Highlights from the Bb Mailbag: Top 5 Posts of the Year


Welcome to the Blackboard Mailbag, where we feature a commonly asked question that has been hitting our mailbox recently: blackboard@fordham.edu. You’ll find an archive of all of the previous questions and answers on our fordham.edu/blackboard website.

Note: Features may change with future updates.


We are excited to celebrate the first full year of the Bb Mailbag!  This year has been filled with exciting new features, improvements, and valuable tips for maximizing your Blackboard experience. Here are the top five highlights that you won’t want to miss.

AI Design Assistant

In the realm of content creation, the AI Design Assistant has been a game-changer. This tool helps instructors design visually appealing and pedagogically sound course content with minimal effort. At all steps in the creation process, you’re able to adjust the complexity of content and customize everything that the AI Design Assistant generates.  This has significantly reduced the time instructors spend on course design, allowing more focus on engaging with students and enhancing the learning experience.

You can use the AI Design Assistant to:

  • Guide you through building the Course Structure
  • Generate Discussions or Journals from Course Title and Description
  • Create Rubrics from Course Content
  • Generate Assignment prompts and Test questions 
  • Question Bank generation from Ultra Documents
  • Generate Images

Batch Edit Items – Visibility, Deletion, and Release Dates

Course organization can be a daunting task, but the introduction of the Batch Edit Items feature has simplified this process immensely. This tool allows instructors to manage multiple items at once, whether it’s adjusting visibility settings, setting release dates, or deleting outdated content. The ability to make these changes in bulk saves a significant amount of time and ensures that courses remain up-to-date and well-organized throughout the semester.

Accommodations vs. Exceptions

Managing accommodations and exceptions for students has been simplified with the enhanced features in Blackboard. Accommodations allow instructors to provide extended time or different due dates for students with documented needs, ensuring compliance with accessibility standards and individualized education plans. Exceptions, on the other hand, can be used for one-off extensions or adjustments for specific students due to unforeseen circumstances. These features enable instructors to handle diverse student needs more efficiently, promoting a more inclusive and supportive learning environment.

Increasing Student Engagement with Perusall

Communication and engagement are crucial in online learning, and Perusall has emerged as a standout tool in this regard. Integrated with Blackboard, Perusall turns reading assignments into interactive and collaborative activities. Students can highlight text, make annotations, and engage in discussions directly within the readings. This not only enhances understanding and retention of the material but also fosters a sense of community and collaboration among students.

Course Quota and Out of Storage Error Message

Blackboard courses are limited to 2GB of storage in order to reduce unnecessary fees.  Tools such as the Content Collection and Panopto allow faculty to manage the amount of storage the content in their Blackboard course is using.


These highlights represent just a fraction of the valuable content shared through the Bb Mailbag this year. Each post is aimed at sharing solutions to commonly experienced issues and helping you make the most of Blackboard’s extensive features, ensuring a smoother, more efficient, and more engaging teaching and learning experience. Stay tuned for more updates and tips in the coming year!

For additional FAQs and resources about Blackboard, visit fordham.edu/blackboard, attend one of our workshops, or reach out to us with your availability and we will accommodate small groups and one-on-one sessions.

Have feedback or suggestions on features? Blackboard’s parent company Anthology hosts The Idea Exchange. This is a place specifically for Blackboard to track and manage enhancement requests. It allows for things like upvoting ideas and sharing development plans and statuses. You will need to create an account to access the Idea Exchange.

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