Blackboard goes mobile

Students and faculty, rejoice.

The Division of Instructional Innovation and Assessment (DIIA) has unveiled a mobile version of Blackboard. The university is among the first campuses where students can use Web-enabled mobile devices to access everyday tools for viewing grades, checking assignments, participating in discussions, seeing schedules, communicating about courses, assessing instruction, storing files and organizing tasks.

"I think I speak on behalf of all students when I say we appreciate the effort The University of Texas makes in accommodating our needs, using new and innovative techniques and technologies," one student told DIIA. "In this day and age, innovation and efficiency are key to success, ours included."

The tool is the latest of several student-centered mobile interfaces DIIA has developed for its growing collection of versatile courseware.

DIIA completed the first version of the Blackboard mobile interface last summer and pilot tested the system last semester. With DIIA's customization of the university's Blackboard, the mobile interface has been optimized for delivering many of Blackboard's familiar features as well as integrating the Digital Archive SErvices (DASE) collection. The interface became operational for all students this semester.

The mobile Blackboard joins eGradebook, Mobile Ongoing Course Assessment (MOCA) and the electronic Course-Instructor Survey (eCIS) among the choices available at DIIA's mobile courseware hub.