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All Spring 2024 Courses to be Taught in the Ultra Course View

Faculty are strongly encouraged to teach their Fall 2023 courses in the Ultra Course View. All Spring 2024 courses will use the Ultra Course View. Previous courses taught in the Original Course View will remain in Original as an archive.

CITL will be offering the Ultra Transition Academy twice this fall to help faculty prepare their courses in the Ultra Course View. There is also a self-paced workshop on Transitioning to the Ultra Course View for those who would like to work on their own. Keep an eye on the Upcoming Workshops for sessions on making the move to Ultra as well as on using specific features in the Ultra Course View.

Learn more about the comprehensive resources and support for faculty making the transition to Ultra Course View this fall.

Featured Resource

Faculty Tips for Starting the Semester with Blackboard

Start the semester strong with reminders and links that can answer frequently asked questions you may have, as you request course space and get ready to develop your courses in Blackboard.

View Guide

Blackboard is the course management system used campus-wide at NIU. Faculty and TAs use Blackboard to course materials, deliver tests and surveys, hold online discussions, and facilitate many other course-related functions. Both the Original Course View and the Ultra Course View are available.

Students need their NIU AccountID / ZID and password to log in to Blackboard. Learn more about getting started with Blackboard at NIU.

More Students Getting Started

Faculty need their NIU AccountID / AID and password to log in to Blackboard. Learn more about getting started teaching with Blackboard at NIU.

More Faculty Getting Started

Upcoming Workshops

All event times are listed in Central Time Zone (CT).

Recorded Workshops

Blackboard Getting Started Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

How do I open my course to my students?

Courses, by default, are not available to students until the faculty member decides to make them available or until the first day of the semester, if you selected Auto-Availability when requesting the course. After the scheduled section is created and materials added to the course, you can make the course available by accessing the Course Availability Settings in one of three locations:

  • From the Tools tab on the base navigation, click Course Availability Settings
  • In Original Course View, in the Control Panel, click Course Tools and then click Course Availability Settings
  • In Ultra Course View, in the Details & Actions panel, click View Course & Institutional Tools and then click Course Availability Settings

Setting the availability is an immediate process (meaning the faculty member does not have to wait for the server to run in order for the command to be processed).

At the end of the semester, faculty do not need to reverse this process, as all NIU courses are automatically set to be "unavailable" 10 days before the beginning of the next semester. Once a course is made unavailable, students lose all access to the course and are unable to see the course in their list of courses.

Why don't I see the icon to convert my course from Original to Ultra Course View?New

In order to convert your course from the Original Course View to the Ultra Course View, the course has to be completely private/unavailable. If you left the check box selected to automatically open your course to students on a specific date, your course is technically available, even though students won't be able to access it until that date. You will need to first make your course unavailable by clicking the lock icon in the upper right corner of your course.

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Technical Support and Student Help

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Teaching Support and Faculty Help

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