Blackboard, Replacing Itself As We Say It
With Trump administration and GOP-led Washington D.C. in control, there is a greater push to implement innovative teaching strategies across all of our educational systems. That being said, there are two unique scenarios that may arise and affect the effectiveness of teaching strategies.
Fallout of Blackboard-Based Assessment Practices
Most of the time, online learning environments function well. There are a lot of things that can go wrong with an online classroom, and some have been known to topple. Among them: teachers signing up for classes in full, or single subjects, and students opting out for other reasons. The impact of this in the absence of any students in the room can be seen in enrollment rates, as well as in informal campus life and socialization. “People did drop out. And I would get messages like, ‘yeah, I didn’t finish, I left because I was bored,’” said Michael Taylor, President of Taylor Associates Inc., at the fourth-annual Innovation Exchange Luncheon.
How, then, do you ensure the success of a student’s learning experience from one of the most advanced, popular platforms of the day?
It’s all about proactively meeting your students’ needs.
Tyler Wilson, a professor in the University of Maryland College Park School of Education said, “The huge failure of Blackboard-based assessment was in the inability to find out what happens when there are no students in the room.”
“I will admit the online courses were a success, there’s no question about that,” he continued. “It was a success because students were placed in a vulnerable situation. That being said, it resulted in a significant weight of high expectations for the students that we didn’t help set them up for success.”
If blackboard were a real body, it would probably look a lot like a yo-yo — constantly moving up and down in price.
But digital platforms and online learning environments like Blackboard seem like a slippery slope in that they are all too easily altered from the original intention that teachers had in mind when developing the learning process.
In 1995, more than 150,000 people began requesting the company’s instructions for how to upgrade to new software, according to All Trends Digital News, which was then the largest update ever, ever, issued. “The new software could end up being fixed much more quickly,” the outlet read. “Meanwhile, teachers, students, administrators, and parents will be tied up in a struggle over control, as the software transforms from the master teacher’s to the master user’s operating system. The result: a clash between two cultures, riven with privacy and security questions.”
Looking back, it is clear that Blackboard proved to be a failed addition to online learning. So how do we avoid the same pitfalls again? By taking the time to think of each student individually, and ensuring that he or she’s well served in a way that best fits the unique culture of a specific campus.