Blackboard Learn Ultra Development Opportunities

Drake is using Blackboard Learn Ultra learning management system (LMS). The following information provides development resources available.

Quick Links for all development opportunities on this page:

Drake Sponsored Blackboard Learn Ultra Development Opportunities

Ultra Hours: Hands-on Help

Bring your computer and questions about course design for hands-on practice with the instructional design team from Drake Online and Continuing Education. Please sign up for your preferred time so we are adequately staffed. Additionally, please share any particular tools you hope to learn more about or specific questions you have. 

Upcoming Ultra Hours Fall 2024 dates

*New Location for each meeting* 

Join us for open office hours  from 11am – 2pm on: 

  • Thursday, August 8 in Cowles 201
  • Monday, August 12 in Aliber Faculty Lounge (3rd floor)
  • Tuesday, August 13 in Cline Atrium
  • Wednesday, August 14 in Meredith 124C
  • Thursday August 15 in C-S 120 (Kelley Conference Room)
  • Friday, August 16 in Howard Hall 131
  • Tuesday, August 20 in Howard Hall 212
  • Thursday, August 22 in Howard Hall 212

To meet virtually with one of our instructional design staff, please submit an Online Course Issue service request and indicate 2-3 times that would work for you. 

"Blackboard Learn Ultra Instructor Orientation" Course: Self-paced Learning

The "Blackboard Learn Ultra Instructor Orientation" course is available in Blackboard Learn. Every Drake instructor has been enrolled in the course as a student. If you cannot find this course or do not have this course, please submit a Blackboard Learn Ultra Request and select the "Add/Change/Remove User" option. It is strongly encouraged to complete the instructor orientation so you can develop quality course resources on Blackboard Learn Ultra.

Sandbox Courses: Risk-free Environment for Designing Courses

Ultra sandbox courses are a great way to test new features before you build them into your live courses with students. If you would like to request a sandbox course or need additional sandbox courses, please submit a Blackboard Learn Ultra Request and select the "Site Creation" option. The sandbox courses:

  1. provide a risk-free environment for hands-on practice in an Ultra course (this is also where you will practice skills learned from instructor orientation)

  2. allow you to build or prepare a new course in Ultra (which can later be copied into a live course, if desired)

  3. allow you to copy a previously offered Blackboard Learn Original course into an Ultra course (which can later be copied into a live course, if desired)

Blackboard Sponsored Development Opportunities

There are several opportunities available through the Anthology Community site. (Anthology is now the parent company of Blackboard products.) A one-time registration is required to sign up for webinars.

From the Home Page, select Programs and Groups from the top of the page. The following two categories each include helpful resources for the transition to Learn Ultra.

Academic Engagement Programs

  • Instructor Webinar Series group – For any Learn Ultra webinar that sounds of interest, register for the webinar or access the recording. 
  • If you prefer to scroll quickly through the presentation deck for any topic, search under Resources header on the right and open the “Instructor Webinar Series 2021 - Decks” landing page. 

Exploring Ultra Programs

  • Exploring Ultra Webinar Series group – This series includes four webinars, recorded each month to reflect updates to the software:
    • Ultra Base Navigation
    • Ultra Course Design
    • Ultra Course Communication and 3rd Party Tools
    • Grading and Managing the Gradebook in Ultra
  • If you prefer to scroll quickly through the presentation deck for any topic, search under Resources header on the right and open the “Slide Decks” landing page.

Blackboard YouTube Playlist

Follow the Blackboard YouTube playlist for quick access to the 50+ video tutorials on the Ultra Course Experience. Note: This option may cover tools to which Drake does not subscribe and may not give you rationale for decision making.

Course Layout and Design Assistance

Ultra Course Layout

A Blackboard Learn Ultra course layout has been designed to group course content into folders and learning modules to support clear organization and communication in courses. You can add, modify, or arrange content within your course after the layout is applied. Content that is already in the course will not be erased or changed with the addition of the layout. Request a Course Layout.

Copying Courses with the Ultra Course Layout

The copy process for courses that use the course layout is slightly different to ensure content is current and not duplicated.  This article walks you through this easy process.

Online Course Quality Checklist

This checklist allows you to review your class to ensure it meets basic standards and creates an engaging and supportive online classroom for students. Open/Download the Checklist.

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Article ID: 129815
Mon 3/8/21 3:11 PM
Fri 7/19/24 4:12 PM

Related Services / Offerings (4)

Report any errors or issues encountered while using Blackboard Learn Ultra and its associated systems.
Blackboard Learn Ultra requests for changes including user changes, consultations, custom sites, course merges, sharing/copying content, and training. (Faculty/Staff only)
Meet with an instructional technologist for assistance with a technical issue.
Meet with an instructional technologist to discuss an upcoming course or apply a course layout.