New Features Introduced in Collaborate Ultra

by / Thursday, 29 August 2019 / Published in Blackboard, Collaborate Ultra, Teaching with Technology

Over the 2019 summer term, Blackboard introduced the below new features in Collaborate Ultra which facilitate academic effectiveness and mobile learning.

– Sharing Content between Main Room and Breakout Groups
– Renaming Session Files
– Browser Pop-up Notifications
– Improved Mobile Experience




Sharing Content between Main Room and Breakout Groups

Instructors (Moderators) can now share files, with one or more breakout groups. When sharing a file with a breakout group, the first slide of the file displays by default in the breakout group.

Instructors can also retrieve files from breakout groups back into the main room. Files uploaded by students in the breakout groups will appear to instructors under the Share Files area. Once the breakout groups end, instructors can move files into the main room and share any file with everyone in the session.

This feature facilitates sharing an activity file with your students in the breakout groups and retrieving student’s work back into the main room.




Renaming Session Files

Instructors can now rename files uploaded to a session. This will allow instructors to organize names of files uploaded by the different session attendees such as students or other presenters.

From Share Files in the Collaborate panel, open the File options menu of any file and select Rename file.



Browser Pop-up Notifications

Previously, instructors might not see new chat messages, new raised hands, or new joiners when presenting. This is because the Collaborate Ultra panel was minimized or not viewable on the screen.

With the current Collaborate Ultra, this is no longer a problem. Instructors can now enable browser pop-up notifications to alert them even while the Collaborate Ultra application is minimized. Notifications will appear at the top right of the screen. Students can also enable pop-up notifications for new chat messages and new joiners.



Improved Mobile Experience

Additional features are now available to mobile users for both students and instructors. This includes polling, timer, breakout groups, and private chats.

Furthermore, the Blackboard mobile apps will not be needed to join Collaborate Ultra sessions. Users can now join sessions from the default browser of their mobile devices (iOS 11+: Safari, Android: Chrome). Users joining from the Blackboard mobile apps will also be directed to join from the default browser. This brings consistent user experience for users moving between their desktop and mobile devices.




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