In the Ultra experience, most tools appear in these areas:

  • Tools page in the base navigation
  • Inside a course

Tools page in the base navigation

When users select any link from the list in the base navigation, they see a global view across all their courses. They can access the global calendar that captures due dates in all their courses and the grades page that shows all their grading tasks organized by course. No need to navigate to each course to see what's ready for grading.

Administrators can't disable items in the base navigation list.

Other global system tools are available on the Tools page, such as the Content Collection, Goals, Enterprise Surveys, and Portfolios. Users only see the tools they have access to.

When Learn Ultra is enabled, certain Tools are “always on” and cannot be turned off for Learn Original and Learn Ultra Courses. These Tools include:

  • Assignments
  • Calendar
  • Course Roster
  • Discussion Boards
  • Grade Center
  • Links
  • LTI Links
  • Math Editor (rich text editor)
  • Messages
  • My Grades (Student view of Grades)
  • Partner Cloud
  • Rubrics
  • Spellcheck (rich text editor)

For Messages, you have the ability to choose whether students are able to create and reply to messages in both Learn Original and Learn Ultra courses when Base Navigation is enabled. 

Learn more about Messages

Manage tools

The Ultra experience has two categories of tools:

  • These tools always appear in the base navigation. You can't turn them off, but you may be able to make some configurations.
  • Most tools are unchanged from Blackboard Learn with the Original experience. The tools appear in the Original Course View. You manage these tools in the Admin Panel > Tools and Utilities > Tools. At this time, you can read more about specific tools in the Self-Hosted deployment admin folder.
    • In the Ultra Course View, tools are always available to instructors, such as File, rubrics, gradebook, assignments, tests, documents, profile, messages, and the roster.

More on the course views

Change tool availability

Manage Tools

Blackboard Learn has a robust set of tools and the flexibility to add new tools to the platform. The Tools page lists each tool that is available. Each row shows the availability of the tool to authenticated users, guests, and observers.

Only system tools appear on the Tools page in the Ultra base navigation.

On the Administrator Panel in the Tools and Utilities section, select Tools.

  1. Open the Filter by menu and make a selection to narrow your list.
  2. The type of tool is listed, such as course or organization.
  3. In the Availability column, change to ON or OFF.

    Some tools' availability can't be changed after the Ultra Experience is enabled. Learn more about Tools availability.

  4. Lock or unlock the tool availability setting. If locked, instructors can't change the setting at the course or organization level.

    You manage course tools in the Original Course View on the Course Tools page.

  5. In the Scope of Change column, select the lock icon to open the menu and select where the change is applied, such as for new courses only. Based on the change, the menu may only have one option.
  6. In the Available to Guests and Available to Observers columns, if check boxes appear, you can allow these roles access to the tool. You can't make tools with a circle and diagonal line icon available to guests and observers.

Select Submit to save your changes.

More on how to set default course tools

System tools using LTI

Administrators can integrate external tools with Blackboard Learn using the Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) protocol. You can setup these tools within the system and allow access in different areas of Blackboard Learn, including the Tools page of the base navigation in the Ultra Experience.

To place an LTI tool on this page, select System tool on the Manage Placements page for the chosen tool.

More on LTI