Blackboard Collaborate 12 adds mobile support, user improvements and LMS integrations
Blackboard Inc. today announced updates to its Web conferencing platform with the release of Blackboard Collaborate™ 12. With the new version, Blackboard Collaborate adds enhanced integrations for learning management systems (LMS), user experience improvements that make the system easier to use and more accessible, and plans to add support for mobile access.
The release plans to support an interactive mobile application, Blackboard Collaborate Mobile, scheduled to be available later this summer. The app would allow students to join live sessions from an iPad™ or iPhone® through a link in the LMS, an email or calendar invite that recognizes their device and credentials automatically. Through the app, students would view presentations and whiteboard activity, communicate through chat and audio, and even raise a hand to request attention from the instructor. Instructors would be able to see who is attending the session on mobile devices and assign grades for attending live sessions or viewing recorded ones.
“Everything in our society is going mobile and we believe that education needs to do the same,” said Mark Gensimore, vice president of business and professional development at blendedschools.net. “Blackboard Collaborate Mobile is an essential piece of that puzzle for us.”
A number of user experience improvements also come with the release, many of which were driven by feedback from clients. In a significant update, echo cancellation eliminates the need for the use of specific headsets, making it easier for anyone to join sessions and saving users and their institutions the expense of procuring and distributing headsets. The release also improves chat capabilities and enhances closed captioning to offer more viewing options for users with disabilities.
“Technology should make education simpler and more accessible, and that’s the focus of this new release,” said Maurice Heiblum, president of Blackboard Collaborate. “We are continually focused on bringing innovation that helps users interact more easily, whether it’s online, through an LMS or on a mobile device.”
Check out the full details at the PR Newswire.