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Online and Distance Education at OISE

Blackboard Starter Kit for OISE Faculty

4. Edit  your Course Menu.

Editing your course menu

This information is also available in printable format via PDF download, and video demonstration:

download pdf               YouTube Video


By default, Blackboard will create your course using the default template 'shell'.  At OISE, we suggest that you modify this shell to eliminate extra menu items that are not necessary.  For many instructors at OISE, you do not need most of the default menu items that appear in your course.  For example, many faculty prefer to remove the busy default "Home Page" and replace it with the standard "Announcement" page like in previous years.

How can I create a basic "Announcements" page?

The default page is now the customizable module "Home Page".  You can remove it and replace it with the standard Announcements page by following these steps:

1) in the course menu (blue + sign), select Create Tool Link

2) name it “Announcements” and leave the Type as Announcements”.  Check off ”Available to Users” and click Submit.

3) move the new “Announcements” menu item to the top of the menu (drag&drop using the little up/down arrows beside it)

4) click the small double down arrows beside Home Page in the menu, select Delete.

It should make the Announcements page the default page, and look like it did in previous years.


What about these other menu items like "My Grades" and "Contact"?  Can I delete those?

The default template that comes with your course has some built-in links that you may not be using for your course.  For example, the "My Grades" will only present information to students if you are using the Grade Center in Blackboard.  If you are not, that section will not be useful.  The "Contact" section was designed for large classes that have multiple instructors and TAs.  If you include your contact information in your course outline, then this section may not be necessary for you.

To modify any course menu items, click on the little double down arrow beside the item.


What items do you suggest as the Course Menu?

For most OISE courses, we suggest the following to clean up your course menu:

1. Create an "Announcements" page and delete the "Home Page" as described above.

2. Delete "Contact" and "My Grades" (you can always re-created this again later if you wish).

3. Hide "Tools" (This gives you access to all Blackboard tools, but not your students.  You can always un-hide it later if you wish).

4. Keep the "Library Resources" link (the information displayed on this page can be customized - contact the library for more information).

5. You may want to Rename the "Content" link to something more appropriate, and/or create additional content areas (blue plus + sign, select "Create Content Area").

This would be an example of cleaned-up course menu:


Of course you are more than welcome to explore more areas of Blackboard that can benefit your course.  Please contact us at the Education Commons Client Care Portal if you would like more information or assistance with the tools available to you in Blackboard.






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   3. Blackboard Terms <-          4. Edit Course Menu          -> 5. Add Files