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Blackboard Ultra Courses

How do I get started? 

We suggest starting with a blank course to familiarize yourself with the tools and features in the Ultra course environment. Starting with a clean slate provides an opportunity to rejuvenate your course. The course copy feature offers flexibility in selecting content to transfer from your Original course. Additionally, for increased efficiency, we recommend that you build out your course structure first and then copy over assessments like tests to avoid rebuilding them.  

To get started, go to the Blackboard Course Generator and select New-Ultra Course. You can then add content to the course or choose to copy items from previous courses.  

Creating a new ultra course

Blackboard Ultra Training 
Welcome to Intro to Ultra Sessions 

IT will be offering a series of online sessions that will introduce you to the new Ultra course format. Get ready for your fall courses and learn more about how to navigate through an Ultra Course.

Open Lab Visits

Stop by and visit with IT to assist in transitioning your Blackboard course. Bring your laptop and questions and stop in to help you transition your course for fall.  More dates coming soon. 

Blackboard Ultra Resources

Here is a collection of videos, documents, and other resources to make your transition to Blackboard Ultra successful. You can choose your topic from the list below or watch a comprehensive playlist of selected topics.  

On-Demand Instructor Ultra Course Training 
on-demand instructor ultra course training
Video Resources
Getting started
Logging into Blackboard- Customizing your Courses Tab and Navigation  Customize your Course Listing Blackboard Ultra Navigation (pdf) 
Using the Student Preview Mode as the Instructor  Student Preview 
Course Roster  Course Roster and Enrolling Students 
Using the Attendance Feature  Attendance Tool Blackboard Ultra 
Template Courses and Building Your Course
Introduction to Blackboard Law Template Course  Blackboard Ultra Course Law School Template (pdf) 
Introduction to a Blackboard Ultra Course   Navigating Blackboard Ultra Course and Tools (pdf) 
Introduction to Blackboard Template Course  Copying Content from the Template Course to Your Course 
Learning Modules vs Folders  Types of Containers, Learning Modules 
Copying Content from existing Courses  Copying Content  
Transitioning your Original Course to Your Ultra Course Creating Ultra Courses from an Original Course (pdf)
Communication Tools
Announcements Using Announcements in Blackboard Ultra 
Messages Messages Inside a Course 
Groups Creating Groups 
Creating Assignments  Create Assignments in Ultra  
Blackboard Annotate- Grading Assignments  Bb Annotate 
Safe Assign  SafeAssign for an Assessment 
Using Course Analytics  Student Analytics & Course Activity Reports 
Using Forms  Forms in Tests and Assignments 
Creating Tests  Create a Test in Ultra Courses 
Using Question Pools & Importing Question Pools  Using a Question Pool  
Student Activity Reports  Student Activity Details Student Activity for Assessments 
Grade with Rubrics  Grade with Rubrics 
Setting up the Gradebook  Accessing the Gradebook and Settings 
Grade student work Assign Grades 
Blackboard Ally  Blackboard Accessibility Scores, Alternative Formats Overview, Course Accessibility Report 
Setting Up Accommodations for Assessments  Accessing the Accommodations Panel 
Ai Tools
Introduction to AI Design Assistant 
Auto-Generating Images(unsplash)  AI Design Assistant 
Auto-Generate Learning Modules  AI Design Assistant 
Rubric Generation  AI Design Assistant 
Assignment Prompt Generation  AI Design Assistant 
Test Question Generation  AI Design Assistant 
Other Tools
Panopto  Using Panopto with Blackboard Ultra for Instructors 
Gradescope  Using Gradescope with Blackboard as an Instructor 
Poll Everywhere  Ultra Course Instructor Guide 
Zoom  Adding Zoom to Ultra Course (pdf) 
Other Resources

Anthology Community – We encourage faculty to join the Anthology Community to discuss new features and interact with those already using Blackboard Learn Ultra.  

Anthology Idea Exchange- This site encourages you to share, like and vote on favorite ideas that have been submitted or proposed by clients of Anthology. Help drive the change in the EdTech community.  Locate the Teaching & Learning Idea Exchange and click on Start Now. You will need to create a username and password (this is not the same as your W&M credentials). 

Student Resources
Frequently Asked Questions
frequently asked questions
How can I see a Demo Course with a student role? 

The Demo Course provides a student perspective on the various functionalities of an Ultra Course. It highlights the distinctions between Learning Modules and Folders. You are invited to participate in a practice quiz or contribute to a discussion. Please note that this course is for demonstration purposes only and does not include any instructor engagement.

To self-enroll as a student in the Demo Course follow the directions below: 

  1. Login to Blackboard and go to the Courses tab. 
  2. In the top right corner click on Course Catalog. 
  3. Search for the title of the course Bb Demo Ultra Course 
  4. Click on the course chevron and select enroll.  
  5. Submit your request and you will see the course listed in your courses tab under courses you are taking

Bb Ultra Course Demo

What best practices can you share about creating your Ultra Course? 
  • Ultra Courses are different from Original Courses in Blackboard. You will need to be open-minded about how you rethink and design your course. 
  • Start the process early.  Don’t wait till the start of the fall term to design or convert your course content. Take advantage of the online training opportunities and open labs to help you get started.  
  • Organize your course in a logical manner.  All content is on one page. Think about what the student experience looks like when setting up your Learning Modules or folder structure.  
  • Make sure you know the communication tools being used in an Ultra Course. Get in the habit of checking those areas often. (ex. Messages, Discussions, Grade book) 
  • Utilize the AI tools to help save time and design your course structure (Learning Modules, Banner Images, Discussion Questions, Tests Questions) 
  • Use the Bb Example Course to bring over any polices or Getting Started guides for your course. 
What do I do if I want to convert an Original Course to an Ultra Course? 

The best option is to create a blank course through the Blackboard Course Generator and choose to Copy Content from your previous courses (including Original Courses) using the built-in tool available in the Ultra Course. This allows you to choose areas or items within a previous course to bring over. This will give you a chance to review old content and create new.  

Ultra Copy Content