Blackboard Collaborate is an online collaborative learning solution designed primarily for elementary and high schools, higher education and government facilities.
Blackboard Collaborate offers a browser-based web conferencing tool to facilitate interaction between instructors and students. It has a classroom chatter feature that offers a chatting platform for students to share text, audio and video content.
The interactive whiteboard feature displays PowerPoint slides for engaging multiple participants with a single presentation. Whiteboard content can be added or edited directly from Blackboard Collaborate without opening PowerPoint.
Users can personalize their profiles with pictures, videos and other content to facilitate communication. Blackboard Collaborate allows users to share PowerPoint and PDF files with classes without any additional software required.
The solution can be integrated with Blackboard Learn to provide a complete learning management system (LMS).
Donna from FL Virtual School
I like that Blackboard Collaborate allows users to access the meetings via desktop, laptop, and mobile device. I also like that users can create their own rooms and breakout rooms within the main session.
I don't like that users who access the meetings from mobile device have limited abilities to use the tools within the session. I feel as though a mobile device would make it easier to use the whiteboard tools and options, but they are completely shut down for participants who attend via a mobile device.
Blackboard Collaborate has many good features, including sharing PowerPoint Presentation, Web tours, videos, etc. It is outstanding when on a laptop or desktop, but it is only average on a mobile device.
Cortney from FLVS
I love that students are able to use the mic and be involved. In addition the Powerpoint transfer makes it REALLY easy to create lessons. I think that's my favorite part.
Being dropped from the room, not being able to have a large amount of slides/rooms/and participates without the room dropping everyone out.
Being able to have separate rooms support more files and participants. Being able to record in each individual break out rooms.
Nancy from Florida Virtual School
Easy to use and add new objects. Students enjoy being in blackboard and enjoy using the tools offered to students.
Internet issues can be experienced. If too many students on in rooms, can freeze up.
Add larger storage and user availability. It would be great to have the ability to add lots of rooms in a session and load a variety of slides to be used by students. I am not sure if it an issue on the "school website" or a blackboard concern.
Lauren from Florida Virtual School
Blackboard Collaborate is such a great option for online teachers. We use it to meet with students and present lessons live on the computer. I use it weekly. It is seamlessly integrated with PowerPoint.
The features are neat - you have lots of controls as a moderator. You can allow students to speak, use video cameras, type, draw, add pictures to the whiteboard, etc. You can set how many students can be speaking at once. You can mute them by taking away tools. You can create breakout rooms. You can play all sorts of media. You can remove students who are not behaving. You can lock the room or allow attendees in late. I've met with anywhere from 1 to 700 participants.
You can make permanent forcing slides and make sure that students can't do anything without a teacher being present, but there are downsides to those functionalities as well.
The app is really great. It is limited, and simple, but I've never had a problem with it.
The major thing I dislike is the "exception error" that I get CONSTANTLY. Basically, BBC can only handle so much data. Because it can't tell which participant needs what, it actually has to save and stream anything within a certain time period and send that out to everyone in the room. So, it really bogs the room down. It is just saving a TON of data at any given time. We've had to create separate rooms for back to back sessions instead of hosting them in the same room for this reason. It'll give an exception error if you try to do too much with too many people in too small a timeframe.
Don't try to host a session over a wireless hotspot unless you have unlimited data. One session cost me like 2 gigs of data.
Recording can only be done in the main room. If you need to record in a breakout session, you'll have to figure something else out. We use Snagit for breakout room recordings.
The administrator panel is very confusing. I'm really tech savvy and I have a hard time navigating. It is definitely not intuitive when it comes to setting up new rooms and adding moderators.
The permanent forcing slides are good. No issues there. However, what a pain to set up -- it just makes no sense. I wish it was easier to figure out how to do that.
We've tried several and BBC seems to be the best. With any product, there is no such thing as perfect. I've had experience with 3 different presentation softwares and the other one I liked was Elluminate. Blackboard Collaborate is a good one but I wish it could handle more data. Consider: cost, how many attendees you'll have, how often you'll use it, and what support you'll have.