Using Video in Blackboard

Video and other multimedia, such as images and audio, are powerful ways to enhance your courses. However, delivering multimedia content via the Internet, such as in Blackboard, can be tricky. Most of these files are large, which can make them difficult for students who may have a slow or unreliable Internet connection. Fortunately, there are several tools in Blackboard that can make this easier.

YouTube, Vimeo, and Other Media

If you are using a video or other media that is already available on services like YouTube or Vimeo, whether it is a video you found or one you made and posted, you can embed it within your content in Blackboard. This allows students to play the video directly within Blackboard instead of clicking a link to watch the video on the other sites. 

In the Ultra Course View, you can embed a YouTube video on a Document using the Insert/Edit Video from the Web button on the text editor toolbar.

Kaltura – Posting Videos You Create

If you have recorded a video and do not want to post it to YouTube, you can post it in Kaltura, instead. Kaltura allows you to post audio and video content in Blackboard but stores the files on a secure server and optimizes them for streaming and mobile use. With Kaltura Capture, you can easily create videos with your webcam and a recording of your computer screen. Kaltura Quizzes allow you to embed questions within the video, as well.

In the Ultra Course View, Kaltura is available within the Content Market. 

Other Online Video Sources – Embedding via HTML

For other web-based video and media sources, you may be able to embed the video manually, using embed code, if that is provided by the media source. 

On the media site, look for an icon or button to Share the media. If there is an embed option, follow these steps:

  1. On the media site, select and copy (Ctrl+C) all of the text within the Embed Code field
  2. In Blackboard, create an Ultra Document 
  3. Click the Add HTML button at the center of the page; this opens the HTML editor
  4. Paste (Ctrl+V) the embed code within the HTML window and click the Save button

Your media should now be embedded. There are some types of HTML that cannot be added because it is deemed potentially unsafe. If embedding via HTML does not work, use the Web Link option instead to post a link to the media.

Frequently Asked Questions

I have several video files I would like to upload to a Blackboard course I teach. What is a best practice for doing this?

There are several issues to consider before uploading video content to an online course: video format, file size, destination, and copyright infringement.

We do not recommending uploading video directly to Blackboard. Video files are inherently large and require specialized servers to provide an optimal experience for students to view the videos. 

Instead of uploading the video file directly, we recommend using Kaltura to post video files. Kaltura videos can be public, private to only NIU faculty, staff, and students, or limited to only the students in your course. Kaltura also optimizes the videos for streaming and mobile viewing. 

I have a video that I use in class for instructional purposes. It is ok to select segments that I want students view and use for an assignment and add just those segments to my Blackboard for the course? Or would this be a copyright infringement problem?
The issues surrounding copyright and material use within education are complex, with each individual instance unique. Faculty Members seeking to use small segments of copy written materials need to be aware of the acceptable instances for doing so. Several helpful resources include the article entitled, Copyright basics for the Academic Classroom.

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