Blackboard Collaborate and Canvas

Blackboard Collaborate is a system that allows participants to collaborate with each other online. It has been designed with educational uses in mind and has a multitude of features including:

  • Audio-conferencing
  • Real-time polling and quizzes (including multiple choice questions)
  • Application sharing (allowing applications on one computer to be seen by all participants)
  • Text chatting (instant messaging)
  • File transfer
  • Whiteboard (a shared space that everyone can see, allowing attendees to e.g. draw/write on and import graphics, photos and PowerPoint files)
  • Shared web browsing – called “web tour” (allowing attendees to follow one person as they browse the web)
  • Break-out rooms (for small group discussions and collaboration)
  • Recording of sessions (allowing playback at a later time) and capturing of content generated in a session e.g. text chat and Whiteboard.  

In addition, Blackboard Collaborate incorporates management functions to support those running a Blackboard Collaborate session. The most important is the division into two types of users:

  1. Moderators - have access to all the functions and features of Blackboard Collaborate and can assign and withdraw “rights” of participants e.g. the ability to speak. There can be multiple moderators who can “upgrade” participants to moderator status – allowing them access to a greater range of features.
  2. Participants - typically make up the bulk of the users of a Blackboard Collaborate session and have reduced access to the features of Blackboard Collaborate.

The Blackboard Collaborate Launcher for Windows and Mac must be downloaded and installed to join or playback a Blackboard Collaborate session. It is a utility for Windows and Mac and provides a way to launch your Blackboard Collaborate web conferencing sessions and recordings. When you click to join a session or open a recording link, Blackboard Collaborate checks to see if you have the launcher installed. If you do not, Blackboard Collaborate prompts you to download it.

Blackboard resources available include:

  1. Blackboard Help provides documentation for Blackboard Collaborate
  2. Schedule Blackboard Collaborate sessions in Canvas (LTI)

Blackboard Collaborate Student Guide for Canvas

The procedure for instructors that want to use Blackboard Collaborate in their Canvas courses is as follows:

  1. Instructors can include the Download and Install Blackboard Collaborate for Canvas knowledge base article link to include in their course. This is a knowledge base article that provides instructions for students to follow to download and install the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher, Join a Blackboard Collaborate Session, and run the Audio Setup Wizard.

Support Options

  1. Contact an Instructional Design Partner to design learning activities for students, training to use Blackboard Collaborate features, or talk about effective ways to interact with students using web conferencing in your Canvas courses. 
  2. To request technical support, submit a Technology Service Desk email to start a ticket. 
External Links:
  1. Blackboard Help provides documentation for Blackboard Collaborate:
  2. Schedule Blackboard Collaborate sessions in Canvas (LTI):
  3. Download and Install Blackboard Collaborate for Canvas:
  4. Technology Service Desk:


Article ID: 30835
Thu 5/25/17 2:49 PM
Tue 8/6/19 9:01 PM