wasting bandwidth since 1999

Abandoning Blackboard

It’s been a while since I’ve written about how much I dislike Blackboard, the borg-like learning management system used here in the overly-large school district.

Why bother? Little has changed over the past four years. The site is still a turn of the century course delivery system, one that gives both teacher and students a false impression of what publishing to the web is or could be.

The writer of this post has been Working in Blackboard (at the college level instead of our K-12 application) a little longer than we have and sees many of the same problems.

But 15 years later I am no longer relieved to be working in Blackboard. I now find it an obstacle. Things that should be easy, such as blogging, editing and uploading videos, live synchronous sessions, using wikis etc. are unnecessarily difficult in Blackboard, or they are [not] in the version of Blackboard that I am using.

She, however, is willing to work around the flaws in the system, using kluges to offer her students far superior blogging, wiki and discussion tools.

I’m not. I’m tired of helping people patch together something useful. It’s long past time for our district to abandon the expensive mess that is Blackboard and find an online solution for students and teachers that actually works.


  1. CJ Phoenix

    I don’t remember what you said about Google Drive and docs, but in conjunction with https://www.google.com/edu/products/productivity-tools/classroom/ Google Classroom, it’s a powerful online solution. In my urban district many families cannot afford the more expensive MS software and they worry about viruses. We want to try G.Classroom this year, if our overseers permit it. It may be something you want to look at if you’re not adverse to Google products.

  2. tim

    We are already a big user of Google Apps for Education, which only adds to the confusion over Blackboard. When Classroom was released last year we got it turned on immediately and many people asked if we were going to drop BB. Sadly, no since our IT department loves large, highly-structured companies that offer a clearly laid out “roadmap”. Even if they never meet their stated deadlines.

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