This page gives you an overview of how personal information is used by Blackboard when using the Blackboard Alexa Skill.

The description on this page only reflects Blackboard’s use of personal information. For information on how Amazon uses personal information for the provision of the Alexa services, please visit Amazon's privacy information page.

Due to the continuous deployment and enhancement of our products, we may update the information on this page as and when required. Latest update: November 4, 2019.

For more information on Blackboard’s data privacy practices, please visit our Privacy Center.


The Blackboard Alexa skill is a software that allows Blackboard Learn users to request and receive information stored about them in the Blackboard Learn application via an Alexa-device such as Amazon’s Echo rather than having to log into Blackboard Learn or look the information up on the Blackboard Mobile App. The user’s voice command (e.g. “Alexa, what assignments are due tomorrow”) will be translated by Amazon into a machine-digestible command that is sent securely (SSL) to Learn via an API. Learn returns the requested information securely (SSL) via an API to Amazon which in turn converts the response into an audio response that the Alexa-device will provide to the Blackboard user. Blackboard users need to opt-in and Blackboard clients can disable the Alexa functionality for all users.

When a student uses the Blackboard Alexa Skill, both Blackboard and Amazon will use personal information about the student to deliver this functionality. Amazon’s terms and privacy policies apply to the data that Amazon collects as part of the Alexa functionalities (e.g. voice recordings, responses provided via Alexa). At the same time, Blackboard’s Privacy Statement (and our contractual obligations under the agreements with our clients) apply to any information that Blackboard receives from Amazon.

The description on this page therefore only reflects Blackboard’s use of personal information. For information on how Amazon uses personal information for the provision of the Alexa services, please visit Amazon's privacy information page.



The purpose of the use of the personal information is to enable Blackboard Learn users (currently restricted to US users over 13) to use an Alexa device and the Alexa services to retrieve information from Blackboard Learn on assignments, courses, and similar information related to the user.

Data sources (source systems)

Blackboard will receive the user’s commands from Amazon. No other additional information will be collected.

Data subjects (individuals whose data is processed)

The data subjects are those Blackboard Learn users that have activated the Blackboard Alexa skill. This typically includes:

  • Students and other authorized users

Data categories

As mentioned in Data sources, the only information that Blackboard collects for the Blackboard Alexa Skill are the user commands received via Alexa.

To enable responses via Alexa, Blackboard will provide the requested user information available in Learn. The available information and data categories depend on the how our clients use Learn and what information the users request. Information provided to the user via Alexa will typically include the following data categories:

  • Name or unique identifiers
  • Information about assignments
  • Information about courses

Additionally, the requests received from Alexa and the responses provided to Alexa will be logged.

Sensitive Personal Information

Whether sensitive personal information is used, depends on the client's use of Blackboard Learn. Generally, the data categories listed don't include any sensitive personal information. Any processing of such information is determined and controlled by our clients.

Storage/Hosting information

The user commands and related responses are stored in the U.S.

Data sharing (sub-processors)

Other than as described in the overview, Blackboard does not share information with any additional third-party service providers or affiliates for the Blackboard Alexa skill. However, as described above, information is shared with Amazon who uses the information as an independent service provider in accordance with its terms of use and privacy policies.

Retention and deletion

The voice commands of the users that Blackboard receives and the related responses are retained for 12 months.