Did you know that students can now access their past module sites for as long as they are enrolled on that course?
In September 2010, we changed our previous policy of archiving module sites each year (organisation sites are still archived). Instead students now retain access to the module sites they have taken for as long as they are studying at the University. This includes all of the grades, feedback, discussion and content from the sites.
You do not need to do anything to your module site for students to continue to be able to access it. Be sure you do not set the site available to students at the end of the year, or students will lose access to those past materials. Of course, staff still have control over what parts of their site are available to students, in case you have concerns about students accessing particular materials such as exam questions. We recommend you leave as much available for students as possible to help them when they want to revisit the previous module’s materials.
Some staff have asked if they should continue to update the previous module site. We recommend that you do not update the content from the previous module site, as this is additional work for you, and students will not expect that content to change. Students are unlikely to check the past materials regularly, instead occasionally dipping in to check on particular resources.
Students will only have access to sites that they were or are enrolled on. Next year’s students won’t be on the older site, but a new version instead, so you do not need to worry that they might access the past materials.
To access past module sites, staff and students should click on the All Sites tab in the Blackboard Sites shuspace channel. The All Sites tab displays all of the sites a particular user has access to, while the Current Sites tab displays only the sites from the current academic year. Users can override the default settings of if a site is diplayed in Current Sites or not using an option in the double chevron menu next to a site’s name. This allows staff and students to personalise their list of Blackboard sites based on their needs, and has proven popular with users.
The ‘Did you know?’ series explores possibilities in e-learning that you may not be aware of. See other articles from the series.