Overview of Blackboard Collaborate Ultra
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra is the newest version of Blackboard’s free web conferencing module. Unlike previous versions, Ultra runs directly in your browser with no additional software installations required. A browser plug-in is required for screen sharing using Chrome.
Collaborate Ultra lets faculty, staff and students meet in an online space with video, audio, chat, whiteboards and screen sharing. It can be used for online course meetings, faculty hours, presentations, study sessions, special classes or make-up days.
The legacy version of Blackboard Collaborate is still available to all users. This version requires Java installation. For information and user guides on this version of Collaborate, please visit our Blackboard Collaborate information web page.
Some features of Blackboard Collaborate are not yet available in Ultra, including “Shared Sessions” (which grants shared access between courses) or conferences with more than 250 participants. For a full feature comparison, please reference Blackboard’s documentation:
Because Collaborate Ultra leverages modern browser technology to provide the fastest experience, faculty and staff who are sharing their screen will need to use an updated version of Firefox or Chrome and download a browser plugin. Other browsers may be used to view videos and shared screens, but screensharing cannot be initiated from browsers other than updated versions of Firefox or Chrome. Click to view Blackboard’s detailed Browser Support document.
Collaborate Ultra Interface Overview
Click on the purple plus signs to learn about Blackboard Collaborate Ultra’s Interface.
Where to Access Blackboard Collaborate?
NU Faculty, Students: go to myNEU and log into Blackboard on the Self-Service tab. Once you select one of your courses, Blackboard Collaborate Ultra can be accessed under the “Tools” tab located on the left hand menu.
Requirements for Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Web Conferencing:
- A computer with an Internet connection
- A Northeastern myNEU account (faculty and students may visit myNEU to obtain their myNEU account)
- Headset with microphone – See the headset recommendations (PDF) here
- Webcam (optional)
- System Requirements
For Faculty: Getting Started
Quick Instructions for Creating a Collaborate Session in Your Course
- Go to your course in Blackboard and select Tools > Blackboard Collaborate Ultra.
- Click the plus (+) sign at the top right side of the sessions menu to create a new session.
- Name your session and provide Start Time,” “End Time,” and “Session Settings.” Click “Save.”
- This will create a session with all of your students as participants and you as the moderator. A web link for guests outside of class is available from the Guest Access area at the top of “Session Settings” in Session Options.
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Moderator Resources
- Moderator cheat sheet
- Moderator get started guide
- Moderator help
- Faculty examples of Blackboard Collaborate Ultra use
- Template email to send to guest moderators
- Template email to send to participants
- While you wait PowerPoint Collaborate Ultra instructions
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Moderator Videos
- Interface Tour
- Collaborating in Collaborate Ultra
- Using Breakout Groups
- Polling in Collaborate Ultra
- Closed Captioning in Collaborate Ultra
- Add a Collaborate Ultra session to NEU Blackboard
- Get Collaborate Ultra session guest link
- Call-in to session tutorial
Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Participant Resources
- Participant cheat sheet
- Participant get started guide
- Blackboard Collaborate Ultra Participant help
- Call-in to session tutorial
- Instructor-led Classes: Go to our Training page and look for ‘Introduction to Collaborate Ultra’ in the Calendar of Upcoming ITS Training Classes
- How-to Solutions: Answers to commonly asked Blackboard Collaborate questions may also be found in myKnowledge, the ITS Knowledge Base.
- Blackboard Collaborate provides 24X7 Support
You can submit a support request on-line or call them directly. Contact Blackboard Collaborate Technical Support here.
- Information Technology Services Northeastern University Blackboard Support
Phone: 617.373.4357 (xHELP)
- Online MBA, MST, and MSF programs offered through the D’Amore-McKim School of Business using Blackboard
Visit DMSB Support for answers to common questions, live chat, or to submit a support ticket
- Blackboard Request Forms (Faculty Only)
Alternative Web Conferencing Tools
These web conferencing tools may be helpful in specific contexts, but not all are supported by ATS.