Blackboard Learn Review

Blackboard Inc.
Product:
Vendor:
Founded:
Headquarters:
Blackboard Learn
Blackboard Inc.
1997
Washington DC
Ownership:
Customers:
Deployment Model:
Free Trial:
Private
Unknown
Cloud, On-Premise
Yes
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Blackboard Learn At A Glance

Good: Blackboard Assist feature that helps students access their school's resources, Blackboard App, the ability to measure course or student success.
Bad: Interface looks outdated and is not always intuitive.
Bottom Line: Long-time LMS solution designed to help students and employees improve their learning experience.

Product Overview

Like Moodle, Blackboard Learn is a web-based LMS that’s used in both the academic and business environments to help students and employees improve their learning experience. It’s easily customized to an organization’s needs and integrates with Microsoft OneDrive, school information systems and Dropbox.

Blackboard Learn is tailored to four different markets: K-12, higher education, businesses and government. All four markets share Blackboard Learn’s main features, such as testing/assessments, discussions and a dedicated user learning profile.

Blackboard Learn can be deployed in three ways: cloud, self-hosting (on-premise) and managed hosting.

Features

Blackboard Learn has many features. Here are some of its key ones.

Blackboard App – The Blackboard Learn App empowers learners to access their courses while on the go. They can participate in real-time virtual classes and discussions, take assessments and get assignments, notes and reminders with the notification-based system. The app is available on Apple and Android devices.

Blackboard Analytics – With this feature, administrators and learners can measure their performance of a specific class or program. Learners can access their student-facing dashboard to track their activity in comparison with their peers. Administrators can filter and drill down into their data on specific metrics like students at-risk of earning a failing grade or tools that are most used or least used in a course.

Blackboard Assist – The Blackboard Assist feature serves as a 24/7 resource to help students access the school’s services, such as financial aid, mental health or tutoring. Administrators can easily create and publish specific modules with the help of Blackboard’s partners (Bartleby Help, Bartleby Write, GoPeer). Note that this feature is available to higher education clients that deploy Blackboard Learn in the cloud.

Integration – Blackboard Learn has a partner network of over 300 third-party content management and other tools, so organizations can integrate it with their existing systems. It also connects with the Blackboard Collaborate virtual classroom tool.

Target Market

Blackboard is intended for both the academic (K-12 and colleges/universities) and corporate environments. Within the corporate environment, Blackboard is targeted to all company sizes and industries. We’ve listed ten of its clients below:

  • Advisory Board Company
  • ConocoPhillips
  • Dog Academy
  • Fresenius Medical
  • Jiffy Lube
  • Mortgage Bankers Association
  • Metro Nashville Public Schools
  • Northern Illinois University
  • OneBlood
  • Tulane University

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Implementation/Integration

Blackboard has a partner network of implementation consultants that can guide organizations in the deployment process. It uses a project management methodology that’s tailored to an organization’s needs and requirements, so the implementation process is not a one-size-fits-all approach.

There is a wide variety of training options for Blackboard Learn either onsite or online (or both). Some of the training options include:

  • 30-day preview of program materials
  • Introduction to Blackboard and Blackboard Learn
  • Online downloads of new student orientation and training program development courses
  • Onsite and online Learn SaaS Administration courses
  • Technical Administration courses (for systems administrators and developers)

Blackboard also offers training that’s customized to the school or business.

Customer Service & Support

Blackboard Learn users can access the dedicated help site for answers to troubleshooting and other commonly-asked questions. Blackboard also offers tutorials on its YouTube channel and a community forum for connecting with other users.

For system administrators and developers, there is a dedicated site called Behind the Blackboard for support resources, software update downloads and reference materials.

Pricing

Blackboard doesn’t publicly release pricing information. However, we’ve estimated how much it costs, based on different sources.

Please contact them directly for a price quote.

Shortcomings

Some users have mentioned that the interface looks outdated and is not always intuitive.

Screenshots

Blackboard Inc. Screenshot 1
Blackboard Inc. Screenshot 2
Blackboard Inc. Screenshot 3

About

Blackboard Inc. has a long history in the LMS space – it was founded in 1997 with its Blackboard Learn solution debuting in 1998. Its mission is to “re-imagine education” with a goal of making learning more accessible and meaningful for learners.

In addition to Blackboard Learn, Blackboard offers different solutions, such as the Blackboard Engage (predictive analytics), Blackboard Collaborate, Blackboard Ally and Blackboard Web Community Manager.

Headquartered in Washington DC, Blackboard has many locations both in the U.S. and around the world.

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