Evaluation of Blackboard Course Tool

at the Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, College Park


Distance Education, Distance Learning, Online Instruction, Software Evaluation, Web course evaluation, assessment, web based training.


This report is an evaluation of the Blackboard Course tool that was implemented in the Robert H. Smith School of Business during Fall 2002 semester. Web course tools such as Blackboard and WebCT have gained popularity for creating course materials that students can access remotely. Technology enhanced learning as an adjunct to classroom teaching has shown to benefit students by creating virtual community of learners and providing an area for student dialog outside the classroom.

The purpose of this report was to identify issues, advantages, disadvantages, problems and impact that the Blackboard course tool is having on faculty and students in the School. Web-based surveys were used to collect data. Forty-three faculty and 296 students responded to the survey that was administered between October 9 and October 18, 2002. Satisfaction with technical and pedagogical aspects of the tool were addressed in the survey. Findings of this survey should be of interest to faculty and administrators to determine value being offered by this web course tool and results of investments in technology.

Results of the survey found that:

· Faculty and student satisfaction with Blackboard is high
· Blackboard is mainly being used as a convenience tool to distribute course materials
· Faculty training is needed that goes beyond tool use and incorporates pedagogical issues
· Portal use should be further encouraged in the School

Download complete report
(pdf file - 153KB)


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