Course messages are private and secure text-based communication that occurs within courses among course members.
Although similar to email, users must be logged in to a course to read and send course messages. Messages activity remains inside the system, and users don't have to worry about email addresses that may be incorrect or outdated.
Availability of the course messages tool
To learn how to make the course messages tool available in courses and organizations, see Manage Tools.
Course messages options
You can choose whether to allow users to include file attachments with messages and create personal folders. You can disable these functions to help save disk space and prevent users from using course messages to store content. By default, users may not add file attachments to messages, and users may not create personal folders.
On the Administrator Panel in the Tools and Utilities section, select Course Messages. Select the check boxes to allow users to attach files to messages and create personal folders for storing messages.
Migrate message storage
Messages in courses and organizations created before the Blackboard Learn SaaS release 3300.0.0 were stored in flat files on a shared storage volume.
To help maintain course messages archives, you can migrate messages in courses and organizations to the Learn database. New courses and organizations always store messages in the database.
- Go to Administrator Panel > Tools and Utilities > Course Messages.
- Next to Create Migration Request, choose Select Courses/Organizations.
- Type the IDs for courses and organizations that contain messages you want to migrate. Separate the IDs with a comma.
- Select Submit.
The system starts to process the request automatically. During migration, the system skips a course or organization if it doesn’t exist, is disabled, or already uses database storage for messages.
Each course is processed one at a time, which can make migration time consuming. We recommend migrating no more than 100 courses or organizations at once.
If you want to confirm that the messages migration is successful, check the Learn system logs.
Access course messages in the Original Course View
Instructors can access messages on the Control Panel > Course Tools > Course Messages or from a customized link they add to the course menu. Students can access course messages from the customized link or from the Tools page.
In the Original experience, users can also access new messages for all of the courses they're enrolled in. Open the menu next to your name in the top-right corner and select the Updates icon. Users can view a list of notifications about important events and information in all their courses and organizations.
ULTRA: Access course messages
Users can view messages for all their courses on one page or for one course at a time.
Users access their global Messages pages from the list where their names appear first—the base navigation. Messages are organized by course. Everyone can use messages for reminders, quick questions, and social interactions.
If your institution allows the dual course approach, users can view messages from both the Ultra and Original Course Views. This information also applies to organizations.
Users can send messages to each other, multiple people, or an entire class. Messages activity remains inside the system, and no one has to worry about email addresses that may be incorrect or outdated.
In the Original Course View, instructors can access messages on the Control Panel > Course Tools > Course Messages or from a customized link they add to the course menu. Students can access course messages from the customized link or from the Tools page.
In the Ultra Course View, all users can access messages on the navigation bar. The course Messages page displays all the messages that are specific to the course users are in.
In the Ultra experience, the course messages tool is always on for your users. You can't turn it off.
For Original Course View messages, you can manage two settings in the Admin Panel > Tools and Utilities > Course Messages.
You can choose whether to allow users to include file attachments with messages and create personal folders. If you disable these functions, you may help save disk space and prevent users from storing content in course messages. By default, users may not add file attachments to messages, and users may not create personal folders.
In this short video, learn how to send and read messages.
The following narrated video provides a visual and auditory representation of some of the information included on this page. For a detailed description of what is portrayed in the video, open the video on YouTube, navigate to More actions, and select Open transcript.
Video: Messages in Blackboard Learn with the Ultra Experience shows you how to view and send course messages.
View messages from the instructor's point of view. Use your browser's back function to return here.