Check you have the right permissions to copy
To course copy from one year to the next, you will need to be an instructor on both the source course, and the destination course.
If you are not an instructor on the:
- Source course and this course is from the previous academic year: contact the TEL Team to obtain access.
- Source from the current academic year or destination course: speak to your college’s/school’s/department’s SITS administrator to be added to the Blackboard course.
Check last year’s content area names
If the course area in the source course and the course area in the destination course have the same name and are of the same type, the content from the source course will be added, but will not replace the content in the area in the destination course. You may want to prevent this – if so, rename the content area in the destination course prior to copying.
Perform a course copy
Browse to the source Blackboard course.
In the Course Management section (underneath the course menu, on the left-hand side), expand Package and Utilities in the Control Panel and click Course Copy. The Copy Course screen will open. There are four steps to complete on this screen, prior to starting the course copy:
- Select copy type
- Select copy options
- File attachments
Step 1: Select copy type
Leave this at the default setting – there are no other options listed in the dropdown.
Step 2: Select copy options
Destination Course ID
A new window/tab will open to let you browse or search for the destination course:
Click the radio button [a] next to the required course then click Submit [b] This will close the window/tab and take you back to the previous screen.
Select Course Materials, tools, and options
Content areas are listed first, followed by the various Blackboard tools and settings you can make use of (e.g. blogs, wikis, course availability etc).
To copy a content area/tool into the destination course, ensure that the box is checked.
Your college/school may create Turnitin or Blackboard assignments for you – they may ask for you not to copy these.
The Blackboard Help site has details on the specifics of the options of the built in Blackboard tools. We have highlighted some common ones below.
Making a duplicate of a course
- Turnitin assignments will be copied – you will need to either amend the dates for each one or delete and create new ones.
- The default setting for Discussion boards is:
Include starter posts for each thread in each forum (anonymised)
You will most likely want to change this to:
Include only the forums with no starter posts
- Adaptive release rules will also be copied. If you are making use of dates for adaptive release, availability, or Blackboard assignment due dates, you can use the Date Management tool to change these in bulk rather than edit them one by one.
- If you have any HTML sites, Adobe Presenter, Articulate, or any other similar content you should pay special attention to Step 3 below.
This image (click to see larger version) displays the settings that we believe will be suitable in the majority of cases, but please make sure you have read the bullet points above and understand them. If you are in any doubt please Contact the TEL Team.
To record content for this year’s course – you will need to provision the course.
To make previous Panopto content available to the current year’s course – you will need to provision the course, then select the relevant Panopto folder in last years Blackboard course.
Your tests and surveys will remain deployed in the relevant content area and the grade centre column will remain intact, minus any values.
Your tests, surveys and question pools will be copied but your tests and surveys will be removed from the content area and will have to be redeployed.
These tools will keep their basic structure but minus any of the student-generated content.
Session recordings cannot be course copied. If you want to give current year students access to recordings from a previous year, you will need to download the recording and upload it into Panopto.
Prior to the 2021 academic year, Blackboard Collaborate’s hosting will move from Canada to Ireland. Read more.
Please contact TEL Support, for any support requests.
Step 3: File attachments – aka Course Files
Everything you upload into a Blackboard course gets saved into the Course Files area.
Select Copy links and copies of the content. This will copy files that have been linked from items in the course (i.e. attached to an item).
Does your course have any HTML sites, Adobe Presenter, Articulate, or any other similar content?
If so, you will need to select Copy links and copies of the content (include entire course home folder) to ensure that all files for that material are copied to the destination course, not just the file that launches the viewer (eg index.html).
If you leave the default Copy links and copies of the content option selected, your presentations will not work for the students enrolled on the 2020 Blackboard course.
Step 4: Enrolments
Do not include enrolments in the copy
Student enrolments are managed for you based on the module’s record in SITS. Leave this box unchecked.
Step 5: Begin the course copy
Click Submit at the top or bottom of the page
The course copy process will not happen instantly.
The request will go into a queue and you will be emailed when it is complete. Do not attempt the course copy process again!
Check the progress of a course copy
If you want to check on the process of your course copy, navigate to the destination course. The status of the copy will be shown at the top of the page.
You don’t need to keep checking the destination course – you will also receive an email when the copy is complete.
Content areas copied over from the source course are added to the bottom of the course menu. You will need to move content items from out of those content areas into the appropriate ones for the new Aston course template.
If you are making use of dates for adaptive release, availability, or Blackboard assignment due dates, you can use the Date Management tool to change these in bulk rather than edit them one by one.
Delete unneeded content areas from the course menu
When you’ve all the items you need out of the copied content areas, delete them.
Check your course’s accessibility
Use Blackboard Ally‘s accessibility report to see the course’s accessibility score. You can then use the advice shown in Ally to apply improvements where needed.
Check the destination course
Use Blackboard’s Student Preview mode to see the course as a student.
- Does the structure make sense?
- Does the content work?