New in eLearning – Attendance Tool, Cloud Storage, Audio/Video Feedback (Q2 2018)

Over the holiday break, UTD’s Blackboard (eLearning) server was successfully upgraded to Q2 2018. Below are highlights of some of the new/improved functionality.


Many instructors use attendance data as part of students’ overall grades. Blackboard has introduced a tool that enables instructors to quickly mark students as present, late, absent, or excused. The attendance record for each student is automatically included as a single column in the Grade Center.

Below is a quick overview of the new Attendance Tool functionality. Additional information can be found on Blackboard’s website.


Instructors can now copy files from their favorite cloud storage solutions when creating content in eLearning. Students can submit assignments from their favorite cloud storage solutions as well. Supported cloud storage solutions include Box, Google Drive, OneDrive, and Dropbox.


Below are links to helpful information.


Instructors can now embed audio/video recordings in the Feedback to Learner window as they grade attempts. 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.


inserted feedback

Additional information on this new audio-video feedback functionality can be found on Blackboard’s website.


3 Reminders for Faculty Before the Start of Semester

With the new semester starting in less than a week, the eLearning team wanted to provide a few reminders to faculty to ensure that courses are ready to go.

Merge your courses

eLearning will automatically merge certain courses, but faculty are also able to merge courses themselves with the Merge Course Tool.

Please note: Merging courses will delete any material and student information in them. If you want to merge your courses, it is highly recommended that you merge them as soon as possible to avoid losing any important materials.

Copy courses over

If your course is a re-run from a previous semester, you can easily copy an old offering into your upcoming one to save time. We wrote a blog post detailing the steps.

Add your users

If your course needs to have certain non-student roles (such as graders or teaching interns), you can request to add them using the Add Other User Form here (or found at the bottom of eLearning). You can also add Teaching Assistants with the Add TA Form here.

Please make sure the user you are requesting to add has completed FERPA training. This is required for all roles in which student information is visible to the user. Once the form has been submitted, the request will be processed by the Registrar’s Office. Requests can take several business days to process.

If you have any questions or thoughts, please leave a comment down below or email us at

eLearning Training & Support Information – Spring 2019

As we head into the Spring 2019 semester, we would like to remind everyone of ways to receive training and support on eLearning and other educational technology tools.


  • We offer hands-on training workshops on eLearning and other educational technology tools for faculty, staff and TA/ RAs. For more information on workshop topics and to request training, please click here.
  • We post video tutorials and handouts that explain how to do various teaching and course building tasks within eLearning. To view these tutorials, please visit this page.
  • We offer Online Teaching Certifications to faculty (full-time and adjunct) who teach online or hybrid/ blended courses. These certifications would also benefit Graduate Teaching Assistants (including Post-Doctoral associates) who have instructional responsibilities. For more information please click here.


We have open labs every week to provide hands-on assistance with eLearning and other tools. No registration required. You can stop by during lab hours receive assistance from a member of the eLearning team. Lab schedule and details are as follows:

    10:00 AM – NOON
    JSOM 2.224
    This is a walk-in lab. You can bring your own device or use a lab computer.
    2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
    This is an online/ virtual lab. To receive assistance, you will need to use a desktop/ laptop and join the WebEx session during lab hours.

    Here’s how to join the virtual open lab:

We have a helpdesk ticketing system to assist faculty and staff with eLearning issues. Please email your issue with a detailed description to This will generate a ticket for your reference and a member of the eLearning team will look into the issue and get back to you.

We have an eLearning on-call support number to assist faculty/ staff with urgent after-hours issues in their eLearning course/s. The number to call is 214-208-3408. This will directly put you in touch with a member of the eLearning team. Please note that this service is for faculty/ staff only. We will not be able to assist students. We request to kindly not share this number with students.

For more information please visit our webpage or email us at

eLearning Upgrade Outage Scheduled – Dec.29, 10pm – Dec.30 (11am)

An eLearning outage has been scheduled for Saturday, Dec.29 (10pm) until Sunday, Dec.30 (11am).  This 13hr window will be used to upgrade eLearning. During this time, eLearning will not be available.  If you have any questions, please contact


Thanks, and Happy Holidays!

Merge Course Tool now available


The Merge Course Tool is now available in eLearning, and faculty can use it to merge S19 courses. We apologize for the issues experienced last week. Thank you for your patience as we worked to address the issues as quickly as possible. (Any courses that are officially cross-listed in Orion have been automatically merged for faculty.)

TUTORIAL: How to use the Merge Course Tool



Courses will automatically become available to students the morning of the first day of the semester (January 14). If you would like your students to access your course before the first day of class, please complete the eLearning Early Course Access Form.

Copying an Exam for Examity

Instructors who used the Respondus LockDown Browser and are interested in using Examity should be aware that the two services are not compatible with one another. If your exams have LockDown enabled but a student needs to use Examity, you will need to make a copy of your exam for Examity use. To do this, follow the steps below:

  1. Navigate to Tests, Surveys, and Pools under the Course Tools
  2. Select Tests.
  3. Click the arrow beside the exam you want to copy, then select Copy. A new exam will appear with (1) beside the name.
    Exam Copy

    • If you would like to change the exam’s name, follow the instructions below:
        • Click the arrow beside the exam, then select Edit.
        • Beside the words Test Canvas: [Your Exam Name], click the gray arrow, then select Edit.Editing Exam Name
      • Edit the exam name in the appropriate field.
      • Select Submit.
  1. Deploy the exam within your course and adjust the settings as necessary.
    • If you did not change the exam’s name in Step 3, make sure to do that now by adding the word “Examity” somewhere in the exam name. This will help the Examity proctors identify the correct exam.
    • If you don’t want anyone else accessing this version, please set the exam dates for after the semester ends.
  2. Create an exception for the student(s) who need Examity.
    • Click the arrow beside the deployed Exam name, then select Edit the Test Options.
    • Scroll down to the Test Availability Exception
    • Select Add User or Group and select the student(s) who need to take the exam with Examity.
    • Adjust the settings (time limit, date, etc.) as necessary.

Leave a comment below with any questions or comments.

Spring 2019 Courses; Add TA/Other Users; Early Access

Spring 2019 Courses – Spring 2019 courses are now accessible to instructors in eLearning.  Students are also loaded into these courses; however, these courses are not visible to students until the first day of class (January 14th).

REMINDER: Adding Users to Your eLearning Course

Below are forms to have users added to your eLearning courses. We strongly recommend that all requests be submitted before the Spring 2019 semester begins.


INSTRUCTIONS: How to Add a TA to your eLearning Course

– Request submitted by the Instructor-Of-Record via Orion

– TA must have already completed FERPA training to be added your eLearning course.

FORM: Add a User (Other than a TA) to Your eLearning Course

– submitted by the Instructor-of-Record or Department Head
– requires justification

– will be submitted to Registrar for consideration for approval

Merged Courses

– Courses that are combined in Orion will be automatically merged in eLearning within the week. We’ll send out an email once this is done.

– The Merge Course Tool is not yet available for Spring 2019 courses.  The LMS Tech group will turn on the tool after the Orion-combined courses are processed.


Opening an eLearning Course Early – If you are interested in making your Spring 2019 eLearning course available/accessible to your students prior to the first day of the semester, please complete/submit an ELEARNING COURSE EARLY ACCESS FORM.
PLEASE NOTE: Courses can be opened up to one month prior to the semester start.  So the earliest date for courses to be opened is December 14th.