We're continually striving to improve the Community Engagement solution!

See the latest changes for Blackboard Mobile Communications App, Blackboard Mass Notifications, Teacher Communications, and Blackboard Social Media Manager.

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Blackboard Communications HQ Mobile App 5.5.0

Continuous Delivery 5.5.0 | Release to Production 18 February 2019
Bb Comms, New features, Updated features, Bug fixes

New or updated for iOS

  • Added the ability to mark all unread notification messages as read.
  • Added support for iPhone X.
  • iOS 10 is the minimum version.
  • Added 167x167 icons for iPad Pro support.

Bug fixes for iOS

We resolved the following issues in the 5.5.0 release:

  • Navigation bar became unreadable when sending an email.
  • Top Stories header wasn't translating to other languages.
  • Facebook and Google text overlapping.
  • UI enhancements to the Students account profile when logged in via Facebook.
  • Logos appearing stretched on splash screens.
  • Image attachments weren't displaying with the message body.

New or updated for Android

  • Added the ability to mark all unread notification messages as read.
  • Implemented a new GPS utility to assist with locating Tip line, Bus routes, and School finder.
  • Migrated GCM to most recent version of FCM to continue to support push notifications.

Bug fixes for Android

We resolved the following issues in the 5.5.0 release:

  • Feed entries inserted around daylight savings would crash the app.
  • Google sign-in wasn't working
  • Opening the Tip line caused the app to crash.
  • Text in Top Stories was cut off at the bottom on small screen resolutions.
  • Images in Top Stories weren't displaying correctly.
  • Google API caused the app to occasionally error.
  • Images weren't opening on the activity screen.
  • Logos appearing stretched on splash screens.

Blackboard Communications HQ Mobile App 5.5

Continuous Delivery 5.5 | Release to Production 31 July 2018
Bb Comms, New features, Updated features

We are excited to announce the release of a new version (5.5) of our Blackboard Communications HQ app.

Now available to teachers! 

Districts with our Blackboard Teacher Communications product can now offer a mobile version of our SEND MESSAGE interface to their teachers.

  • User Management for Teachers
    • Teacher selected individuals will now be populated in the recipient’s section for email, phone and SMS
    • Teacher ability to edit the list of recipients that I have previously selected
    • Added search functionality for Teachers to search through recipients
    • Added a visual indication of the “who” teachers are sending the message to (groups, students, parents, classes)
    • Added a visual indicator to indicate which role type a Teacher is sending a message to
    • Added the ability for teachers to select groups/individuals           
  • Composing Messages for Teachers
    • Added subject and body of my email communication 
    • Ability to attach photos to my email communications
    • Ability to record audio messages
    • Added text-to-speech
    • Added the ability to save a copy of a message on the HQ app to the miscellaneous folder for future use
    • Recipients added to a message are now saved along with the draft of message
  • Message Editing for Teachers
    • Ability to be able to delete text to speech recordings
    • Ability to listen to the text to speech message
    • Ability to edit Delivery Address
  • Message Sending for Teachers
    • Ability to Send to the users selected when pressing the send button
    • Ability to send Text Message communications
    • Added the ability to configure the send time of a message        
  • App Options/Configuration for Teachers
    • Added the ability to configure the language of message notifications to the users preferred language
    • Updated app to make sure that the delivery methods set per school are respected on the App, so teachers can only send approved messaging types
  • App UI improvements
    • General UI improvements to the app 

Bug fixes

  • Improved search functionality in Recipients 
  • Fixed an issue where the app would sometimes crash when selecting and deselecting recipients
  • Fixed an issue where sent messages not saved in Saved messages when sent on Android device
  • Fixed an issue where Groups for Teacher Send should display organization name for teachers that tie to multiple organizations
  • Fixed an issue where the ‘Recipients’ section search, under Classes, the ‘All Classes’ sub-heading is not displaying the total number of classes
  • Fixed an issue where Class selections become hidden when submenu is accessed and back is tapped

Community Engagement 10.3.0

Continuous Delivery 10.3.0 | Release to Production 15 December 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • Added the ability to export more than 20k rows at a time for Blackboard reports
    • Added ability to trigger messages for late/missing files and small/missing automated messages
    • Removed the ability for users to change the role type of another user when that role was originally created by an import
    • Added Student ID as an available merge tag when creating messages
    • Removed the ability to add, edit, or remove imported Terms from the web interface
    • Removed confusing interface language about Connect 5 email and SMS deliveries
  • Mobile Communications App (MCA)
    • Improved performance to App Building tools
    • Fixed issue with Push Notifications including an image
  • Teacher Communications
    • Added icons to teacher saved messages that show which are system, admin created or user created
      • System Created – Can't be edited, copied, or deleted
      • Admin Created – Can be copied only
      • User Created – Can be edited, copied, and deleted
    • Removed the carbon copy (CC) option for teachers, still available for admins
    • Updated URL's for help options seen by teachers
    • Improved performance to the Teacher Messages report
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • Added Alt-text requirement for all inserted images when creating messages
    • Added the ability to see schools inside a boundary when selecting recipients from a map
    • Fixed an issue where organizations weren't sorted alphabetically in the advanced group creation
    • Added the ability for school administrator accounts to send On Screen Alerts directly from the messaging (COPE) interface
    • Added back student specific merge tags when the Send to parents of students option is selected
    • Fixed issue where SMS blocked addresses in a Personal File Cabinet were not displaying correctly
    • Made user improvements to the Schedule Report tool
    • Improved performance when needing to export a large Contact report
    • Improved performance to the system Auto Search tool

Scheduled reports

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 18-22 September 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

The Scheduled Reports feature has been redesigned to be separated from the scheduled tasks, and moved from the Settings menu to the Reports menu.

Watch a video about the Scheduled Reports page

Video: Scheduled Reports Page

  • From the Blackboard Communications HQ interface menu, select Reports.
  • Select Schedule Reports from the System area.
  • Select the specific School to narrow the list of report schedules available.
  • From the Scheduled Reports, you can select any of the following options:
    • Name: Select the report name to update the name or the email address of who receives the report.
    • Delete: Select the reports to remove and then select Delete to delete the report schedule.

September 1, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 1 September 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • Added the ability to see cafeteria balance, library information, bus routes, and custom uploaded data on the Student Account page.
    • Administrators can now use Google to login to the Blackboard Communications HQ web interface.
  • Teacher Communications
    • Added training video to the Teacher Communication Send Interface.
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • Now, you can setup and use several custom caller IDs for phone messages, and several reply-to-email addresses and sender names for email messages. When your district or school wants certain message replies to be sent to a specific group of staff members, you can setup and use the response phone numbers or email addresses.
    • Fixed an issue where abbreviations played differently on test call than on the live call.
  • Blackboard Communications App Release
    • Added a new SMS (text message) number for emergency messages so users don't opt-out of emergencies when they opt-out of an informational call.

August 8, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 8 August 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • Added the ability for all accounts to use SAML to login. Previously, teacher accounts were not supported but they are now.
    • Staff can now login to their account on the web interface using their Google account.
    • The Reports page has been redesigned.
    • Login report is now in the Accounts section.
    • Auto-complete recipient selection on the Send Message interface will have images or initials displayed next to accounts.
  • Teacher Communications
    • The Send Message page and the Teacher Messaging report have been updated in this release.
    • The Send Message page has been redesigned for easier use. You can send messages to any of your students, the entire class, all your classes, or just to parents.
    • The Teacher Messaging report displays how many teacher messages each student receives, the number of parents contacted, and which delivery method was used.
    • With the Teacher Communications program, administrator have a new ability to hide student contact information from teachers.
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • Fixed an issue where sometimes the wrong status would show in the Message Tracking report.
  • Blackboard Communications App Release
    • Fixed an issue where sometimes push notifications would not be delivered.

Blackboard Communications HQ Mobile App

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production June 2017
Bb Comms, New features Updated features

This release includes new enhancements for Blackboard Mobile Communications app:

  • Notifications Redesign
  • Added the ability to upload custom student data for those with the integrated mobile app.
  • Added support for SAML login.
  • Added support for Learn More and Signup Now for Peachjar Fliers.

The following issues have been resolved in the Blackboard Mobile Communication app:

  • Fixed an issue where PDF files did not display on some Android devices.
  • Fixed an issue where audio continued playing after moving to another screen.
  • Fixed an issue where when a user selected a MailTo link, it would not work on Android devices in app browsers.
  • Fixed an issue where the Activity Stream would display HTML code instead of RSS posts.

March 10, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 10 March 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • For districts that import user information, you now have the option to update the user login names and passwords through the import. This setting is available in the Authentication page.
  • Mobile Communications App
    • Fixed an issue where deleted Peachjar fliers still appeared in the Blackboard Mobile Communications App.

Blackboard Communications HQ Mobile App

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 24 February 2017
Bb Comms, New features

  • Added the ability to edit Saved Messages.
  • The app now matches the Blackboard Communications HQ web interface and not longer includes expire times for messages.
  • Added SAML support (Security Assertion Markup Language) to the app.
  • Several features that have been available to Apple devices are now also available to Android devices. These features include:
    • Ability to send On-Screen Alerts to Web Community Manager websites.
    • Improvements to message details.
    • Confirmation of app messages to be set to public when recipients have been chosen.
    • Icon for the app has been updated to standard Blackboard Mass Communications icon.

February 10, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 10 February 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • The Advanced Options feature in the Send Message interface no longer includes the Use all supported automatic translations option.
    • The name and logo of the district/school has been removed from the homepage. The name has been added to the top navigation bar.
    • To improve the performance of the System Statistics report, the Delivered and Attempted fields have been removed. The Messages field lists all the messages sent by the system.
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • Added the ability to create a voice recorded message with merge tags. The merge tags will help you to send personalized messages with only one recording.
    • Added the ability to listen to audio via a scheduled or exported Excused Absences report. The report will now include a link to the parent's recorded message (internet access is required).
    • Fixed an issue where sometimes phone numbers and email addresses were not flagged as bad data when they should have been.

January 27, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 27 January 2017
Bb Comms, Mass Notifications, MCA, New features, Social Media Manager, Teacher Comms, Updated features

  • All Products
    • Fixed an issue where late file triggers were not working.
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • An unknown status for a message will now appear as Unknown instead of Not Attempted.
  • Blackboard Mobile Communications App
    • Fixed an issue where adding Nutrislice domains on the Data Configuration page did not work.
    • Fixed an issue where bus routes would sometimes sort out of order.

January 13, 2017

Continuous Delivery | Release to Production 13 January 2017
Updated features

  • All Products
    • Added the ability to schedule messages to be sent multiple times.
    • Fixed an issue where sometimes the Headlines and Announcements in Web Community Manager would appear when they should not be there.
  • Blackboard Mass Notifications
    • Fixed an issue where on the Message Tracking and Details feature a deactivated text number was appearing as Not attempted. Now it will be listed as SMS number deactivated.