leaders, administrators) 
  • Allow email replies to messages from students/participants 

When drafting the message, instructors may choose whether they want to allow replies. When selected, replies from students will be directed to the instructor's email address registered in the system. Allowing replies helps interactions to be more efficient and will foster smoother communication. 

Image 1. Messages for Organizations and Courses configuration from Administrator Tool Panel

Ultra message settings in the admin panel

For administrators: By default, both settings are deselected. This setting can be selected for students, non-students, or both.

Return to July 2024 – 3900.95.0 Release description


Upgade to Ultra 

Brightspace Conversion Improvement: Embedded Images and Multimedia – 3900.95 

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Ultra Experience and Original Experience 
Ultra Course View and Original Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators 
Related Topic: Migrate from D2L Brightspace

We have improved the way we convert HTML Documents from Brightspace to Ultra. Now, embedded images and multimedia are preserved for HTML Documents. HTML Documents from Brightspace convert into Content Items or Ultra Documents, depending on the course view. We now preserve embedded images and multimedia for either output. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all Ultra courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to July 2024 – 3900.95.0 Release description


Moodle Conversion Improvement: Graded Discussions – 3900.95 

Blackboard Learn SaaS 
Ultra Experience and Original Experience 
Ultra Course View and Original Course View 
Impact: Instructors and Administrators
Related Topic: Migrate from Moodle 

We have improved the way that we convert Discussions from Moodle to Ultra. Now, graded discussions and their settings convert. We now bring over the points and grade category for the discussion. This change simplifies the process for those migrating from Moodle. Instructors will no longer need to update converted discussions to be graded. 

For administrators: This feature is available for all Ultra courses. There are no configurations needed.

Return to July 2024 – 3900.95.0 Release description



Looking for older release notes?

Check out the Blackboard Learn Release Notes Archive for more information on past releases.

Return to top