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Blackboard editor – working with text and adding files, multimedia and weblinks

The Blackboard editor is used to add and format text, attach files, embed multimedia, and insert equations, links, and tables etc. The editor is available in assignments, tests, discussions, journals, blogs, wikis, and more.

Overview of the process

This guide will explain the editor functions represented by icons in the editor tool bar, as well as how to do the following in the editor:

  • add a file, multimedia and weblinks
  • work with text in the editor

Please also refer to staff guide to creating and managing Blackboard content for adding files, multimedia and weblinks as content items and not within the Blackboard editor.

Be sure to have edit mode on, to access all of the instructor’s functions. You can turn edit mode on from the top right-hand corner when viewing a Blackboard course. Please also be aware that students will be able to download any material you make available to them.

Editor functionality

Each editor function is represented by icons in the editor tool bar. Please see the Blackboard help page for definitions of each icon function.

Add a file 

  1. Select the insert file icon
  2. Select the file(s) from your computer
  3. Edit the field name of link to file, if required. In the editor box, a link to the downloadable file will appear. It is also advisable to chose to open links in new windows.
  4. To remove the link, right click on the link and choose remove link

Add an image

  1. Select the insert image icon
  2. Select the image(s) from your computer. It is possible to add image types such as GIF, JPG, JPEG, BMP, PNG, and TIF.
  3. On the appearance tab, you can control image placement and appearance. A sample thumbnail shows how your choices will appear. Pixels are used for dimensions, space, and the border. If you select the check box for constrain proportions and change the dimensions, the image is resized without horizontal or vertical distortion. 
  4. It is also  possible to edit an existing image by right-clicking on the image and selecting image, to then navigate to the appearance tab.
  5. If you want your image to appear right or left of a block of text, type your text in the editor first. Then, move your cursor to the beginning of the text and insert your image there.
  6. To delete, right click on the image and choose cut

If you don’t want the media file to appear embedded in your text, select the insert file icon instead. Browse for the media file and create a link that users select to view the media in another window or tab.

Add a video

  1. Select the insert video icon to upload a video from your computer or create a link to a video file (type or paste a URL in the file/URL field). The video appears to preview. The video dimensions can be modified (displayed in pixels). If not set, the actual size populates the boxes. If you select the check box for constrain proportions and add a measurement, the file is resized without horizontal or vertical distortion. You can preview the file in the window.
  2. To delete, right click on the video and choose cut

Add a ‘mashup’

The mashup feature in Blackboard allows the viewing and sharing of media content from external websites, such as YouTube.
  1. Select the insert mashups icon
  2. Select the listed external website, such as YouTube
  3. Search the site for the video
  4. Select the video and choose further settings, such as to show the original link, to embed the video etc. It is also possible to preview content.
  5. To delete, right click on the video and choose cut

Add a weblink

  1. Type the text for the link in the editor
  2. Highlight the text
  3. Select the insert weblink icon
  4. Copy and past the URL address in the link path field. It is advisable to set the link to open in a new window.
  5. The text for the link will now be blue and underlined, indicating it is an active link
  6. Right click on a link and choose from the drop-down menu to edit (link)  or remove the link

 

 

 

 

 

Please check that links you create still link out to relevant / live content.

Working with text in the editor

The Blackboard editor is used to add and format text in assignments, tests, discussions, journals, blogs, wikis, and more.

Copy and paste text 

For a large amount of content, it is advisable to type in an offline simple text editor, such as Notepad or TextEdit, and then copy and paste content into the Blackboard editor, in order to protect against loss of work due to issues such as loss of internet connection.

To avoid formatting issues;

  • copy and paste from Notepad or TextEdit (which will have cleared any formatting)
  • copy and paste into the HTML code view window (which will remove formatting)
  • copy and paste from other sources (such as Word).  Select all the text and select the remove formatting icon.  All bullets, numbered lists, indentations, line spacing, centered text, and font formatting and sizing will be removed.

Adjust line spacing

  1. Select the text
  2. Select the edit CSS style icon to open a separate window 
  3. In the field line height, select a sizing option such as ems. Also select value and type a numeric value. For example, the number 2  will display text as double spaced when used in combination with ems.
  4. Select update and submitYour new line spacing shows in the editor.

Lines and horizontal rules

Select the insert line icon to add a thin horizontal line, spanning the entire width of the text area

Select the insert horizontal rule icon to add a thin centered line. The following can then be set:

  • Width in pixels or as a percentage of the total available width of the text area
  • Height of the line relative to the current position
  • Shadow / no shadow

Check spelling

Please be aware there is no automatic spelling checker in the editor. Please copy and past content elsewhere to check for spelling errors.

Updated on 03/13/2019

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