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Navigating Blackboard


Once logged in, tabs along the top of the Blackboard page should appear. Each tab contains different information and tools that are available to you. In addition some of the information displayed on the tabs is unique for your profile.


Suffolk Online: The Suffolk Online tab contains modules displaying information such as Institution and Course announcements, Notifications, Tools that include your Personal Information, Tasks and Grades, and then Information where you can get help.

Courses: The Courses tabs contains Notifications, a To Do list, Alerts and your Course List. The Course List is where you will access the courses you are enrolled in. Just click on the course’s link to access that course’s page.



Content Collection:  This area is a virtual hard drive that allows faculty and students to store, manage and share content. Files stored here can be accessed from any computer just by logging into Blackboard.

Uploading Files: Your files can be uploaded either through a ZIP file or by using the Upload Multiple Files and Folders feature. Please note uploading multiple files and folders requires the Java plugin, version 1.5 or later. If the plugin is not available, use the single file option to add files one at a time.

  1. Start by clicking on Upload in the Content Collection. Select either Upload Files or Upload ZIP Package.

    1. Upload Files – Click Browse to Upload one file at a time or Drag and Drop files into the area provided. Click on Submit to complete your upload.
    2. Upload ZIP PackageBrowse for the Zip file and click Submit to upload it.

Organization: Your files can be organized by putting them into folders. To create a folder in your Content Collection, click on Create Folder, then type in the name of the folder and click on Submit.


Permissions: You can choose to share your files or folders with other students or instructors so that they may see it or make changes to it.

  1. To set Permissions click on the Permissions Icon next to the file or folder.CC-Permissions
  2. Select who you want to give permissions to.
    1. Select Specific UsersType in the person’s username, Set the Permissions and click Submit.
    2. Select Specific Users by PlaceSelect the Course or Course Group to give permissions to, Select the Roles that will be given permission, Set the Permissions and click Submit.

My Blackboard

The My Blackboard menu is accessed by clicking on the down arrow next to your name in the top right corner.



Below are a list of the tools that can be accessed through the My Blackboard menu and a description of their functions.


Icon Tool Description
gn_profile Profile Your profile that you present to your peers, classmates and instructors in Blackboard.
gn_my_Bb Bb Home This gives you an overview of the items that are due and recently graded.
gn_activity_stream Posts This page displays the latest posts in the courses and organizations you are enrolled in and follow.
gn_updates Updates Review a list of notifications alerting you to important events and information.
gn_my_grades My Grades View your grades for each assignment, test or activity in all of your courses.
gn_calendar My Calendar Review everything you have due and be reminded of when you need to complete it.
gn_people People Find and interact with peers, classmates and instructors.


From the user menu in the global navigation, you can manage notification settings for all of the courses and organizations you are enrolled in. The notification system is a framework for the delivery of notifications to Blackboard Learn users. You are notified when an event occurs in the system, such as availability of a new assignment, submission of a survey, or a test due date passing.

All enabled notifications are generated automatically whenever their associated event occurs. For example, when your instructor creates an assignment and makes it available, the system automatically creates the appropriate notifications.

Notifications are delivered in the following ways:

  • If your school licenses community engagement, access notifications on the Notifications Dashboard on the home page of each course and on the My Institution tab.
  • Browse all notifications on the Updates page found in My Blackboard.
  • Receive notifications by email or on your mobile device.
  1. Edit General Settings: Define the general notification settings such as email format, deletion schedule, and reminder schedule for courses and organizations.
  2. Edit Individual Course Settings: Displays the current notification settings for courses you are enrolled in. You can make changes to the notification settings for a specific course.
  3. Bulk Edit Notification Settings: Select a set of courses or organizations to update and change the notification settings for them in one step.
  4. Edit Individual Organization Settings: Displays the current notification settings for organizations you are enrolled in. You can make changes to the notification settings for a specific organization.

Edit Notification Settings

  1. On the Edit Notification Settings page, click Edit General Settings.
  2. On the General Settings page, select to receive an email for each notification or select to receive a daily digest email that contains information on all of the notifications for that day. You can set the time for the daily digest.
    • Individual Messages: Emails will be sent for each notification. However, the digest selection is necessary for Early Warning System/Retention Center details (instructor tools only), unread discussion board messages, unread blog posts, and unread journal entries.
    • Daily Email Digest: All notifications will be collected and sent in a daily digest.
  3. Set the number of days until a notification is removed automatically.
  4. Select Yes to set due date reminders for notifications. Set the number of days before the due date to send an email. This reminder is emailed as a digest email or as individual emails, depending upon the option you select.
  5. Click Submit.

Individual Notifications and Email Notifications

You can select specific notification types and which to receive emails about. By default, all notification types are turned on to display on the dashboard.

By default, all email notification types are turned off. If you turn on the notification for a specific tool or feature, an email is sent out corresponding to that notification. For the following items, email notifications are sent out only if daily digest email is selected:

  • Early Warning System/Retention Center rule details
  • Unread discussion board messages
  • Unread blog posts
  • Unread journal entries

After selecting the appropriate settings, click Submit to save these settings.

Course Menu

The course menu appears on the left side of a course and contains links to materials and tools within the course. Your instructor can customize the look of the course menu, the organization, the links and the tools available to you. Below is an example of a Course Menu, but it may look very different depending on how your instructor customizes it.


The course menu can be collapsed and expanded by moving your pointer near the right edge of the menu and clicking on the arrow that appears.

CourseMenuMinCourseMenuExpBreadcrumb Trail: A breadcrumb trail tracks your “clicks” through course content levels. The breadcrumb trail is located at the top of each page, right under Blackboard’s tabs. Each time you click to a page or activity in a folder or module, that link is added to the trail. It’s easy to go back one level or all the way back to the beginning using this feature.

The image below shows an example of a Breadcrumb Trail.


The first breadcrumb shows that the user clicked on the Blackboard Orientation course (Home). The second shows that the user then clicked to open a folder called “Start Here!”. The third breadcrumb shows that the user then opened a page titled “Navigating My Online Course”. From the breadcrumb trail, this user could go back to “Start Here!” module or the course homepage (by clicking on the house icon).


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