As more classrooms utilize Blackboard for test taking, we've put together a few tips to help students with their exams.
MOST IMPORTANT! Log out of Blackboard and log back in again just before you start the test
Your session in Blackboard is timed. After 150 minutes of inactivity you will be asked to log back in again. If you open an exam at 10 and don’t click submit or save until 12:45 you will be logged out. That means information entered into a test will not be recorded. All the answers that you have typed into essay fields or any multiple choice answers will be lost. To log out click the power icon in the upper right corner. Be sure to save your answers as you progress through your exam.
Log out of Blackboard – don’t just close your browser
Closing the browser window doesn’t automatically log you out, instead you are logged on to that machine until the session expires. When you log into a new machine, or a different browser on that machine, a new session begins. Having multiple sessions open can lead to problems.
Have more than one browser installed on your computer
Your computer should have two browsers, one of which should not be Internet Explorer. Firefox, Safari, and Chrome are all good options. Having more than one installed means that if you experience problems you can log out of Blackboard and log in on a different browser. This simple step solves many of the most common Blackboard problems.
Delete your Internet history before you begin
Cached data can interfere with your test. Clearing the cache and removing all of your history files will help ensure that your system operates as quickly as possible. For most browsers the history is found under a History tab or in the settings area.
Close other windows or tabs
As appealing as it might be to open another window to check the spelling of a word, or quickly look up a fact, leaving your Blackboard session for too long will log you out of the system. Any information you have typed in the test that has not been saved will be lost when you have to log in again.
Save your answers as you go
Click on the ‘save’ button in the upper right of each question. Most tests will autosave answers; however don’t rely on the autosave function. Saving as you go records your responses in the Blackboard database. If you don’t see the question marked as saved your answer has not be recorded in anyway and cannot be retrieved.
Using the scroll wheel or the up and down scroll arrows on a multiple choice test may change the answer you have selected. For example, if you select answer A and then scroll down the selected answer will change to B, C, etc. Always check to ensure that the selected answers are still the ones you wish to submit.
Use a wired internet connection wherever possible
Wireless is convenient but there are often ‘hiccups’ in internet service. Those interruptions are small enough to go unnoticed by humans, but can cause problems with the Blackboard system. If you have a choice, choose a wired connection.