Branding and color configuration in the Learn 2016 Theme

This release includes additional options for users who wish to configure the Learn 2016 theme in all courses. In the Blackboard Learn 2016 theme, Course Menu and Theme color customization is now available through the entire interface.

Instructors and course designers can configure the course colors in the course control panel when using the Learn 2016 Theme. The course menu area appears in these colors in both desktop and mobile experiences. Extended menu areas such as the Control Panel for instructors and My Groups menu for students remain in the gray and white color scheme.

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Clear multiple choice selection

Students are now able to clear a selection from multiple-choice questions. This lets students avoid a penalty when they’ve made an initial selection and negative points are associated with answer choices.

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Additional attempts in Anonymous Grading

Instructors can now grant an additional attempt for scenarios when the student needs one and the prior attempt can't be cleared because it is in an anonymous state.

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Record attendance in Blackboard Learn

Institutions and instructors want to track attendance for various purposes, including at-risk detection, federal financial aid and accreditation compliance, and to support instructor pedagogical preference where being present is a component of a course grade.

With this release, instructors can track attendance in both experiences. In Ultra courses, a gradebook column is added when the instructor begins taking attendance. The Attendance column provides the overall attendance score in the gradebook, where it can be included in the student’s overall grade.

Based on your data region, some Blackboard Learn features may not be available. Attendance isn't supported on Internet Explorer 11.

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Cloud services integration

Instructors can copy files from their favorite cloud storage solutions when authoring Content Items or creating Assignments. Students can submit assignments from their favorite cloud storage solutions. Cloud storage that is supported includes OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, Google Drive including G suite accounts, Dropbox, and Box. 

This feature isn’t available at the time of 9.1 Q2 2018 (3400.0.0) general availability. A Cumulative Update will be required to enable the feature. 

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Create recording for feedback

An instructor or grader can create personalized feedback recordings for individual assessment attempts or manual gradebook items. Each recording can be up to 5 minutes long and can be both video and audio. The option appears in the third row of the Content Editor as a microphone icon. 

The following feedback locations are supported:

  • Assignment 
  • Test 
  • Graded Discussion 
  • Graded Wiki 
  • Graded Blog 
  • Graded Journal 
  • Feedback in a manual grade column

Students will see icons representing recordings that they can select to start streaming playback of the video on their computer or mobile device. 

More on Administrator: Recording creation Instructor: Create recording for feedback | Student: View feedback recording

Learn 2016 theme grade center enhancements

The Learn 2016 theme now has an improved grade center. Instructors will now be able to:

  • View full titles of Grade Center columns, making it easier to distinguish between similarly-titled items;
  • View as many columns as the size of their window will allow; and
  • Enter into Grade Center full-screen mode to make the most of their desktop experience

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Learn 2016 theme mobile optimization 

Tests and the learning modules tool are now optimized for web on mobile devices. In the Learning Modules tool, the table of contents will always be pinned to the bottom of the page and can be expanded or collapsed.

In tests, additional question types have been optimized for use on mobile devices.

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Learn Tomcat Java JVM Code Cache Updates

To meet Java 8 default performance requirements, we recommend that Blackboard Learn system administrators for Self-Hosted environments increase code cache settings for Tomcat JVM. These changes help maintain application performance.

You can find and update the settings using these steps:

1.    Open 

2.    Locate the following properties and update the values:

  • bbconfig.jvm.options.codecache.reserved=240m
  • bbconfig.jvm.options.codecache.initial=128m

3.    Save the changes and run to apply the changes to your environment.

LTI updates

LTI Names and Roles services

Integrated tools can retrieve course roster information to support assessment activities or provide better information about the class within the tool. This ability is formerly known as LTI Membership Service.

LTI Course tool updates

The Assessment option under Course Tool placement has been removed. There is now a setting for Student Tool and Content Type. Placements previously set to use the Assessment placement type will continue to display in the same way. If the placement is edited, the course tool type will be changed.

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New REST APIs and enhancements

This release includes new REST APIs and enhancements to previously-released web services, including:

  • Course Roles
  • System Roles
  • Course copy
  • Course tasks/status
  • LTI configure domains
  • Gradebook attempts
  • Grade schemas
  • Other gradebook improvements
  • Grading periods