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In this course, Patrick Crispen teaches the ins and outs of Blackboard 9 so that educators and trainers can get up to speed in the system quickly—even if they've never used Blackboard before. The course explores customizing a course site, managing users, and adding and organizing content, including multimedia. It also shows how to perform student assessments in the Grade Center, as well as how to communicate with students and encourage participation and collaboration.
To link from your Blackboard course site to an external web site or URL, click the content area--in this case Course Documents. If there are any folders, click on the folder in which you wish to go. Make sure Edit Mode is on and then click Build Content and click URL. This is new in Blackboard 9.1 and not available in Blackboard 9.0. So, besides uploading files, you can add hyperlinks from your course to other Internet resources. In others words, you can have it where students click on a link, leave your Blackboard course site, and go out on to the Internet to a resource that you found.
Let me give you an example. I've got this thing called the Theory Into Practice web site, or it's a database, by Greg Kearsley. It's a collection of information on about 50 theories of learning. Click on the theories and you can see he's got information like Cognitive Load Theory from Sweller. It seems like a pretty decent resource to share with my students, so let me add a hyperlink to that. I am going to go in here in the Week 1 folder, I am going to click--and I am not going to create an Item. I am actually going to create a URL, a link to that uniform resource locator, that web site.
It's going to ask me to type in the name of it. I've actually already entered it before, so Theory into Practice. It's going to then ask me for the URL. Now, I could right now try to type the URL. It's got to be the full URL, http://. My recommendation; go back to your web browser and open up the resource and copy the web page address from the address bar. You know that that address works, so when you paste it here, you know it should work here as well.
I can now scroll down. I can enter a description for my students. The description is information that can help them, questions, or instructions. I can even attach a reader or something that might help them as they go to that web site and evaluate it. I can do the same thing down here by browsing My Computer. I am not going to. Now we have seen most of these options before, but there's a new one here: Open in New Window. By default, that's set as No. If I do this and I link to this web site and the students click on it, what's going to happen is it's going to open it within Blackboard.
You'll still see the red bar at the top of the page, or whatever your institution colors are, and the page will be embedded within. I am not sure I like that, but let me show you what that looks like. I am going to track the number of views. I am not going to turn on date and time restrictions, but if I did, I do it in pairs. I always have an After and an Until, or an Until and an After. I am going to click on Submit. It's going to add it to the very bottom of my Course menu of my Week 1 folder. So I'm actually going to drag this thing up.
I want to get it a little higher on the page. So again, anything you add to your page, as long as Edit Mode is on, you can actually put it wherever you want. I dragged it now into position number two on my page. And let's actually show you what this looks like from a student's point of view. I am going to turn Edit Mode off, and you can see this is what it looks like from a student's point of view. If I click on this link, remember, I said don't open this in a new window. So what it does is it actually opens it within Blackboard.
I've still got the navigation bar at the top. I've got the breadcrumb trail here showing that I'm in Week 1. I can actually go a little further into the breadcrumb trail if we go back, and we get a big red warning message saying guess what, this information that you see below is not coming from Blackboard--it's from outside the Blackboard environment. Let me go back and fix this. I am going to turn Edit Mode back on. I am going to back into Theory into Practice. I am going to edit this. Remember, anytime you see a button with two downward-facing chevrons, that's the edit.
I am going to say Open in a New Window and click on Submit. Now, let's see what this looks like. By the way, I don't need to be in Edit Mode Off for this to work. I can click on it right now, and what you will see is it opens up in a new pop-up window. It is completely up to you whether or not to have the pages load within Blackboard or load in a new window. You can just do those in the Settings. So to link to an external web site or URL, click the content area, make sure Edit Mode is on, and then click Build Content > URL.
In our next movie, we are going to show you how to link to an internal course file.
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