Blackboard Collaborate – Introducing Gallery View

A new feature is now available to use as a Moderator in your online lecture and seminar sessions in Blackboard Collaborate – Gallery View.

What is Gallery View?

Similar to other video conferencing platforms, Gallery View will allow Moderators to see up to 25 camera feeds from session attendees on their screen, allowing them to see individual attendee reactions and improving the overall teaching and learning experience when delivering via Collaborate.

What’s more, Gallery View includes the option to change to two additional viewing modes – ‘Speaker View’ and ‘Tiled View’ – which will follow the active speaker and will make their camera feed the main video that is on-screen – Ideal for presentation and discussion-based scenarios.

Each of the the new viewing modes are selectable on the top right-hand corner of your Collaborate screen:

This picture shows the new Gallery View mode in Blackboard Collaborate. There are 20 individual cameras on the screen, and a green arrow is pointing to where the setting can be found on screen to switch between Gallery View, Speaker View and Tiled View.
Gallery View in Blackboard Collaborate.

New Control Features

Gallery View also includes some additional controls that will allow you to configure the overall view on your own screen and to moderate your session whilst using the Gallery View mode.

Your attendees are listed in alphabetical order and their camera feeds can be zoomed in upon to allow for less cameras to be on-screen and for any displayed cameras to be in a larger size.

If you would like for particular attendees in your session to appear first then Gallery View now has the function for any individual’s camera to be pinned so that they appear at the top of your attendee list. You can pin more than one person at a time and their camera order will appear in the order that you pin them in.

To pin an attendee, simply click on the attendee control icon on their camera feed and select ‘Pin Video’:

To view any cameras that are not currently on display, you can navigate between ‘pages’ of your session using the left and right-arrow icons on either side of the session screen.

These controls are highlighted below:

Lastly, you’re able to moderate your session by clicking on individual attendees and selecting the option to either send them a private message, change their role in the session or remove the person from the session:

Please note: To use Gallery View, you must use Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge (Chromium) as your web browser. At this time, Gallery view isn’t available in Safari® on iOS or iPadOS.

Sharing Content

Whilst in Gallery View, you are also able to switch the focus to any content that you would like to share, such as a PowerPoint Presentation or screen-sharing, and return to the Gallery View mode once you have stopped sharing.

Disabling Gallery View

By default, Gallery View is enabled for all attendees in the session to use.

You can make Gallery View available to Moderators only or disable the function altogether by selecting the Settings ‘Cog’ in the Collaborate Panel, followed by ‘Session Settings’.

In the ‘Session Settings’ window, you have the option to make Gallery View available for either all attendees, Moderators only or for Gallery View to be disabled altogether.

Overview Video

Want to see Gallery View in action? See this short introduction from Blackboard, below.

Blackboard Collaborate – Gallery View Help Pages

Build Accessible – Inclusive Content by Design

Introduction

From 23rd September 2018, it became law for public sector bodies to make the content of their websites and mobile apps more accessible to users under the Public Sector Bodies Accessibility Regulations 2018.

This government regulation* is an extension of the Equality Act 2010 and is benchmarked against the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 AA (WCAG 2.1 AA Standard). Its purpose is to ensure that public sector websites’ content is accessible for all users and can be used with the most common assistive technologies, including screen magnifiers, screen readers and speech recognition tools.

It is particularly important to be aware that content that is published after 23rd September 2019 must meet these guidelines and any video or audio content published after 23rd September 2020 must include captions and transcripts.

This short blog contains information on the resources that are available to you to enable you to make your content compliant.

*Further information can be found at the end of this blog article – See ‘Further Reading’.

The Learning Design Exemplar – Quick and simple support material created for you

To enable and support staff in their use of learning technologies, the LTD Team have developed The Learning Design Exemplar – A quick and easy-to-use information resource located within each staff members’ Learning Edge (Blackboard) course list.

We’re pleased to also announce a brand-new section – ‘Inclusive by Design’ – in response to working towards achieving accessibility requirements to benefit our students.

This section has been created to serve as a quick resource to guide you through the various techniques, tools and functions that can be used to create accessible content.

Remember: Think “Build Accessible“.

In less than 15 minutes of video guides, this section covers the following topics for making your content compliant:

These techniques and tools can be used to evaluate and improve existing course material accessibility for your students and further material is included to review topics in greater detail.

It’s quick and simple to find:

Simply search for “Learning Design Exemplar” within your course list on Learning Edge (Blackboard) and the course will display in your results:

And that’s not all

Have you wondered how to go about using breakout groups in your Collaborate sessions but don’t know where to start?

Are you unsure about that particular setting for your Turnitin Submission Dropbox?

Do you need to know how to quickly add captions to your Collaborate session recordings?

It’s all in the Learning Design Exemplar!

Each section provides information and bite-size video guides for the most commonly used learning technologies ranging from Blackboard and Collaborate to Panopto and other tools:

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The Learning Design Exemplar – We strongly encourage you to take a look when you can!

Further Support

Be sure to check out the Staff Accessibility Toolkit and LTD Wiki pages for further support and information resources around making your content accessible.

As always, please contact the LTD Team for any further advice and guidance: ltdsupport@edgehill.ac.uk

Further Reading

The accessibility of content within the government regulations is benchmarked against the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 AA (WCAG 2.1 AA Standard) and the content’s ability to be used with the most common assistive technologies, including screen magnifiers, screen readers and speech recognition tools.

Published on the UK Government webpages this standard follows four design principles for published content – It must be perceivable, operable, understandable and robust.