Today: Feb 27, 2024

Owls react to new Blackboard update

Brianna Wallen- News Editor

Spring semester is in the air! This means new classes, new students and a new sports season. There is one thing that was not on these Owls’ list of reinventions. Lo and behold, Blackboard welcomed Owls back with a whole new look.  

Blackboard is the top global provider of educational technology for K-12 and higher education. The majority of the university’s professors utilize the website to post assignments, quizzes and more. During winter break, the website had a whole new makeover that students did not expect to see. 

Sports management major Tyvonn Thompson, a sophomore, said that he was surprised to see the new update.  

“My exact words were ‘oh this is new,’ but I liked the new look,” Thompson said.  

Despite the surprise, Blackboard’s new look was not a disappointment. Psychology major 

Antasia Anderson, a freshman, said that Blackboard Ultra has its perks.  

“I really like the way it looked,” Anderson said. “It’s more accessible and easier to navigate.”  

With these new additions, Anderson said that this can help to benefit her as a student. 

“Since I’m able to see all my grades at once from each class, this can help me to stay on track,” Anderson said.  

Along with the website’s new homepage that includes the university’s personalization feature, it also has additional tabs to organize multiple categories. Located on the left side of the screen, users can access their activity stream, calendar, grades, organizations and more.  

Due to these features, students have favorable comments about the new organization. 

“I can see things more clearly by everything being more upfront,” Thompson said. “The old Blackboard required a lot of searching and clicking to find what you’re looking for.” 

In fact, many students were in favor of Blackboard Ultra instead of its previous look. One of these students is sociology major with a concentration in criminology Te’Asiah Jones, a freshman.  

“I don’t like the old version because it had all of the courses and everything lined up back-to-back.”  

Despite some students being in favor of the update due to its easier accessibility, others had opposing opinions. Early childhood education major Priscilla Adebambo, a sophomore, said that the new update made the website confusing.  

“It just made me realize that with a new semester, I have to figure out how to find my assignments on top of doing them,” Adebambo said. “I think that it’s so weird that they would do that mid-year.” 

The new structure can be difficult to follow, especially for students that were acquainted with the former layout. Though, Blackboard is paired with instructions to help students navigate its updated appearance. 

While Owls’ opinions are split regarding Blackboard’s new update, the new look will surely take some adjusting.  

“I feel like if I get to know this one, I will like it because it looks nice, but you know the old Blackboard is just familiar,” Adebambo said. 

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