On behalf of BbCore (the Blackboard governance committee), we would like to let you know that on the weekend of July 12th, Blackboard will have Service Pack 12 (SP12) applied. A detailed schedule is below.
SP12 has been available in a test system for a couple of months now and has undergone testing by campus personnel. If you have not yet seen SP12, you are invited to do so by using a browser to connect to https://ut.courses.maine.edu. Log in with your usual UMS username and password. You must be directly connected to a university network for this to work. Also please note, that you may get a ssl certificate warning which will need to be accepted in order to proceed which is due to the use of a local certificate instead of one provided by a third party.
SP12 brings many new features. Among some of the new features that you will find are: enhanced rubrics, enhanced fillin-the-blank assessment questions, calendar, discussions, retention center, inline grading for assignments, and quick links.
The weekend that was chosen for the upgrade is around the same time as was last year’s upgrade. It was decided to stay with the same time due to the overall favorable responses from the previous year. It was felt that this time frame gives faculty more of a chance to respond to changes in the user interface and operations of the software before the hectic start of the fall semester. We realize that this schedule disrupts some ongoing summer classes, but we hope that overall this will allow for a smoother transition for the fall semester.
The detailed schedule is:
Friday, July 12th 5pm - Blackboard is taken down. Backups of the system commence.
Saturday, July 13th - Upgrade process begins
Sunday July 1th - Upgrade process completes. System testing begins.
Monday July 15th - 8am - Blackboard returns to service
Please mark these dates on your calendars, as you will have no access to Blackboard during this upgrade.
If you have further questions, please contact your campus Blackboard support person. You can also see more information online at http://support.courses.maine.edu/
Thank you for your patience during this upgrade process.