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.

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

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 3900.13.0: Update to client Production environments

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience

As part of our commitment to release quality, we’re applying an updated version of 3900.13.0 (full release number 3900.13.0-rel.24+cf04977) to client Production servers on Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Updates in this version include:

  • In the Ultra Experience, we've enabled colorless grading pills. Rubric grade pills are now monochromatic for both kinds of rubric in the following content types: Single attempt, multiple attempt, group, offline submission, multiple graders and anonymous grading assessments; individual and group discussions, and journals.
  • In Ultra Experience, when creating a new group assessment with a grading rubric enabled, the Grading Sidebar was not updating. When going from the first group attempt to the next one with the rubric open, it showed the rubric and feedback of the previous attempt. We've fixed the issue.

Highlight on bug fixes - 3900.15.0

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.15.0 | Release to Production 3 June 2021
Original Experience, Ultra Experience

The bug fixes in this Learn release include:

  • In the Ultra Experience, when Ultra Stream Notifications were sent to a specific, targeted role, the system announcement was sent correctly to the specific users with that institution role, but the Admin Announcement UI indicated the notification was sent to everyone. causing confusion for admins. We've fixed the issue.

  • In the Ultra Experience, in tests, the student's browser needed to be refreshed manually in order to show them tests hidden by conditional availability, even after these conditions were met. We've fixed the issue.

  • In the Ultra and Original Experiences, there were software updates related to server performance causing customer email alerts: Administrators were receiving Failed to Phone Home emails for software updates on SaaS environments. They will no longer see those emails. Also, as part of this change, the Update Status column has been removed from the Installed Tools page for Building Blocks. We've fixed the issue.

  • In the Original Experience, after a Learn user had disabled their profile image from view, other users were still able to see it as it remained publicly available. We've fixed the issue.

You can view all maintenance items in Behind the Blackboard. Our Known Issue articles provide information for individual bug fixes, and may include bug descriptions and which Learn versions were affected. You can filter bug fixes by SaaS release for easier navigation. View the 3900.13.0 maintenance issues on Behind the Blackboard.


Peer Assessment: Peer Notifications

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.15.0 | Release to Production 3 Jun 2021
Ultra Experience

This feature aims to expand previous releases of the Peer Assessment functionality. Students and instructors can learn about relevant changes in submissions via the Activity Stream. Instructors get notifications when new reviews arrive, and students get them when their reviews are graded.


Peer Assessment: Batch edit

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.15.0 | Release to Production 3 Jun 2021
Ultra Experience

This feature aims to expand previous releases of the Peer Assessment functionality. Instructors can edit peer review items in batches. They can adjust the due date of separate items at the same time by delaying or advancing the date in a given batch.


Reset Signed URL configuration

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.15.0 | Release to Production 3 Jun 2021
Original Experience

This feature improves content delivery, accessibility and performance for China users, serving all files via Fastly CDN Servers. The server will auto-configure and set up the user’s session to use or not to use signed URLs during login. Administrators can manually adjust exceptions by contacting Blackboard Support.


Course Auto-Archive performance and efficiency improvements

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.15.0 | Release to Production 3 June 2021
Ultra Experience, Original Experience

This feature fixes known issues related to instability and offers these enhancements:

  • Implements a safety-net to prevent archiving courses from constant failure.
  • Adds more sources that admins can store as a reference, instead of having them as file data, for more efficiency.
  • Makes sure to enable auto-archives for all sites as part of each release.

Learn SaaS release 3900.13.0: Update to client Test environments

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience, Original Experience

As part of our commitment to release quality, we’re applying an updated version of 3900.13.0 (full release number 3900.13.0-rel.19+fa9ae0b) to client Test servers on Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Updates in this version include:

  • In the Original and Ultra Experiences, for LTI links with the proctoring changes added, the Deep Linking response wasn't handling properly array aud fields. We've fixed the issue.
  • In the Original and Ultra Experiences, Organizations, content items or files created with attachments could not be edited, and the user received an error message when attempting to modify them. We’ve fixed the issue.
  • In the Ultra Experience, briefly after the Ultra Experience was enabled on their Production environment, admin users were receiving to many emails from [email protected], even from courses they were not enrolled in. We've fixed the issue.
  • In the Ultra Experience, users were unable to post results for certain groups, getting instead an error message. We've fixed the issue.

Learn SaaS release 3900.13.0: Update to client Test environments

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience

As part of our commitment to release quality, we’re applying an updated version of 3900.13.0 (full release number 3900.13.0-rel.11+371689d) to client Test servers on Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Updates in this version include:

  • In the Ultra Experience, users enrolled with Facilitator role were getting an error message when changing assignment availability in Ultra courses as opposed to be able to change the visibility of the items. We've fixed the issue.

Highlight on bug fixes - 3900.13.0

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Original Course View, Ultra Course View

The bug fixes in this Learn release include:

  • In the Ultra Course View, when an assignment was created with Anonymous Grading, some daily notifications and digest email received after submissions were made, contained the names of the students who have submitted them. We've fixed the issue.

  • In the Original Course View, in tests, some calculated numeric questions were wrongly marked as correct when the student introduced a combination of numeric values and letters in an answer that should be numerical only. We've fixed the issue and added a further explanation on the Help pages regarding supported types of input for scientific notation, units and constants.

  • In the Original Course View, when recipients were selected for an enterprise survey response period, there was no way to identify or exclude child sections of merged courses, which caused some students to receive two copies of each survey. We've fixed the issue.

You can view all maintenance items in Behind the Blackboard. Our Known Issue articles provide information for individual bug fixes, and may include bug descriptions and which Learn versions were affected. You can filter bug fixes by SaaS release for easier navigation. View the 3900.10.0 maintenance issues on Behind the Blackboard.


Proctoring Services Framework

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience, Ultra Course View

In the Ultra Course View, we are pleased to announce the delivery of a proctoring framework to allow proctoring providers to integrate their solutions with Learn Ultra. To support high stakes secured proctored examinations has become an important component of online learning provision. With the rapid shift to blended and fully online learning due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many institutions have pivoted towards proctoring solutions to improve their capabilities to support online digital secured examinations. Thus, Blackboard has put together the necessary efforts and provide a mechanism to allow Proctoring solutions to be supported in the native Learn Ultra assessment flow.

With this release, Blackboard has developed a framework to allow proctoring providers to integrate their solutions into the native test settings of the Ultra Course View. By working closely with a number of key proctoring providers and the IMS Global Organization, Blackboard's Proctoring Framework has been built with a core focus on standards and interoperability in mind.

By leveraging and certifying against the very latest IMS LTI Proctoring standard and combining this open standards based approach with Blackboard’s own Premium APIs, we have been able to provide an extensible framework allowing partners and clients to build and deploy their integrations in Ultra. Alongside all Proctoring partners we are already working closely with, we expect to see many additional solutions and services within the assessment security realm aligning to this specification in the coming months.

Blackboard is the first and currently only LMS provider to be certified against this latest Proctoring specification.

The Proctoring Services Framework includes the following features to support instructor creation and student completion:

  • Configuration of proctoring provider: instructors can choose to configure a proctoring solution for a native Ultra test. Selecting the desired integration from the corresponding drop-down list will allow the proctoring integration to display their native settings inline.
  • New proctor secured detail and iconography: both instructors and students will see clear contextual detail and iconography in the assessment peak panel and also on the course outline indicating a test has been proctor secured.
  • Student launch: students who need to complete a proctor secured test in Ultra, will follow the same procedure for access as with a non-proctor secured test, but will include additional security settings as per the proctoring solution prior to assessment access.
  • Native Ultra assessment security: instructors can combine the flexibility of a proctor-secured test alongside the existing native Ultra access code functionality, supporting a more enhanced security flow for students taking an online test.
  • Native Ultra assessment setting support: instructors can continue to utilize the existing settings functionality with a proctor-secured assessment, including but not limited to class conversations, multiple attempts, grading categories, grading schema, automated feedback settings and additional tools depending on the selected question types used.

Proctor-secured assessments do not support group assignments


Dropping grades inside categories for overall grade calculation

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience, Ultra Course View

In the Ultra Experience and Ultra Course View, we are pleased to announce the delivery of dropping grades inside categories for overall grade calculations, as we understand flexibility is key in a LMS when we talk about managing final grades calculations for students, and there are different ways in which instructors and institutions would like to set what is considered in the overall grade calculations.

From this release on, instructors and other privileged roles will be able to decide if they want to add additional rules to how their overall grade is calculated when using calculation by categories. They'll be able to drop as many grades as they want (lowest/highest), as long as there are more items inside the category than dropped items, or to choose just the lowest or highest grade to be considered for that category. This feature serves a great variety of use cases, for instance, to help students at the end of the term or to remove outliers (highest/lowest) grades in order to get a better sense of students’ performance.

When rules are in place, students can gain access to their overall grade calculation details and see if some additional rules have been set by their instructors, which gives them clarity on how their grades are calculated and why their calculations might defer from the ones displayed in their gradebook.


Ultra messages: Unread message indication

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Ultra Experience, Ultra Course View, Original Course View

We are pleased to announce the inclusion of Unread message indication for messages on the Ultra Base Navigation. This was a highly requested feature from our community, and we are excited to bring this capability to our clients. This solution will provide a clearly identifiable number count highlighting any new messages received for both Original and Ultra courses. When a user selects the Messages tool on the base navigation, the red number count will change to a red pill icon as to reduce distraction, but navigating away from this page will again show the unread message count. This capability will provide a greater level of transparency and engagement when new messages are sent and received for all users, and continues our commitment to enhancements for the Messages tool in Ultra.


Upgrade notifications for administrators

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery v3900.13.0 | Release to Production 6 May 2021
Original Experience, Ultra Experience

In the Ultra and Original Experiences, System administrators for Learn deployed in SaaS can opt-in to receive email notifications when an upgrade process starts and completes. This is particularly helpful for SaaS clients who want to be able to communicate with their support teams and user communities, with greater specificity when feature changes are available or bug fixes have been implemented. Users with the full System Administrator role can opt-in at Admin Panel > Notifications > System Alert Settings. Each administrator must opt-in individually to receive emails.


Annotate information message

Blackboard Learn SaaS Continuous Delivery | Blackboard Learn 9.1
Ultra Course View, Original Course View

In the Original and Ultra Course Views, formatting space differences may be visible between the original uploaded document and the one rendered online for .docx, .doc, .ppt, and .pptx files. We've added an on-screen information message to let users know about this. The message appears anywhere where Bb Annotate is enabled, including the Mobile View. Instructors and students are able to download the original file as usual.



Looking for older release notes?

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