Online Learning

Frequently Asked Questions

Contact Information
Online Learning Team

The Online Learning Team is available to answer any questions you have about Blackboard.

These Frequently Asked Questions relate to the use and implementation of Blackboard. If you have a question about performing a specific function in your courses, please see our tutorials section.

General FAQs

  1. Who do I call for help?
  2. What is my username and password?
  3. Can I change my username?
  4. Can I change my password?
  5. I have changed my password, but have forgotten it. How do I reset it?
  6. What operating system and browsers are recommended for using Blackboard?
  7. I am a chair/member of a university committee, academic group, student group, or department, and would like to use Blackboard for my group.
  8. When I click on a link in my Blackboard course, I get an error message. What should I do?
  9. When are courses created? When will my enrollments be available?

Faculty FAQs

  1. Do I need to make a request to have my course added to Blackboard?
  2. How long do courses remain on the Blackboard server?
  3. Can I post Audio or Video materials to my Blackboard site?
  4. I am teaching multiple sections of the same course in the same semester, can I combine the sections into a single Blackboard course?
  5. What is a “Course Cartridge?
  6. I am getting messages that my course is nearing or has exceeded the maximum size limit, what should I do?
  7. Can I reuse course content from previous semesters in the current term?
  8. What is the difference between a survey and a test?
  9. My assessment (test/survey) is already deployed and some students have already taken it, but I need to alter it, what can I do?
  10. Who is responsible for archiving courses?
  11. How would you suggest I track attendance in Gradebook?
  12. On my Mac, the Grade Center display has no horizontal scroll bars, no matter which browser I use. How do I fix this?

Who do I call for help?

For most questions with Blackboard or other aspects of Online Learning, call the Online Learning Team at 504-864-7168, or send an email to onlineed@loyno.edu. For urgent Blackboard problems outside of normal business hours, call the 24-hour Blackboard support line at 1-866-562-7278.

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What is my username and password?

Your Blackboard user name is the same as your Loyola email address before the "@loyno.edu". Your default password is the first two letters of your first name, in lower case, followed by the last four digits of your Social Security Number. For example, John Doe with a SSN of XXX-XX-1234 would have a password of "jo1234". See below for information on changing your password.

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Can I change my username?

No, Since the system uses your username as a unique identifier, it is the only piece of personal information that is not editable.

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Can I change my password?

Yes. On your "My Institution" page, go to the tools menu on the left hand side and select "Personal Information" and then "Change password". You will be prompted to enter your new password twice.

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I have changed my password, but have forgotten it.
How do I reset it?

You can reset a forgotten password in two ways:

  • At the Blackboard login screen click on "Forgot Your Password?". The system will ask you to enter your first name, last name, and either your email address or Blackboard User Name. The system will then send you an email with instructions on how to reset your password.

  • Call the Online Learning Team

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What operating system and browsers are recommended for using Blackboard?

Most laptop and desktop computers running either Apple/Mac or Microsoft Windows operating systems will be able to access Blackboard. You will need a recent (up-to-date) version of a web browser that is compatible with Blackboard. We recommend either Google Chrome or Firefox, which can be downloaded for free. Microsoft's Internet Explorer has difficulties with some Blackboard features. Apple's native Safari browser is not compatible with Blackboard and should not be used.

There are official Blackboard Apps available for many PDAs and smartphones, but be aware that these may not provide access to every feature of Blackboard.

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I am a Chair/member of a university committee, academic group, student group, or department, and would like to use Blackboard for my group.

Contact the the Online Learning Team and a course ID will be assigned appropriate to the group. Please have a list of all users ready, complete with email addresses.

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When I click on a link in my Blackboard course, I get an error message. What should I do?

The course instructor should be informed of any links or materials that aren't working. The instructor may be able to repair the problem, depending on the cause. Both the student and/or the instructor can also call or email the Online Learning Team for help.

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When are courses created? When will my enrollments be available?

After information about courses, instructors, students, and enrollments is posted to LORA (the Loyola Online Records system), a background process transfers that information to Blackboard automatically. The transfer process is run infrequently during most of the semester, but is run daily around the time each new semester begins. If there is important information that seems not to be getting from LORA to Blackboard after 24 hours, feel free to contact the Online Learning Team.

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Do I need to make a request to have my course added to Blackboard?

No. With a few exceptions, all courses listed on LORA are automatically created in Blackboard as well.

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How long do courses remain on the Blackboard server?

Courses remain on Blackboard for at least one year after completion of the semester. Older courses may be archived and removed from the system to ensure space is available to support the current semester.

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Can I post Audio or Video materials to my Blackboard site?

Because of the large size of media files, we require such content to be hosted outside of Blackboard. Loyola provides a server for this purpose, and Blackboard can link seamlessly to content on the media server. For assistance setting up and linking to media for your course, contact the Online Learning Team.

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I am teaching multiple sections of the same course in the same semester. Can I combine the sections into a single Blackboard course?

Yes. The Online Learning Team can create a parent section that will allow the instructor to manage multiple sections of the same course in the same semester as if they were a single section.

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What is a "Course Cartridge"?

Certain publishers produce materials for Blackboard in place of or as supplement to their textbooks and then require students to purchase a “pass key” (sometimes included with the text) to access the digital materials. The use of course cartridges is at the discretion of the instructor.

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I am getting messages that my course is nearing or has exceeded the maximum size limit, what should I do?

The default size for all courses created on blackboard is 200 MB, and every effort should be made to remain under that limit. Should you exceed your limit, every attempt will be made to put your course in compliance with this policy, including optimizing files, moving multimedia content to streaming servers, etc. . In some circumstances, temporary allowances will be made to exceed the quota limit.

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Can I reuse course content from previous semesters in the current term?

Yes, copying individual items or entire courses is relatively simple. Click here to see a tutorial.

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What is the difference between a survey and a test?

Tests and surveys are created in a very similar way and with the same functionality, but have some key differences. Tests are graded assessments that integrate with the Gradebook. Surveys are anonymous and ungraded; In the gradebook, a survey will only display if the survey has been completed by a student, but will not give you their individual responses. Data from a survey can be viewed as an aggregate or in Excel format.

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My assessment (test/survey) is already deployed and some students have already taken it, but I need to alter it, what can I do?

Changes to deployed tests should only be typographical in nature. Adding or removing questions, or dramatically changing questions can cause students who have already taken the test to have incorrectly graded exams. In cases where this becomes an issue, it may be best to throw out a question.

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Who is responsible for archiving courses?

Instructors are responsible for archiving their courses. We take system backups at intervals through the year, but cannot guarantee all content will be recoverable. For more information about taking an archive of your course see the tutorial section of the Blackboard center.

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How would you suggest I track attendance in Gradebook?

Add a new item in the Gradebook, call it Attendance. Make sure that you select “no” when it asks if you want to include the item in gradebook score calculations. And every time a student is absent (or is present if you would rather) add 1 to the score. This way you will quickly see how many classes each student has missed.

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On my Mac, the Grade Center display has no horizontal scroll bars, no matter which browser I use. How do I fix this?

Click on System Preferences then General. One of the options that appears in the window that pops up is called "Show Scroll Bars." Make sure the radio button in that option is set to "Always." The setting of this option will affect all web browsers on that computer, Chrome and Firefox as well as Safari.

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