Scheduled Maintenance 8th January

Please be aware that two of our suppliers have scheduled downtime for updates early in the new year.

  • Panopto will be down on 8/1/22 from 10pm for 4 hours
  • Turnitin will be down on 8/1/22 from 0.00 to 8.00

Both systems will be unavailable during this time. If this will impact on your students, for example for assignment submission, we recommend that you send an announcement to make them aware.

Hiding Turnitin Assignments in the Grade Centre

A reminder that, following the changes to Turnitin in September 2020, it is possible for students to access their grades and feedback prior to the feedback release date via the Grades section if the assignment column is not hidden in the grade centre.

This is a simple step that just needs to be completed as part of the assignment setup process. If you did not do this at the time you set up the submission point, make sure that it is hidden before you start marking in order to prevent feedback being accessed prematurely.

See the ‘Post Setup Actions’ section of our Turnitin Guidance for instructions.


Removal of older collaborate videos

To all Collaborate users

Collaborate has been used extensively again this semester with 2377 recordings being made since 1st September to date totalling over 544 hours of recording.  Because Collaborate is a live interactive tool, many recordings don’t ever get played back, but the most played back recording this semester was in the School of Sport and Exercise Science with a huge 286 playbacks.

Collaborate infographic

We now need to review our storage of Collaborate recordings as we are once again approaching the limit included in our licence. We are therefore proposing to remove any recordings made before 1st January 2021. At the height of the pandemic in Semester 1 last Year a huge 10,245 recordings were made and, as most of these are now over a year old, it is necessary to remove these from the system to make room for new recordings.

If you have any recordings you would like to keep please download them from your Collaborate area by 18th December and upload them to Panopto where they will have the added benefit of being automatically captioned. Please see our step-by-step guidance on how to do this. Any recordings made prior to 1st January 2021 will be removed from the system on 3rd January 2021. If you have questions or concerns about this, please contact

We also have some suggestions for best practice to help make the best use of Collaborate:

  • Only record sessions which will need to be accessed again.
  • When recording a long session, stop the recording during breaks or activities offline or in breakout groups.
  • If running a session with little or no interactivity consider using the Panopto webcast feature.
  • Delete any old recordings which are no longer required (statistics show that the vast majority of recordings are only accessed within 30 days of the original event)


Finding and Sharing your Panopto Resources

Panopto is the University’s desktop and lecture recording tool and video hosting platform. Panopto is integrated into Blackboard and permissions to view videos are associated with the Blackboard course.

Panopto inforgraphic

  • On each Blackboard course there is an associated ‘Panopto course folder’. Any videos in this folder can be viewed by anyone on the course.
  • In addition to this you have your own personal ‘My folder’; any videos in this folder are only viewable to you. If you want to move videos from your My folder into your Course folder, please see this guide to moving Panopto videos.

How can I see where my videos are located?

Go to any Blackboard course where Panopto has been provisioned.

Click on the ‘Panopto Video’ link on the left-hand menu of your Blackboard module.

Here you will see all videos in the corresponding Panopto course folder.

To access your My folder, click the drop-down arrow next to the name of your course.

Location of the course within Panopto

You will then see your ‘My Folder’:

Folder structure within Panopto

Note that if you click on ‘Everything’ you will see all the videos you have access to.

You can use the search box to search within a folder.

While this is the default, you can manually change the share settings on any video or any folder. To do this, please see the Panopto Sharing guide.

If you have any queries, please contact us at and we will be happy to help.





TEL Workshops Autumn 2021

Baffled by Blackboard? Confused by Collaborate? Puzzled by Panopto? Well fear not. The Technology Enhanced Learning Unit will be running a series of workshops to help you get to grips with the various education technologies on offer.

The first session, “Blackboard Made Simple” will be of particular benefit to staff members who have recently joined the organisation.

Workshop Title  Date 
Blackboard Made Simple  9th September 10:15 – 11:15 
Using Tests and Surveys in Blackboard  21st September 10:15 – 11:45 
Blackboard Accessibility and Ally  23rd September 10:15 – 11:45 
Camtasia  29th September 10:15 – 11:45 
Collaborate Virtual Classroom  30th September 10:15 – 11:15 
An Introduction to Panopto  4th October 10:15- 11.30 
Using Blackboard for Blended and Mobile Learning  5th October 10:15 – 11:45 
Assessing student presentations online using Collaborate and Panopto  6th October 1:15pm – 2:15 pm 
Vevox Polling Software  12th October 10:15 – 11:30 

If you would like to sign up for any of the sessions, please do so via the Staff Development Workshop pages of the Staff Portal.

Are you September-ready?

How was your Summer? Good I hope. Well I’m afraid to tell you, that’s all over now and it’s time to limber up for a new academic year.

Do you have everything in place, ready for your students to arrive? Here is our checklist to help you to prepare.

Have you enrolled on your modules?

As has been the case for the last couple of years, you will need to enrol on your modules via the Blackboard 2021-22 form, which you will find on the staff portal after signing in. Please allow 24 hours for your request to be actioned. Please note that course leaders also need to complete this step.

There is also a Blackboard Access 2020-21 form still live on the staff portal. If you are taking over a module this year, it may be useful to enrol on last year’s module.

Have you familiarised yourself with the new navigation?

Yes, we have moved to Ultra-based navigation which has given Blackboard a sparkly new facelift. Give yourself a few moments to get familiar with the new layout. We have prepared a video for students, which should give you most of the information you need. Feel free to share this with your students too.

Have you transferred your content?

As ever, modules will be empty and you may want to transfer content from the 20-21 instance of the module. Do not transfer the Assessment page as assignments need to be set up afresh each year. Migrating assignments can cause serious problems in the grade centre of the new module, so it really is best avoided.

Instructions for transferring content can be found here.

Sharpen your skills

We run a range of courses designed to help you get the most out of Blackboard. These are published on the Staff Development Workshop page and will be advertised via our Twitter, blog and the staff newsletter.

If you require one-to-one training on a specific area of Blackboard, email us with details at

Changes to Blackboard Navigation

To all Blackboard Users,

In August we will be updating Blackboard to incorporate the new Ultra Base Navigation. This new navigation has a sleek, modern look and feel and will save you time with simpler workflows and easier access to important information.

Your courses will not change. They will look and operate exactly as they do now.

What is Ultra Base Navigation?

It is a modern, intuitive navigation menu that lives outside of courses. It includes links to new pages such as the Activity Stream, Calendar, Messages, etc. that provide quick access to the most critical information consolidated from all your courses.

What does this mean for me?

Your Blackboard will automatically be updated. UBN will bring a range of benefits:

  • Modern, intuitive user experience. You and your students will enjoy this simple, intuitive, engaging user experience.
  • Works well on mobile devices. This navigation is designed to work well regardless of which device you’re using.
  • Aggregates important information. All your course and organization information – like calendar, messages and grades – is now consolidated into one global view, minimizing the time spent navigating into each individual course.
  • Only one click away. See something that needs your attention? Just click on it and you will be taken directly there, minimizing clicks and saving time.

This is the first step in the roadmap that will ultimately allow users to trial Ultra courses.

You can view more detail about the benefits of UBN via the document below:


More information will be available from the TEL team at

Blackboard Rollover 2021-22

Blackboard modules for the 21/22 academic year are now available and ready for you to start working on.
As in previous years you will need to re-register for access to the new modules from the staff web pages – instructions can be found here:
We have amended the standard template very slightly to include a link to the Panopto Video tool by default. If you don’t want to use this it can be removed or hidden from students but this is now widely used so we have included in the template for this year.
All modules have the basic template with pre-populated menu items which relate to the University baseline standards . This ensures a level of consistency which is one of the top priorities that students have requested – see our Students’ top tips for Blackboard.

You may want to consider migrating content from last year’s modules. If you do this, it is very important that you do not roll over the assessment tab or any of the assessments within, as this will cause problems within your grade centre. If you roll over any tests or quizzes please note that these will not be automatically deployed, so you will need to insert them into the appropriate area within your module.

Whilst consistency is an important factor, we recognise that all modules are individual and you may want to look at some of the other tools and functionality available in Blackboard – we have a full online Blackboard guide but if you need any further support from the TEL team, either individually or as a course or module team please contact to arrange a session with an Academic Learning Technologist.

Decommissioning Uniview

As you may know we introduced Panopto last year as the University’s primary video management system.

As part of this project we arranged for any video still in use from Uniview to be migrated to Panopto and this work has now been completed and users who previously had videos in Uniview should now find them in their “My Folder” in Panopto. To make these available to students you will need to move them from your “My Folder” to the appropriate Blackboard module folder and instructions on how to do this can be found here

Our licence for Uniview is about to expire and the system will be closed down permanently on 12th July. Please double check your folder in Panopto before this date to ensure that you have access to any legacy video before the system is shut down as we will be unable to retrieve any Uniview videos after that date.

Collaborate Gallery View

Gallery view in Collaborate is now live! From April 2021 if you are the Moderator of a Collaborate session, you can make use of the new Gallery view, which enables you to see up to 25 participant videos on screen.

Click on the View icon in the top right of the screen to switch between views.

Collaborate view menu

Blackboard will extend Gallery view to all participants later in the year.

Find out more from this short video