Blackboard is a learning management system which allows students to participate in online discussions and chat, upload assignments, access multimedia content, take quizzes and exams, as well as view grades and class announcements. Teachers can use Blackboard to collaborate with students, post grades, announcements and lesson plans, as well as manage the class calendar. Whether using Blackboard for traditional classes or distance learning, it helps to increase student engagement outside the physical classroom.
Other benefits of the Blackboard Learning System include the ability to store content in a centralized location, the cost effectiveness of the system, and the variety of useful tools provided, which help students stay motivated. Ease of access is another plus, as students and teachers can access the online classroom via web browser or with the Blackboard mobile apps.
The first version of the Blackboard Learning System came out in 1997. Its main components are centered on communication and content. In addition to the online chat and discussion board features, there's an email tool that allows teachers and students to communicate through individual or mass email. Teachers can set up learning modules in the software to group content, including media, tests and assignments, for individual lessons.