The following message was emailed to all users of My Dundee on 26/02/2019.
At the start of June, we’ll be updating My Dundee to incorporate Blackboard’s new Ultra Base Navigation. This sleek new interface provides a modern look and feel and will save you time with simpler workflows and easier access to important information. The change will only affect the main navigation of My Dundee: it won’t affect modules or organisations, and won’t require you to do or change anything unless we notify you directly. Please read on for further details.
What is the Ultra Base Navigation?
It is a modern, intuitive navigation menu that lives outside of modules and replaces the existing tabs + boxes layout. It includes links to new pages such as the Activity Stream, Calendar, Messages, etc. that provide quick access to the most critical information consolidated from all your modules.
We’ll now be releasing an early preview of My Dundee with the ultra navigation enabled on the 10th May. We’ll send an email out to all users when this area is ready.
What does this mean for you?
- Starting 4th June, you will see the new navigation as soon as you log into My Dundee.
- Your modules will not change. They will look and operate exactly as they do now, including past, present and unreleased modules.
- You just need to login after the 4th to start enjoying the benefits listed below.
How will this enhance your efficiency and experience?
- Modern, intuitive user experience. Staff and students will enjoy a new simple, intuitive and engaging user experience.
- Works well on mobile devices. This navigation is designed to work well regardless of which device you’re using.
- Aggregates important information. All your module and organisation information – like calendar, messages and grades – is now consolidated into one global view, minimising the time spent navigating into each individual module.
- Only one click away. See something that needs your attention? Just click on it and you will be taken directly there, minimising clicks and saving time.
- Future access to the Ultra Module View. With the Ultra Base Navigation, interested faculty will be able to pilot Blackboard’s new module interface, the Ultra Module View (see ‘What’s Next’ below)
What do you need to do?
For the majority, the answer is ‘nothing’ other than keep an eye out for more information and opportunities to preview the new interface in the coming weeks. We will be doing extensive testing to ensure that the change goes smoothly and let you know if there is any resulting change of plan. Some schools use the old-style tabs to deliver custom content to students – CTIL will be in touch directly with those affected to ensure that the content is preserved in the new interface.
As detailed in our previously published road-map, the next steps for My Dundee are to phase in Ally, a tool that makes it easy to deliver accessible content in your modules, and then launch our Ultra Module Programme:
Upgrade to SaaS(complete January ’19)
- Clean-up (ongoing)
- Enable Ultra Base Navigation (June ’19)
- Launch Ultra Module Programme (October ’19)
- Blackboard Ally (Phased in over 19/20)
The Ultra Module Programme will provide a guided process for schools, disciplines and module leaders to adopt the new ultra interface within their modules as and when they choose. We have an early adopter programme already running to gain some experience and there will be some ultra modules in place for September.
Where can you find out more information?
We will be providing access to a demonstration area in the next few weeks that will allow staff and students to see what My Dundee will look like after the 4th June. You can contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, as well as looking up the following general resources provided by Blackboard:
- Promo Video: Blackboard Learn Ultra (includes a look at ultra for modules)
- Feature Videos: Activity Stream | Notifications | Messages
- Blackboard help: Instructor | Student
- PDF Brochures: Instructor | Student
- Instructors can also sign up to Blackboard’s Course Sites for a free trial (*this must only be used for trial purposes)
We’ll be releasing more information in the coming weeks. Major announcements will come by emails like this one, everything else will be posted on our blog, the staff /student newsletters and on the front page of My Dundee itself. Kind Regards Hamish Loveday
Senior Educational Technologist, Centre for Technology and Innovation in Education (CTIL)